When it comes to sports at UM, many students follow them religiously to the point that they see themselves in place of the athletes making the big play, leaving with the win and being celebrated as the hero. What students may not know is that they actually have the opportunity to fill this role at UM.
The Patti and Allan Herbert Wellness Center offers a variety of ways for you to get involved in your favorite sports, whether you have played competitively for years or if you just want to learn a new sport. They offer both club sports programs and intramural competitions so there is something available for students with varying levels of commitment.
The wellness center offers 32 different club sports, ranging from common sports such as baseball, soccer, tennis, and volleyball, to some more unique groups like fencing, rock climbing, and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
Most of the clubs also organize at different meet times for members who want to join for competitive or recreational/instructional purposes.
“Many of our students here were involved in some sort of sport when in high school,” said Rhonda DuBord, associate director at the wellness center. “With so many options available, anyone can keep going and meet a lot of new people in the process.”
In addition to practice dates, some of the clubs also participate in tournaments and other events held throughout the year. One of the events taking place this semester is a three-day training camp from Sept. 3 to Sept. 5 hosted by the Karate Club, taught by Sensei Mikami, an eighth-degree black belt.
By the end of the spring semester there were 1,485 students enrolled in club sports with 69 percent of those consisting of residential students and 31 percent commuters.
In an online survey of 337 members representing an equal distribution of all the clubs, 89 percent say they originally joined to have fun, whereas 63 percent joined to meet new people.
Whereas club sports generally go on for the entire year and offer varying levels of competition, intramural leagues are by nature more competitive and only go on for a few weeks during the semester.
This semester, intramural leagues include flag football, tennis (singles or doubles), volleyball, team racquetball and soccer for which you can sign up as a team or as a free agent.
“Joining an intramural team is a great way of getting to meet new people and exercising in a fun and unique way,” said Tom Soria, assistant director at the wellness center in charge of intramurals and special events. “Not only does it break the monotony of studying all the time, but it’s also a great way of learning leadership and organizational skills.”
In addition to the leagues, there are also some special event competitions being offered, ranging from dodgeball to X-Box Madden tournaments. With the exception of fantasy football (which lasts until the NFL football regular season ends), these events generally take place one day out of the semester.
To sign up for intramurals, or for any additional information on the different club sports or intramural leagues, visit the membership office located on the second floor of the wellness center or visit www.miami.edu/index.php/wellness_center/intramurals_sports/.
Ernesto Suarez may be contacted at email@example.com.