Intramural sports: a fun way to blow off steam

An array of different opportunities is provided to Denison students through the school’s intramural sports program. With active fun being the main focus of these teams, it’s a noncompetitive way for students to try out sports they’ve always wanted to minus the pressure of peak performance.

“As part of the Denison experience, we want to be able to offer students an opportunity to do something that maybe they have never done before or to participate in an activity that interests them but didn’t have time or the resources to do when they were in high school” Lynsey Whisner, Director of Intramural & Club Sports and Student Wellness said.

“Being part of an intramural team with your friends should be stress free, and a time to just have fun. I also feel that intramurals allow students to meet other students and sometimes faculty that they would not normally meet up within their own social circles.”

It’s common for students to get intramurals mixed up with club sports, despite the key differences between the two experiences. Whisner explained in detail what separates the two types of teams.

“Intramurals are specific sports leagues that typically last three to four weeks, with three sessions each semester, and two or three leagues per session. Anyone can create a team and add that team to the league, but we do have a maximum number of teams that can participate in each league” Whisner said.

The school offers both men’s and women’s leagues, as well as open or coed leagues. Open can be all men, all women or a mix, whereas coed is a mandatory mix of women and men. Each league plays a certain number of games and then Whisner will seed the teams for an end of league tournament, and the winning team receives championship t-shirts.

“Clubs are very different. We have different levels of clubs that go from recreational fun, instructional typically with a hired instructor, competitive with games against other schools and highly competitive, where there is usually a hired coach and the teams play in a conference, potentially qualifying for nationals. The club is sport specific and the focus on that particular sport usually lasts throughout the entire academic year,” Whisner said.

However just because intramurals might not match club sports in terms of competitiveness, it doesn’t mean they deserve any less dedication.

It is still a group of students making the commitment to one another that they will show up and help make it a fun experience for each member of the team. Lyndsey talked about the importance of commitment when it comes to intramurals.

“If you join a team, then the other team members and even the other teams are counting on you to attend the games. It is really frustrating when a team signs up to play in the league, but then never show up to the games. It wastes the time of our workers and the teams that show up thinking they are going to get to play,” Whisner said.

Along with regular sports, intramurals can provide students the opportunity to participate  in some pretty unique options. Whisner and Chris Crume, Denison’s Aquatic Director, have been brainstorming some ideas that’ll allow students other than the swim team to try out the big pool down at Mitchell.

“There are some unique options that we are trying to put together. One is inner tube water polo, a water basketball tournament, battleship, or maybe a volleyball tournament in the pool. We will probably be putting feelers out soon to see if there is interest,” said Whisner.

Don’t miss out on getting involved with intramural sports here at Denison. They provide fun and engaging forms of exercise, and will allow you to meet new students with similar interests to you. If you’d like to sign up, you simply need to register with IMLeagues.com. Once you do that, the site will link you to the Denison page and you can add your team.

Whisner is excited for the next upcoming session, and hopes to see many students getting involved, saying, “Our next session of intramurals will start January 30th with men’s and women’s 5 v 5 basketball and open dodgeball. It is a lot of fun and all of those leagues can get intense. It’s great to see the students be so competitive”.

Be sure to log onto IMGLeagues.com and sign up today. You don’t want to miss out on the unique and enjoyable experience that is intramural sports here on the hill.

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