Connecting with the campus community through intramural sports
By Noel Ormita, Staff Writer
With the year coming to a close, students are looking for ways to build on healthier choices.
One common goal or resolution for many people is to lose weight and live healthy lives. According to a 2023 survey by Forbes, nearly 50 per cent of people say their resolution is improving fitness and other areas like mental health, diet and weight loss but only 20 per cent say they actually keep themselves accountable.
There are many pathways to fulfilling fitness goals beyond lifting weights and being in the gym. Sports is a great alternative to getting your legs moving and building your stamina. A Statistics Canada report found 55 per cent of Canadians over 15-years-old participate in sport.
Kirsten Kirwer, recreation sports supervisor at MRU Recreation, has seen students develop their leadership and social skills through intramural sports in the more than two years in the position.
“My favourite part is mentoring students,” Kirwer said. “All of the intramural staff, they’re all students and they get to learn and grow in these positions.”
How it works
MRU Recreation offers badminton, volleyball, basketball, hockey and futsal leagues. The website says, “regardless of competition level, having fun is at the forefront of their operations.”
“Students can register as a team or as a free agent,” Kirwer said. “When they register as a free agent, we will put them on a team with other free agents.”
Even if you’re an introvert or a beginner and looking to make new friends, there’s a space for you.
“Sometimes we find that those free agent teams stick together for seasons moving forward,” Kirwer said. “A lot of our students report [to us] that joining intramural sports is their physical activity but we also find that their social and mental well-being follows closely.”
The last two to three weeks are used for playoffs where teams compete for a trophy and bragging rights.
Free: our favourite price
“We want to provide opportunities for students to be physically active in a way that’s meaningful to them,” Kirwer said.
Joining intramural sports is free for students, faculty and select community members. The program runs in the evening and students are able to choose a time that is convenient for them.
“Finding friends, being in a community and having the space to take a break from your studies is important for students,” Kirwer said.
Winter semester programs are available on the MRU Recreation website and registration open on Dec. 5 in-person and over the phone.