By Joelle Fisher
Alma College is known for its involvement with athletics—offering 23 sports total. However, the school’s involvement with sports does not stop there. The Stone Recreational Center offers a number of opportunities for non-athletes and athletes to involve themselves in new and/or unfamiliar sports in a fun, competitive atmosphere.
The Stone Recreational Center, aka “the Rec,” offers 17 intramural (IM) sports to its students. The purpose of these sports is to get the student population to interact with one another outside of the classroom.
Each event usually gets around 8 teams, according to Assistant Director of Campus Recreation and Conferences Anna Thurmond.
“Intramural sports are a great way for students to make new friends and try something new at the college level,” said Thurmond. “It is a one-of-a-kind experience that everyone should take advantage of during their time here at Alma.”
The Rec staff does its best to offer as much of a variety in the events offered for intramural sports. These activities range from pickle ball and dodge ball to beach volleyball and softball. Interested students can sign up for the events on Alma’s website—the IM sports handbook and rule book for the events can be found on the website as well.
“The variability in IM sports is extremely beneficial because it gives more people opportunities to learn and play different sports,” said Dakota Pelach (’18).
“The more sports there are, the more likely people are to be active and the more likely they are to to meet new people.”
Often times, students are hesitant to join an IM team. Common fears are that everyone will be more skilled than you, it will be too competitive and that it won’t be fun. Thurmond responded, “when I was a student here, I was afraid to sign up for sports that I didn’t know how to play and I completely regretted it.
“A lot of the time you’re not the only one who is learning how to play, and the activity can provide you with new, quality experiences and skills.”
The fortunate winners of each tournament get unlimited bragging rights until the following year’s event as well as “Intramural Champs” t-shirts.
Students are able to meet new people and form new friendships, they are able to have a good workout while also reducing their stress level and they are able to create a new sense of involvement.
“Some of my favorite memories at Alma College come from my experiences with intramural sports,” said Liz Putti (’18). “It is such a stress free atmosphere, and everyone just comes together to have fun.”
Pelach added, “the IM sports provide a good balance between competitiveness and fun and I think everyone should try at least one IM event.”
The interests of all are considered in the process of choosing which tournaments to offer, but the staff members are always accepting advice and/or thoughts for future tournaments. If an individuals have any recommendations on the topic, they are encouraged to contact Thurmond. She can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at 989.463.7954.