Campus clubs offer athletic alternatives
December 2, 2010
Filed under Archives
Football, basketball, baseball, volleyball — all of these sports have something in common: while different sports may call for different shapes and sizes, the greater majority of athletics employ a round and bouncy piece of equipment — a ball. Balls may not be for everyone, but a lack of hand-eye coordination should not necessarily translate into an aversion to athletics. At Guilford, clubs sports like archery, fencing, and ultimate Frisbee offer alternatives for those who may be tired of the traditional.
Sports benefit both our bodies and our social lives. Just because you might’ve found yourself bored with the ball games does not mean you should give up. Organized below is a list of alternative club sports by level of time commitment. You might find it worth it to give these a try.
Archery Time Commitment Level: Low
For those whose childhood hero was Robin Hood, or those who simply enjoy precision exercises, Archery provides a low-stress environment for students to practice with the bow and arrow. Although the club is on hiatus for the fall semester, weekly practice is expected to resume early next spring with new plans for club activities. “Next year, we definitely want to do more tournaments and special events,” said junior Lauren McClure, president of the Archery Club. “We have a lot of ideas, such as setting up a dollar bill on a target and having people try to hit it.” While there are occasional tournaments, typically practice involves setting up long-range targets on a field and allowing students to take turns shooting. Footwork is minimal, but the upper arm muscles get some strain from working the bow. McClure stressed that although archery is not always easy right off the bat, trained coaches are there to help newbie players. Practice attracts people with all kinds of experience.
“Archery has an open, relaxed atmosphere,” said McClure. “We’re never super serious. We have competition, but generally people can come and go as they please. We even occasionally work with passersby that see us shooting and are interested enough to come down and join us for practice.”
There is no specified time commitment, making Archery potentially one of the easiest sports clubs to join for people with a packed schedule. The club’s planned meeting time for next semester is from 3-5 p.m. every Saturday. Those interested in upcoming activities can use the club e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Time Commitment Level: Medium
For those who think sword fighting could be their forté, the Fencing Club is a good option for those who want to learn the art of dueling.
Students are armored up before pairing up for duels. Separate chest plates are used for males and females to avoid discomfort. Practiced stances and a set of rules help optimize fairness and safety. “I think fencing can appeal to people that aren’t really engaged with fitness normally,” said senior Damien Romney, vice president and coach for the Fencing Club. “We have a lot of diversity among our players, and we welcome almost anyone who is interested and wants to give it at try.” According to Romney, participants vary from casual to competitive players, but all share a goal-oriented mindset. While interested students are welcome to stop by for a one-time session, those who end up sticking with the club are expected to remain dedicated. “I expect people to come once a week if they’re serious,” said Romney. “If they want to improve at all, showing up infrequently isn’t going to help them much.” Fencing at Guilford is expecting improvements in the coming year. New electrical gear will lessen the need for judges by automatically tracking wins and extra storage should allow for the club to compensate for a larger player turn-out. Fencing meets in the Ragan-Brown Dance Studio Mondays and Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. The club can be contacted by e-mail: email@example.com.
Biohazard: Ultimate Frisbee
Time Commitment Level: High Ultimate frisbee is one of the most widely recognized alternative sports on campus and one of the oldest club sports.
The game is similar to soccer. A disc is moved down the court in order to reach the opposing team’s end zone. Once caught, the frisbee can be thrown in any direction within bounds, but the player must not run while in possession. “Some come and it’s not their thing. Some come and fall in love with it and you’ll see them at every practice for the next four years,” said senior Rory Smith, a captain for the ultimate frisbee team. By engaging in competitions off of school grounds, ultimate frisbee promotes a competitive atmosphere and expands social horizons beyond the Guilford bubble. “We’ve had two tournaments this semester and we have another down in Georgia three weeks from now,” said Smith. While the tournaments schedule might not be comparable to those of varsity sports, the team regards every game as important. Long-term players welcome newcomers, but with the expectation that they will play their best. “We usually meet three days a week for two hours,” said Smith. “Although we stress that academics come first, we still want commitment. If you play, work hard, and show dedication toward your playing, you’ll be welcome.” Ultimate frisbee is a great sport for those who enjoy a team setting and have time to invest in a competitive routine. Ultimate frisbee meets on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays on the Intramural Fields from 3:30-5:30 p.m. They can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.