The increasing popularity of intramural sports programs at universities and colleges helps target an important issue of lack of daily physical fitness. In addition, it also fosters education, health and socialization in a safe and fun environment.
Angelina Arreola, graduate assistant at University of La Verne, directs the intramural sports program on campus. She has been a part of La Verne’s program since its inception in last semester.
“This is something I look forward to,” Arreola said. “I enjoy it. By the end of the semester, my goal is to increase awareness of the program, get more organizations involved and increase enrollment.”
Arreola said she sees this program as a challenge with great potential and that the students are her first priority.
As an alumna of La Verne, Arreola empathizes with the current students and that he program is her way of giving back to the campus. It is designed to help people have fun and stay active.
“I love them,” sophomore business major Nick Spencer said. “I feel like they really bring people that didn’t get a chance to play sports in college or ever to come together and compete in something that they love.”
Spencer, an avid competitor, participated in the flag football season held last semester.
“I participated in the football one.” Spencer said. “I would definitely do it again because I love to compete so much.”
The intramural sports program features sports like basketball, dodgeball, flag football and ultimate frisbee. However, Arreola also looks for sports to include by using surveys and polls to figure out which sports students want to play most.
She uses social media such as Facebook and Twitter to promote the sports program, along with Instagram, which is the most popular. With time, she hopes to achieve a strong intramural sports program like that at Azusa Pacific University, which has had a high turnout rate.
Currently, a three-on-three basketball tournament and dodgeball league are in season.
Registration for cornhole, co-ed flag football, powder puff football, ultimate frisbee and a six-on-six volleyball league is open online via imleagues.com.
Registration for spike ball will be open between Feb. 26 and April 8.
“I never played sports in high school, but I’m interested in playing here because it’s something I can do with my friends and a good way to stay active,” senior communications major Fatima Jimenez said. “It can be hard to commit to the gym so this program is an awesome way to promote fitness and student engagement.”
Arreola attends every game, supervises and uses referees, but she says it is student-ran and student-led. The program is free for all students and the games go from 10 p.m. to midnight.
“I’m excited to see where this program goes,” Arreola said. “We are growing every semester, but I eventually want to see every dorm, organization and club participate and join a league and get involved. Failure is not an option.”
Brian Rios can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.