NC State Club Sports Help Students Gain Culturally Diverse Experiences

Have you ever had the urge to do something that would broaden your horizons as a student? What if I told you that the opportunity to learn more about different cultures and the things people living in those cultures choose to do in their spare time was right here at University Recreation?

Each Year, University Recreation offers an array of club sports… 44 to be exact! The overall mission of each club sport is the same: to provide an organized, competitive and instructional experience for N.C. State students to participate in for the duration of their time at school here. Even so, each and every club sport brings something different to the table.

“NC State University Recreation has a very well rounded list of club sports that are offered, students can find just about anything that will interest them.” says University Recreation’s Competitive Sports Coordinator Daniel Payne.

To meet the multitude of interests that makes up our very diverse student body, University Recreation helps to implement club sports that are not all necessarily the “norm” in the United States. These club sports have an international flare and they come originally from and are mainly practiced in countries all over the world. So, if you are looking for a new cultural experience as well as a way to stay active each semester, check out the following club sports offered by University Recreation.


Originating in England, Rugby is a game that combines both the strategy and rules of soccer and football. Today, rugby is commonly played in the United States, as well as many other countries worldwide. The club team at NC State was founded in 1956 and promises to teach club members the value of teamwork, time management, and leadership. There is both a men’s and a women’s club rugby team. For more information on the NC State club rugby team, please click here.


When the Irish, Scottish, English, and Dutch-Germans settled the Appalachians in the 1700’s, clogging was soon born. Each of those cultures practiced a certain type of folk dancing, but their settlement together and newfound freedom in America prompted them to combine each style of folk dancing into one: clogging. The club clogging team at NC State began in 1989 under the direction of Marsha Lester and has been very successful in competition ever since. For more information on becoming a part of the club clogging team, please click here.


Aikido was founded in 1942 by Japan Native, Morihei Ueshiba. He came up with this form of self-defense by combining his religious and political beliefs with his martial training. The NC State Aikido club provides instruction based on the traditional Japanese martial art principle of non-resistance. This club is open to all- beginners and advanced. If you are interested in learning more about the club Aikido team at NC State, please click here.

“Of the clubs that have an international flare, aikido is a little bit different than most of the other sports” says Payne.  “The Aikido club focuses a lot on instruction and education about their specific sport.”

Though those three club sports are only a small portion of those offered through University Recreation, they are some of the most culturally different club sports offered. Each of them offers a peak into a different culture that you may not be able to get anywhere else. In addition, each of these sports is geared to help you stay physically fit as well as involved as a student here. Becoming a part of a club sport can mean broadening your horizons, meeting a brand new group of people, holding a leadership position within the club and more. It is up to you, however, to pick a club sport, reach out to those who run the club and learn more in order to become a part of something that could truly teach you so much.

“Participating in a club sport is a great way for students to stay involved in a sport or activity that they are interested in without pursuing it on the varsity level,” says Payne.  “Being involved in a club sports provides a sense of community for those participants as well as develops them as student leaders.”

 Shout out for dear old NC State!