Welcome Back Pack

Welcome back NC State! Coming back to school is chaotic, and everybody has a long to-do list. Between moving in, ordering textbooks, and figuring out where all of your classes are, there’s a lot to do. In all honesty, fitness is probably not the first thing on everyone’s minds. An active lifestyle is crucial to managing stress and staying healthy though.

Luckily, University Recreation has plenty of ways to stay active and it’s easy and fun for students to participate. University Recreation has daily classes, frequent trips and special events, personal training, and of course the gym. We know how stressful college is and we are committed to the health and wellness of students and have numerous programs to help the Wolfpack family stay fit.


Group Fitness Classes

University Recreation offers a variety of unique Group Fitness classes. Certified instructors will guide you through the workout, and classes range in type and intensity. Some examples of classes include cycling, yoga, Cardio Dance, and H.I.I.T. You can find days and times of classes on the schedule. Don’t forget to sign up ahead of time on IM Leagues to reserve your spot. There are over 150 classes offered every week so there’s something for everyone.

Specialty Fitness Classes

If you’ve never heard of Specialty Fitness classes, it may be because they used to be called Small Group Fitness. These classes can cater to an individual’s unique fitness goals in a more personalized setting than Group Fitness classes. Specialty Fitness classes are taught by certified instructors with plenty of expertise to help you achieve fitness milestones whether you are trying to get in shape or stay in shape. More information on Specialty Fitness can be found here.

Carmichael Gymnasium

Carmichael is currently being renovated, but don’t let that scare you off from coming to the Recreation Center to work out. The Playground is at the top floor of the Recreation Center and is filled with a variety of cardio and weight equipment. The Recreation Center also has rooms where Group Fitness classes are taught every day.

Intramural Sports

If you’re looking for a fun way to stay fit and spend time with your friends or meet new ones, maybe you’ll enjoy participating in Intramural Sports. University Recreation offers league sports as well as special events. Some league sports include flag football, tennis, flag football, indoor soccer, and outdoor soccer. Several of the special events are cricket, pool battleship, and the Monster Dash. The registration periods vary, so be sure to check the schedule here for registration dates and event dates.


Fitness Challenges

This fall there will be several fitness challenges hosted by University Recreation. The first is the Fitness Challenge: Pull-Up. It will be at the Recreation center on September 7 from 5:30-6:30 p.m. The second is the Fitness Challenge: Outdoor Obstacle Course, which will be on Miller Field on October 6 from 5:30-6:30 p.m. The third is the Fitness Challenge: Burpee and it will be at the Recreation Center on November 10 from 5:30-6:30 p.m.

Outdoor Adventures Trips

Our Outdoor Adventures department has a variety of exciting trips coming up this fall. If you need a change of scenery and a break from the stress, consider signing up for one of these adventures. The prices are all-inclusive and the trips are guided by a knowledgeable Outdoor Adventures employee. If you have questions about the trips you can stop by the Outdoor Adventures desk in the Recreation Center. The trips range in activities to accommodate different interests, including kayaking, hiking, yoga, and climbing. A few of the upcoming trips are: Yoga and Hike at Stone Mountain on Saturday, September 12 from 6:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m, Day Canoe on Neuse River on Sunday, September 13 from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m, and Linville Weekend Climb in Pisgah National Forest from Friday, September 18 – Sunday, September 20. These are just a few of the Outdoor Adventures trips offered this fall. You can find out more details about these and the other Outdoor Adventures trips here.


Bench For Breast Cancer

If you like to lift, Bench for Breast Cancer is a great way to put your strength to good use for charity. This is the third year that University Recreation has hosted this event. Participants can register from Tuesday, September 1 until Thursday, October 22. Bench for Breast Cancer will take place on Saturday, October 24 in the Recreation Center.


Good luck with the beginning of classes and don’t forget to join University Recreation to stay active!

Run with the Pack,


Club Sport of the Month: Equestrian Dressage

NC State University Recreation is excited to highlight NC State’s Equestrian Dressage club team as July’s Club Sport of the Month. This team won numerous titles during the 2014-15 school year and plan to build even more memories and acclaim this upcoming school year.


To look back on the successes of last year and the exciting future of NC State’s equestrian dressage, here’s our interview with team captain, Ashley Grandis.

University Recreation: How was last year’s club season?

Ashley: Wonderful! Last year, we won Overall Team Champion at our NC State IDA Homeshow. We competed at the St. Andrews University IDA Show, placing ahead of the host team and an additional Reserve Team Champion title. We won the Regional Team Reserve Champion for Region I during the 2014-15 year, an award we hadn’t won since 2008. In addition to our competitive success, we also earned the Community Service Award through Club Sports 2014-15 for our devotion to CORRAL (an organization that pairs rescued horses and at-risk girls for therapy) as our service project for the year.

University Recreation: What are you guys looking forward to the most?

Ashley: We are looking forward to gaining new members and growing our team at a new facility, SaddleTree Stables for the 2015-16 year. Greater scheduling flexibility, more affordable rates for our members, and a larger selection of horses to ride should lead us to even more success.

University Recreation: As the new members come in, what is the most important attribute necessary to becoming a valuable team member?

Ashley: The most important thing to becoming a valuable team member is dedication not only as a rider, but for all aspects of the club. For example, we have different events throughout the year such as bi-weekly meetings, clinics, fundraisers and community service events that are necessary components of being a member of the team. It is vital that members understand the importance of actively participate in these components in addition to the weekly riding lessons and various competitions.


University Recreation: When does the season start? How long is it?

Ashley: We start recruitment in August with RecFest during the first week of school. After that we host our interest meeting and tryouts a couple days after RecFest. After tryouts we solidify our team roster, and begin weekly lessons the first week of September. We typically have about 5-6 competitions throughout the year. We train and compete both Fall and Spring semesters, excluding Winter Break and Spring Break. Our season wraps up mid April, ending with Nationals if team members qualify.

University Recreation: What is your favorite thing about the team?

Ashley: This team consistently promotes professional, social, and personal growth. From a professional standpoint, the team provides a spectrum of leadership roles from being an active member all the way to taking on officer positions such as President. I finally was able to show on my resume the love I have for this sport throughout my life. Socially, the team creates life long friendships that make our time at NC State even better. I have found my “equestrian family” on through this team. The cherished memories I’ve shared with this group will always be with me.

University Recreation: Typical practice looks like?

Ashley: A typical practice consists of a weekly lesson with four riders per group. Riders are assigned horses by our coach, Jan Jacobson. Members will tack up his or her horse for the day and head to the riding arena for an hour lesson. Typically during a lesson, Jan will take turns working with different riders individually to give riders added personalized coaching. Typically, a few weeks before any competition we practice riding through our dressage tests.


University Recreation: What is a tradition your team has?

Ashley: As mentioned before, we all enjoy Mexican food and haunted trails. During the Fall we have a lot of competitions that sometimes end up pretty close together spanning from September through early November. Its become a tradition to go to a haunted house or trail at every weekend show when we travel. Additionally, our team frequents El Cerro pretty much every time we get back into town after a day show.

University Recreation: What does a rider need to do to join your squad?

Ashley: In order to join the team a rider needs to attend RecFest and/or communicate via Facebook or email found in the club sports directory to inform current officers of their interest on the team. Potential members should attend the interest meeting and those who chose to take the next step will attend tryouts at our equine facility. Those trying out will pay a small fee for the use of the facility, coach and horses for the day approximately $15. Tryouts will be based on skill, and also availability per division level. After tryouts those who made the cut will pay a small fee for club dues to join in order to be a member for the year.


The Wolfpack equestrian dressage club’s commitment to success in the arena and in the community is evident. A multitude of honors paired with an impact for the greater good showcases their passion for sustained excellence, which we are excited to follow.

Additional contact with the equestrian dressage team can be done through email at: equestriandressage-club@ncsu.edu.

Student Employee Highlight: Challenge Course

Located six miles from Central Campus in Schenck Forest is NC State’s Course. The course offers a variety of programs designed for team building and leadership development. The Challenge Course consists of a Low Course and a High Course that stretches up to 40 feet tall.

First and foremost, the Challenge Course Staff is there to keep all of the participants safe. But the staff also works together to help participants grow individually and collectively as a team so everybody may enjoy their experience.

We caught up with Challenge Course student employee Katie to learn more about the Challenge Course and its staff….



University Recreation: Why did you decide to work at University Recreation? And why the Challenge Course in particular?

Katie: As an incoming freshman I did the Outdoor Adventures Wolfpack Bound camping trip and also spent one spring break on another Outdoor Adventures trip, both times where Jason (my current boss) was our trip leader. He’s such a genuine person and someone I quickly grew to respect. I told him I wanted to work the high ropes course and after a while it’s where I ended up.

University Recreation: What is it about the outdoors that excites you?

Katie: One of my favorite aspects of the outdoors is being on the water (swimming, kayaking, canoeing, etc.), but overall the atmosphere is just so different and requires such a different skill set. Chasing dual engineering degrees, I am constantly in a very technical environment where precision and timing is everything, so it’s definitely a nice break to go on a hike and take it all in.

University Recreation: What is your favorite activity of the Challenge Course?

Katie: I have three favorite activities at the Challenge Course: Icebreaker games, The King Swing element on the high course (definitely one of the more challenging elements of the course), and Debriefing, where we come together at the end of the day/activity and talk about how we felt as a group and individuals.

University Recreation: Describe what training for your position is like.

Katie: New hires have more than 40 hours of training before they start on the course. Before anyone hits the course everyone is trained in equipment/lingo, essential knots, how to belay, safety, low course games, and CPR/First Aid. Trainees spend a significant amount of time on emergency rescue procedures and safety.

University Recreation: Describe a typical day at work.

Katie: A typical day at work is a blast. We arrive about an hour before any groups get to the course, go over our schedule for the day, and make sure the course is ready to go. When a group arrives, we introduce the course and ourselves, and we talk about our Five Finger Contract and Challenge By Choice. Then we begin with icebreakers, next are the low course activities, and finally the high course activities. After the activities, the group will fill out a survey on their way out and we spend time putting away equipment, cleaning up, putting away gear, and we have a debrief as a staff before we secure the course.



University Recreation: What is the most valuable skill or lesson you have learned working for University Recreation in your current position?

Katie: One of the biggest things for me is learning how to handle the unpredictability in stride! Yes we have a plan, but that plan could be out the window with the tip of a hat, and as a facilitator, I have had to learn how to handle change.

University Recreation: How have you grown professionally since working at University Recreation?

Katie: The Program Assistants are there if we want help professionally; whether it is talking through interview situations or looking over a resume. I am comfortable interacting with those in positions above mine.

University Recreation: What would be your recommendation for students considering working at the Challenge Course?

Katie: It’s an amazing job and you will definitely get what you put into the position. Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty because hard work won’t go unnoticed here.

Challenge Course staff members assist people in overcoming their fears, building self-confidence, and expanding their comfort zone. They also help establish an environment of cooperation and trust through their enthusiasm, knowledge and skills in order for groups to meet specific goals and desired outcomes. At the Challenge Course, employees have the opportunity to help and inspire others as a part of their daily work.

If you haven’t had the chance, I recommend you pay a visit to the Challenge Course and its staff. Who knows? Maybe you’ll find a new interest…

Pack your Pride,


Student Employee Highlight: Marketing

Marketing is an instrumental part of NC State’s University Recreation system. Everything from social media to photography is created by a team of fellow Wolfpack members dedicated to showcasing what University Recreation has to offer.

All of the departments at University Recreation work to put a spotlight on our resources and facilities. Here at marketing, students of various skills and majors come together to promote healthy, active lifestyles through print and digital work, culminating in maximal participation by our student body.

One of University Recreation’s longest-tenured Marketing Assistants, Samantha, granted us an interview to learn more about the marketing department. Through this interview, she gives some insight into her role at University Recreation.


University Recreation: What is your favorite thing about working at University Recreation?

Samantha: My favorite thing about working for UREC is my team in the student workspace. I have the best people surrounding me, and there is never a dull moment. It’s a great creative environment.

University Recreation: Describe your role at University Recreation.

Samantha: As a Marketing Assistant, I do a lot of different things. Primarily I have worked as a Graphic Designer where I create materials to help advertise programs and events for UREC. Recently, I have been handling more things on the PR side, tweeting, posting to Facebook. It is a lot more about administration but has been a giant learning experience for me but has taught me a lot about time management and connecting with my team members.

University Recreation: Why is marketing important to University Recreation?

Samantha: Without the marketing we do, a lot of the special events or programs University Recreation puts on wouldn’t be nearly as well attended. There is so much going on and everyone has such busy schedules, that if we didn’t advertise the way we do people might not realize how much UREC is offering on a weekly basis.

University Recreation: How has your work here impacted your professional growth?

Samantha: By working here I have learned what I love about graphic design and what I want to carry into my professional career. I have watched older students grow through the student development programs and go on to get “real world jobs” and seen how the Professional Staff at UREC really foster our growth as students and professionals through critique and teaching us values that exist in the real world. Things like deadlines, time management, accountability, and customer service.

University Recreation: Graphic design is imperative to our work, where do you draw the inspiration for your work?

Samantha: Behance.com and other professional sites are a great resource. My boss Adam is always the first one to reference a professional in the industry when he understands what I am aiming for with a project, and is always telling me to google certain designers or projects other recreation departments have done.


University Recreation: Greatest memory working for University Recreation?

Samantha: We went to the Challenge Course and then had dinner at Noodles and Co. as a team this past spring, and that is when I got a lot closer with a lot of the student staff. It was the first time we all had a chance to come together and just have fun instead of working under the pressure of school and deadline hanging over us.

University Recreation: How would you describe your fellow marketing staff at University Recreation?

Samantha: They are all so funny! The workspace is plastered with inside jokes. And of course, they are all so talented. Everyone has their strengths, be it in videography, web development, or design but I am always amazed at the rate at which everyone’s skills are improving and growing from pushing themselves to try new areas of marketing.

University Recreation: What is the typical day at work consist of for you?

Samantha: Some days I am plugged into a project, and am really in the zone so I have all of the Adobe Creative Cloud Programs open and tons of files all over my computer. Other days, it’s a lot about organizing projects, answering emails, and browsing for inspiration. The hardest part about working in a creative field is fighting artist’s block. Fighting through the block is always

University Recreation: What are you looking forward to the most as the fall approaches?

Samantha: This fall I am studying abroad in Prague with the College of Design! It will be my first semester of college without my UREC team. I will miss everyone, but I hope to come back in the spring inspired and ready to work on awesome projects.


Think and DOminate,


Benefits of Yoga

Within life as a college student, stress is eminent. In order to fight the negative effects of stress, many ways to relieve stress and get away are spoken of. My personal favorite method is yoga.

As someone who strives to stay fit, yoga gives me the ability to stay physically sharp while training to control my breath and balance. This combination creates a space in which I can let go of the exams and assignments plaguing my mind while gaining many positive physical and mental attributes.

Studies have consistently shown yoga to be an avenue for personal growth. Research has encouraged everyone from elementary school students to the elderly to try yoga. The reasons for the encouragement is evident from physical prosperity to mental unplugging, the benefits are endless.

To provide insight into the impact yoga can have to your health, here are some of the benefits, physically and mentally, of participating in yoga:



A recent University of Maryland study highlighted the various physical benefits of yoga, calling the activity “a mind-body therapy that connects the body, breath, and mind to energize and balance the whole person”.

Throughout the analysis of yoga and its origins, the study emphasized yoga’s ability to help those with conditions such as anxiety, stress, tendinitis, and even long lasting lower-back pain. Along with the benefits to those with physical conditions, yoga also promotes general athleticism that impacts the normal day.

Growth in range of motion and proper posture are two benefits that stood out to me. As you go through the day, range of motion and posture are important to avoid small injuries and accidents. In fact, they are so important to every individual, we often forget their impact on our daily lives.


Yoga has been shown to greatly improve the participants’ physical capabilities, which in turn prepare us for our day-to-day lives. Improvements in strength, coordination, and flexibility match the improvements in range of motion and posture. These core attributes are instrumental in successfully dealing with a strenuous day.

Think about it, on the way to class on a rainy day, coordination and posture integral to staying upright. Those bricks on campus seem as if they are actively attempting to trip you up. Proper coordination will teach you to maintain a strong core and balance yourself effectively as you attempt to avoid embarrassment.

However, let’s say you did slip on those bricks. Flexibility along with strength would be necessary to combat the fall. If those two attributes were intact, you would have the tools necessary to save yourself from the fall and remain upright.


Along with the physical benefits, tranquility and peace of mind are cultivated through yoga. As you progress through a normal day, these mental attributes are used to efficiently go through the motions and progress as a scholar.

Yoga’s ability to calm the body and brain has led to people using the activity for educational purposes. This has led schools in the United States to implement yoga into student programs on the pursuit of improving academic performance.

As reviewed in a Wall Street Journal article, a recent study conducted by California State University, Los Angeles found yoga to increase positive student behavior, health, and academic performance.

The study proved many things, specifically yoga’s ability to reduce feelings of helplessness and aggression, which helps overall emotional balance. The control of emotional balance gained helps to increase the likelihood of information retention and confidence in the classroom.


The results can be attributed to yoga’s reliance on using breathing exercises to center the mind and the body. This facet of yoga increases focus and concentration in order to align the body and the breath. In turn, students of all ages find themselves better prepared for the rigors of class.

As a rising senior, yoga has helped me build the confidence and emotional stability to chase my goals for senior year. One lesson that has made my life easier is the utilization of breathing.

The breathing exercises in yoga taught me how to relinquish stress via the release and intake of air. Something as inconspicuous as breathing has given me total control of the way I think, leading to more rational and impactful decisions during my summer courses. Through it all, yoga’s mental benefits are continuously finding their place to benefit my day-to-day life.



As you enjoy your summer and begin to ponder on different ways to improve your health, consider yoga. The activity is proven to build strength on multiple levels, from mental to physical, as both are necessary to succeed in college.

The opportunities to participate in yoga here at NC State are growing. From the normal level Yoga Flow to the intense Xtended Yoga, the Wolfpack are afforded various opportunities to participate in this amazing activity.

This summer, University Recreation has introduced Stand-Up Paddleboard Yoga. As a variation of yoga, this activity is taught on paddleboards atop one of our pools. The lack of consistent stabilization to the ground forces the participant to concentrate on balancing him or herself, creating a fun challenge while attaining the yoga training. This yoga class doesn’t require paddle-boarding experience but does encourage previous yoga experience.

To learn more about yoga at NC State and other group fitness classes, follow this link.

SUP Yoga4

Think and DOminate,


How to Have a Fun and Active Summer

With all the stresses of classes, exams and projects behind us it’s time to start enjoying your summer! So grab your beach towels and don’t forget your sunscreen because it’s going to be a fun one. While we all love a lazy day in the sun, it is so important that we stay healthy and active all summer long. Being inactive leads to more problems than you might imagine. All the stress of class behind you? Think you deserve a lazy summer full of Netflix and binge snacking? Think again! The University of Minnesota, shares an interesting fact, stating that, “lack of physical activity is associated with increases risks of, anxiety, stress and feelings of depression.” So while Netflix is a tempting way to pass the summer, you will only increase your stress and anxiety that you thought had passed with your classes, exams and the school year.

A government website, Fitness tells us that, “only about one in five homes have a park within a half-mile, and about the same number have a fitness or recreation center within that distance.”


That being said here on NC State’s campus you have access to a facility with more than 350,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor space, more than 125 group fitness classes and a variety of other programs offered all summer long. But of course, being healthy and active can be hard, and require a good bit of commitment, so how, in this busy life do you lead a healthy and active life? One helpful strategy developed by an organization known as Reach Out gives four tips to help you with this. They tell us to

  • start gradually
  • make it social
  • make it part of your routine
  • make it fun

You don’t always want jump into the cold pool, but to slowly get used to the temperature step by step, the same goes for physical activity. Start doing little things, even small increments of physical activity can have huge effects on your health and wellness, researchers at the Harvard Nutrition Source have learned, “Some studies show that walking briskly for even one to two hours a week (15 to 20 minutes a day) starts to decrease the chances of having a heart attack or stroke, developing diabetes, or dying prematurely”. This slow start also keeps you from pushing you past your limits and causing an injury or illness, which can occur easily if you haven’t been very active in the past, according to the Center for Disease Control’s research on physical activity.

You don’t have to participate in a triathlon, or a marathon to be healthy and active. The best way to be active, is in a way that you can enjoy and do it socially. At NC State University Recreation, we offer a variety of great ways to stay active in fun and exciting ways, to keep you healthy and active all summer long. Our Fitness and Wellness area offers 53 group fitness classes for Summer Session I, that is 53 ways you can stay active. Our Competitive Sports area offers five different intramural sports teams for Summer Session I and four for Summer Session II, providing you with a place for fun and competition amongst your friends.

DSC_0210But it doesn’t stop there, there are so many ways you can stay active over the summer, outside of these fantastic opportunities offered here. Next time you need something from the store, walk there. Not only are you being active, you’re helping out your environment, in The Medical Journal of Australia it states, “Walking is highly efficient in its use of urban space and energy, it rarely causes injury and it gives streets vitality and personal security. Many car trips are quite short, less than 2 km, indicating that walking could be a feasible alternative and contribute to reducing the pollution from a cold-start vehicle travelling only a short distance.” And this is only one simple way to improve your life, while also impacting the lives of those around you.

Next time you’re relaxing in the sun, take a dip in the pool or maybe swim some laps. Swimming has been said to be a great full body workout, on government website, Better Health, “Swimming is a good all-round activity because it: keeps your heart rate up but takes some of the impact stress off your body, builds endurance, muscle strength and cardiovascular fitness, helps maintain a healthy weight, healthy heart and lungs.” It keeps you cool and does so much for your body and its’ health, but best of all the Aquatics area is having a swim to Wilmington challenge. Swim the distance from Raleigh to Wilmington, 133 miles, whether you water walk, aqua jog, or swim the distance you can receive a first edition University Recreation swim cap.

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Why not hop on your bike, feel the wind in your hair and enjoy the scenic ride? University Recreation can even provide you with a bicycle through our Outdoor Adventures area. The Outdoor Adventure Equipment Rental Center is open Monday through Friday from 12:00- 6:00 P.M. with a program called WolfWheels that allows students to rent bicycles on a daily, weekly, monthly, or semester basis.These are all simple ways to turn your everyday routine into an everyday active routine, while still having a fun, relaxing summer.

Keep Calm and Howl On


Student Employee Highlight: Outdoor Adventures

University Recreation employs more than 700 students per year, in many different positions and departments. We reached out to Josh, from Outdoor Adventures and asked him to give his insight on being involved as a Trip Leader for University Recreation. Every semester, Outdoor Adventures arranges expeditions all over North Carolina where students can learn the skills they need to do everything from rock climbing to snowboarding and everything in between.


Josh(pictured) and his fellow trip leaders led a group of students from the First Year College on a trip to Rocky Face, NC to learn the ropes of rock climbing.

University Recreation: What does your position entail as a Trip Leader?

Josh: As one of the Trip Leaders for Outdoor Adventures, my duty is to lead students on outdoor activities including skiing, kayaking, canoeing, caving, rock-climbing, mountain biking, backpacking and camping. Every semester we make these activities accessible to students at NC State that are looking to be challenged or are looking for new experiences.

UREC: Why did you choose to work at University Recreation?

Josh: I grew up by the beach in Wilmington, North Carolina. When I became a student at NC State I found new opportunities to challenge myself and try new things. I went on a couple of Outdoor Adventures trips and fell in love with the supportive atmosphere of each one. Outdoor Adventures makes activities like skiing, canoeing and rock-climbing accessible to every student, and getting to professionally lead students on trips like these makes for a great experience.

UREC: What does being an Outdoor Adventures Trip Leader mean to you?

Josh: To me, being a Trip Leader for University Recreation means I get to be in a position of student leadership where I get to share something I love with students who may have not had the same opportunities as I have had in the past. I love being able to organize a trip and put enough planning and educational instruction into it to ensure that anyone can come on a canoeing trip and by the end of it know all the strokes and skills that they need to go canoeing again. The fact that I can help others learn all the important skills the need to know before they start their own journey outside means a lot to me.


UREC: What is the most valuable skill or lesson you have learned working for University Recreation in your current position?

Josh: On a trip there are a lot of things that need to be planned and tasks that need to be completed before you can pack everyone into the van. Being engaged in that process has really taught me the importance of organization and forethought. I have learned that the more organized you are such as picking your gear or planning your camp setup ahead of time can really benefit you in the long run. For every minute we save early on means an extra minute of time for someone to learn a new skill, or gain a new experience they can be proud of.

UREC: What has being a Trip Leader helped you learn about the professional world?

Josh: Working at University Recreation has opened me up to the idea of risk management. Activities like backpacking and rock-climbing do have some amount of risk and a good Trip Leader needs to understand these inherent dangers to lead their group effectively. By better understanding risk management and all the safety precautions we have in place, I can make sure everyone on our trip has an enjoyable and memorable experience that they can look back on fondly.

UREC: What would be your recommendation for students considering a Trip Leader position or other positions with University Recreation?

Josh: I recommend to anyone interested in becoming a Trip Leader to participate in the Wilderness Leadership Program. As a prerequisite to being able to apply as a Trip Leader for Outdoor Adventures students must participate in this weeklong trip. During the Wilderness Leadership Program students spend a week backpacking and rock-climbing and gaining experience in risk-management, problem solving and leadership while making great friends. I would also recommend not being afraid to challenge yourself and try something new that may make you nervous. In Outdoor Adventures we call that principle “Challenge by Choice.”


Having a job on-campus provides more benefits that just being a source of income. USA Today found that students with on-campus jobs are not only able to fill their resume with a plethora of relevant experience and skills, but also benefit from the flexibility of their employers on campus who know that classes and grades come first. Students who are employed by their university can be more committed to their studies compared to a student who leaves campus to work.

The convenience of being able to work on campus is unbeatable. Rather than spending time and money driving to work, those who work on campus have the convenience of being able to walk to work in between classes.

For many students, college is a time of change that fosters a new sense of independence as many of us living on their own for the first time. Students who have part-time jobs are able to learn how to manage and budget their income early without much risk so that they are ready to be fully autonomous when the time comes.

Students, especially freshman, often benefit from being engaged in their campus. The independence that comes with being employed on campus enriches the social lives and education of students by providing new friendships, challenges, and experiences for them while staying in the context of one’s learning environment.

Stay red, Wolfpack.




Club Sport of the Month: Men’s Basketball

NC State University Recreation would like to recognize our men’s basketball team as the highlight of May’s Club Sport of the Month. This past school year the squad consistently competed on a regional and national level. The 2015 NIRSA National Basketball Tournament in April closed their season out.

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In order to learn more about NC State’s men’s club basketball team, here’s our interview with team captain, Benjamin Simons.

University Recreation: How was last year’s club season?

Benjamin: The last year’s club season went decent. Our overall record for combined teams was 19-17 on the year with wins over every club team in state. The club split up into two teams for the spring semester and won the 17th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Tournament at Wake Forest University. Dunking for Deah was a new 3 on 3 tournament sponsored by our club team in honor of former NC State student, Deah Barakat. This was a huge success raising over $3,000 for his charity alongside our team winning club sports event of the year. We didn’t perform as well as we would have liked to in nationals but we plan to make a big run in the national tournament next year with the majority of players returning.

UREC: Coming up on a new school year, what are you guys looking forward to the most?

B: Our club is looking forward to bringing in 4 to 6 new players who are very good basketball players alongside people. After that we’re looking forward to winning local tournaments plus competing in nationals.

UREC: As the new members come in, what is the most important thing necessary to become a valuable team member?

B: The most important thing to become a valuable team player is getting along with the current players on the team. Team chemistry on and off the court is an important aspect for our club.

UREC: When does the season start? How long is it?

B: The season starts in September with tryouts and runs all the way into mid April with nationals. Our season consists of 8 months.

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UREC: What is your favorite attribute of this squad?

B: My favorite thing about our team is how we compete against other in-state schools. We traditionally have a strong record against in-state universities and hope to keep this going.

UREC: Typical practice looks like?

B: A typical practice consists of playing pick-up for 2 hours every Wednesday night. I try to keep practices laid back but next year we will look to make changes during practice time.

UREC: During travel, what are some of the fondest memories you can recall?

B: The fondest memories would be my sophomore year as our team finished in 3rd place at James Madison University’s fall tournament. 32 club teams across the east coast came to compete in this excellent tournament and to finish 3rd was a huge success. That was one of the most talented teams I’ve played on but the friendships made from that year is another fond memory of mine.

UREC: What is a staple tradition your team has?

B: Our team doesn’t have a staple tradition but something I would like to happen is for The 3 on 3 Tournament, Dunking For Deah to become a new tradition annually hosted by our club team.

UREC: Being a student-athlete has benefitted you in a multitude of ways, top benefit is?

B: We’re no varsity athletes by any stretch but a benefit would be is meeting other club athletes at tournaments and establishing new friendships.

UREC: What does a player need to do to join your squad?

B: A player needs to have skill out on the basketball court but a good attitude as well. I look at skill significantly but it all starts out with being a good team player plus person. They’re a lot of good players at State but players who are talented at basketball alongside being a genuine person have a good shot at making our squad.

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This team has done great things on the court and through this interview, the importance of character and dedication to basketball is evident. With tryouts coming in September, University Recreation will be hosting information for men’s club basketball here.

Additional contact with the men’s club basketball team can be done through email at: basketballmens-club@ncsu.edu

Healthy Study Breaks


Exams are here, and so is all of the stress that comes with them. Don’t forget that study breaks are a key part of productive studying. Here at University Recreation we have an abundance of ways you can give your mind a break while doing something fun that’s healthy for your body. Take some time off from the library and discover the exciting things University Recreation has to offer.


At University Recreation:

GLOWGA                                                                                                                    You’ve probably heard of flow yoga, power yoga, and hot yoga, but have you ever heard of glow in the dark yoga? On April 30, University Recreation will have Glowga, a yoga class taught in the dark and lit with glow sticks. You don’t have to be a yogi to come to this event-beginners are welcome! Glowga will be at 8:30 p.m. in basketball courts 9-11. There are still a few spots left, and students can sign up on IMleagues.com.

OUTDOOR ADVENTURES                                                                                                         NC State University Recreation also has an Outdoor Adventures department to accommodate a wide range of interests. Outdoor Adventures leads trips throughout the school year, so keep an eye out for the 2015-2016 schedule.DSC_0139

Equipment Rentals:                                                                                                     Planning an adventure with your friends during your exam week downtime? You can rent equipment from University Recreation Outdoor Adventures. Rentals include tents, kayaks, canoes, and more. Rentals are affordable for students and the Outdoor Adventures staff can answer any questions you might have. Going outside and getting active is a positive way to beat stress and clear your head. The Outdoor Adventures desk is located in the Recreation Center.

Climbing Wall:                                                                                                                         In our very own Carmichael Gymnasium there’s a rock climbing wall. The climbing wall is adjacent to basketball courts 9-11. Rock climbing is a fun way to be adventurous without trekking to the great outdoors. We have University Recreation staff who will help you learn how to rock climb as well as the equipment you will need.

GROUP FITNESS                                                                                                          Group Fitness classes are an excellent way to relieve stress and get a great workout. A wide variety of classes are taught at University Recreation to appeal all kinds of different interests. Classes offered include yoga, cycling, Zumba®, to name just a few.

Be sure to check our website for any changes to the Group Fitness schedule during exams and sign up for classes beforehand on IMleagues.

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If you like to do your own thing, Carmichael Complex is here to help students get active and work fitness into their busy schedules. The facilities include 5 workout rooms with cardio machines and weight equipment, indoor and outdoor basketball courts, an indoor track, two Olympic sized swimming pools, and tennis courts. You can rent equipment such as tennis racquets and basketballs also. Whether with friends or by yourself, there are so many ways to get fit here at University Recreation whenever it is convenient for you. Be sure to check the University Recreation website for the facilities’s adjusted summer hours.

CENTENNIAL CAMPUS                                                                                                             If you’re at Hunt Library studying, consider getting some fresh air and studying outside. University Recreation has a disc golf course as well as recreation fields at Centennial Campus. There is also a 2.5 mile trail to take a walk or run around the scenic Lake Raleigh and surrounding campus. Along the trail there are five different stations where you can stop and do quick strength workouts.

In Raleigh:

Aside from all of the incredible things University Recreation has to offer, there are hundreds of fun and healthy study breaks you could take around NC State. Lake Johnson, Lake Wheeler, and Pullen Park are nearby. There are miles and miles of trails to run, walk, and bike. Exams are stressful, but taking study breaks that are healthy for your mind and body will recharge you. Take advantage of the beautiful spring weather and all of the fun things there are to do in Raleigh!

Good luck and happy studying!

Run with The Pack,


Student Employee Highlight: Fitness

At University Recreation, our fitness employees are instrumental to helping the Wolfpack reach their fitness goals. As sources of information on fitness, these employees guide fellow students to their goals through guidance, motivation, and ultimately, support as they reach their fitness goals.

Elizabeth has been a fitness student employee for more than 2 years. Her work has led helped her grow as a fitness instructor while helping members of the Wolfpack student body attain fitness goals.


Here’s our interview with her:

University Recreation: When did you realize that fitness was a passion?

Elizabeth: I began taking hot yoga classes when I was 15 years old, it started as a fad that all the cool kids did but for me the ‘fad’ never stopped. Yoga became a way to relax and de-stress after a day of school and what not. Through that, I became motivated to impact lives with the wonderful tool that is exercise. As a student at NC State, I fulfilled this dream of impacting fellow students’ lives through fitness.

UREC: What is your favorite form of exercise?

E: In the past yoga has been my favorite form of exercise, it is the perfect way to forget about any and all obligations and find some inner peace. In the past few years I have began to enjoy running, lifting weights and TRX. I believe in having balance in a workout regimen rather than only focus on one aspect or method of training. This has allowed me to be able to give students a multitude of options when training.

UREC: What motivates you to help other people                                                  ?

E: I think that my interest in fitness has given me confidence, and I’m not just talking about physical appearance. Fitness has given me confidence to improve and succeed in school, work, and friendships. It has made me certain about who I am am, I want to share this opportunity to gain confidence with anyone who will listen. Fitness provides benefits not only physically, but in all facets of daily life. As I had that epiphany, I made sure to spread that knowledge about the benefits of exercise. That is what motivates me daily.


UREC: What is the typical day at work like?

E: A typical work day at University Recreation is a blast, its something that I look forward to. I am always greeted with smiling faces from fellow employees as well as participants! My fellow University Recreation employees are always supportive and motivating! 

UREC: How has your position with University Recreation allowed you to grow professionally?

E: My as a group fitness instructor at University Recreation has been my first opportunity to teach fitness! Therefore, I have learned how important it is to be punctual, organized, and prepared! This will be beneficial not only if I choose to go into fitness as a career, but in any direction I take my path. Getting the opportunity to communicate with the various unique students at NC State has taught me how vital it is to communicate consistently.
UREC: What is the most valuable skill or lesson you have learned working for University Recreation in your current position?
E: I have learned to expect the unexpected, and how to react quickly and efficiently to any situation! These skills along with the professional skills I have developed are beyond what I expected. Coming in, I just wanted to help my fellow students in any way I could through fitness. University Recreation has allowed my potential to grow as I have developed skills that will help me advance in various avenues!

The benefits of having a fitness instructor are endless. From cultivation of motivation to more consistent result, instructors can be an instrumental part of reaching your fitness goals. An article conducted by Johnston Health of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill reinforces the benefits of an instructor.

The two points of the article that stuck out to me, the ability that an instructor has to create better results and how their guidance can help the participant overcome plateaus.

As a part of the job, instructors work to create regimens that take the participant to the next level. This helps fitness levels grow exponentially fast as the participant is guided through exercises that challenge the body.

Overcoming plateaus has always been difficult for anyone striving to reach their fitness goals. Group fitness instructors have a distinct ability to change workout routines and motivate their clientele to surpass the roadblocks to fitness success. This motivation is cultivated through getting a group on the same page on their path to fitness.

Further research conducted for the American Council on Exercise through a collaboration of Indiana University and Texas A&M University professors, highlighted the influence of an instructor to an exercise regimen. This study monitored more than 40 people who exercised consistently, half of the sample size had instructors.

The research showed that lifestyle behaviors were shown to improve through structured exercise sessions that instructors cultivated for their clientele. 60 percent of the study participants demonstrated evidence of health-behavior change, majority of the 60 percent fitness instructors guiding their progression.

Employees like Elizabeth promote positivity and consistency while working out. Studies conducted have shown how instrumental an instructor can be to the progression of fitness. For the Wolfpack nation, University Recreation offers many ways to work with instructors.

Group fitness regimens including yoga, pilates, Zumba, and more paired with the ability to even have a personal trainer gives the Pack a multitude of resources. Check out what we offer here.

Think and DOminate,