Relieving Stress During Exams

Stress can be a good thing. Yes, you read it here first; stress can be a good thing, but only if you learn to use it as strength.

Eustress is defined by a University of Mississippi study as “positive stress that improves performance, motivates and focuses energy.”

Reaching a point in which the stress you’re dealing with becomes a motivating factor in studying and maintaining a high self-esteem can become beneficial for your grades, appearance and overall health.

Distress is the opposite of eustress, defined by the same University of Mississippi study as “negative stress that can cause anxiety or cause for concern.”

The concept of distress and eustress is prevalent on a college campus. Depending on your perspective, the pressure of this time period can either bring the best or the worst out of a student.


This time of year is critical for the typical NC State student. With exams, projects and presentations due, the stress is at an all-time high from Main Campus to Centennial Campus.

Dealing with the stress is pivotal to attaining academic goals. Preserving the body physically can prepare the body for the mental rigors of the exam period.

At University Recreation, we offer four activities in particular that allow participants to turn distress into eustress. Here are my favorite activities:


As an activity predicated on building flexibility and balance, yoga is perfect for dealing with stress. According to a recent study from the MGN College of Education in India, “Seven weeks of regularly doing poses, practicing yoga breathing and participating in mediation practice reduced students’ stress levels, which translated into better academic performance.”


The facts stated show the effectiveness of yoga in relieving distress and building eustress. Utilizing breathing techniques to clear the body of negative energy while training the muscles to adapt to various positions almost replicate the process of retaining information.

When you study, you try to learn the unknown and master the material. The similarity to yoga is scene through the repetition and the adaptation of the mind and body to its environment, making yoga a fantastic activity for exam week.


Boxing has long been heralded for its ability to build cardiovascular fitness while releasing stress that can way a person down. The combination of the two opens up the mind to receive information through releasing the bad vibes that can plague the thought process.

“Studies have shown that working out can help relieve depression, stress, anxiety, and anger. When you get your adrenaline going, your mind starts going, too” said renowned psychologist/physical therapist Elizabeth Lombardo.

Through a sport that drains you of negative emotions and clears the mind, the strenuous process of studying can become easier, especially when it comes to retaining information with a clear mind.­


High Intensity Interval Training. The words that spell out “H.I.I.T.” all are vital descriptions of this activity. Built upon the principle of maintaining a high rate of activity in a short span of time, H.I.I.T. is a fantastic way to build fitness while clearing the mind.


The vast combination of workouts and intervals provide a mercurial realm of activity that forces the participant to build a sharp, attentive mind state. This activity evolves through an individual workout in a similar manner to the material you learn in class.

Within a curriculum, the information grows in difficulty and quality of time. H.I.I.T. replicates that system through a rise in tougher activities as you get acclimated to the initial exercises. This model of progression can get a student into that mindstate of climbing their ladder to success.


In a recent study conducted by Speedo and Ipsos MORI, swimming was discovered to be a perfect activity to wind down the stress of the day. A quote from the study stated, “Over two thirds of those surveyed feel that swimming can have a positive mental impact, with 70% agreeing that it helps them to feel mentally refreshed.”

Recognized as a perennial sport in regards to building fitness, swimming is perfect for allowing the participants to trade their negative energy for positive, clear-minded thoughts. Through the rigorous strokes necessary to progress within the water, swimming provides a great workout with minimal force to the joints.

Getting in water overall is a great feeling. It creates a weightless feeling for the participant that almost immediately alleviates the pressure on the mind that can carry on to other parts of the body. Swimming is perfect for clearing the mind and relaxing the body during exam week.

As the semester wraps up, all of our hard work from the past four months will come together. Group projects, presentations and those dreaded exams stand no chance if you can maintain eustress and avoid distress.

With strenuous nature of the last two weeks of December, we hope to provide you with an alleviating alternative to you day. To learn more about what we offer, visit

Think and DOminate,


November Club Sport of the Month: Men’s Soccer

Globally recognized as the world’s game, recently, soccer has grown substantially in the United States. Building off of the energy of tournaments like the World Cup and video games like EA Sports’ FIFA, soccer is becoming a major sport in a country that is enamored with football, basketball and baseball.

At NC State, soccer has maintained a great following through the legacy of our men’s varsity team, currently ranked top 25 in the nation. This team has produced players such as former US Men’s National Team member Pabli Mastroeni and current Carolina RailHawk Nazmi Albadawi.

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Our men’s club team has followed suit, building a program predicated on building great student-athletes and fantastic soccer players. Check out our interview with the team below.

UREC: How is the season going thus far?

So far we have had a very good season; we have yet to lose a conference game and we look like strong contenders for Regionals. As the season goes on we have only been getting better and that is something that is very promising.

UREC: What are you guys looking forward to the most this school year?

As the regular season comes to an end, we are really looking forward to Regionals. If we qualify, we will be going to Florida on Halloween weekend and hopefully we can have a strong showing there. We have not qualified for the past couple of years, so this is something that we are really looking forward too.

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

The most important thing would be commitment. We have players from all over the place with many different playing styles so when a new player comes in it is important that he is going to all the practices in order to get better team chemistry. The more committed the player is the better adapted he can become to our playing style, and the bigger impact he can have for us on the field.

UREC: What is the strongest attribute of this team on the field?
Our strongest attribute would have to be our teamwork. We work very hard every practice to make that we are all on the same page when it comes to game time, and that shows. We are very strong when it comes to attacking and defending as a unit.

UREC: Typical practice looks like?
At the beginning of practice the first thing we do is get a warm up going, this usually consists of a couple laps around the field just to get our legs going. After this we incorporate some technical work with some fitness as well. Once we finish this we move on to some small sided games, some possession drills, or a scrimmage. We also try to make things more interesting by having the losing team do more fitness at the end of practice.

UREC: During travel, what are some of the best memories you can recall?
The best thing about traveling with the team is the time we get to spend together. The team meals we have are usually what everyone looks forward to and is always a good time. And of course whenever we stay at a hotel we seem to also find a way to get a little soccer game going, usually in the halls or in the parking lot.

UREC: What is a staple tradition your team has?
Our biggest tradition is going to the Clemson tournament. Every year Clemson has a tournament, and this is something that we always look forward too as a team. This is the time we get to spend the most time together as a team and it really helps us come together and get to know each other, especially the newest players that some might not know as well.

UREC: Being a student-athlete has benefited you in a multitude of ways, top benefit is?
Being a student-athlete can be something that is very demanding at times. With school being very stressful at times with exams and projects, the best thing for me about being a student-athlete is the relief that is gives me. I know that no matter how busy the week is, at least twice a week I am going to have a couple hours where I get to relax and do what I love. It helps me relax and get away from all the stress of school, and that is something that is very important I think for everyone; everyone needs to do something that gets you away from the stress and re-energizes you.
UREC: Lastly, what makes men’s club soccer at NC State special?
What makes club soccer soccer so special is the bond and friendships that it creates. There is something about being part of a team that is inexplicable. We have people come from so many different places and cultures that are brought together by this one sport that we love. Club soccer takes soccer and creates bonds that go way beyond that, it creates awesome friendships. Club soccer has given me friendships that will last a lifetime, and that is pretty special.

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:

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: 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,


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,


Senior, Justin Mumford: NC State to Ohio State


My dear friend and fellow Program Assistant, Justin Mumford, received an incredible offer earlier this month. Since November, Justin has applied to several graduate assistantship positions within recreation, but when Ohio State offered, he knew he had found the perfect match.

Below you can read my interview with Justin, in order to learn a bit more about his personal journey at University Recreation, along with his graduate assistantship search.

How long have you worked for University Recreation?
: I began working for University Recreation the first semester of my Freshman year, so it has been nearly four years now.

What is your current role at University Recreation, and what previous positions have you held?
Justin: My current role with University Recreation is that of the Reservations Program Assistant and a Facility Supervisor.  Through my Program Assistant position I am able to work extremely closely with the Facility Operations and Special Event teams to process all facility reservations from start to finish as well as act as a leader within the Department.

What leadership opportunities have you pursued while working at University Recreation?
Justin: As my time with University Recreation has progressed, I have always aspired to make and leave a positive impact.  I have been fortunate to work with a lot of great people and to walk into really great situations. The first step in my own personal growth and development as a leader was to become an Event, and eventually a Facility Supervisor. These two opportunities spring boarded me into what I believe is the single most influential and important experience of my Undergraduate career: the position of Reservations Program Assistant.

As a student leader within the department, I began to understand the larger picture and gained an interest in the field of Collegiate Recreation.  Ultimately, this interest pushed me into leadership opportunities within the National Intramural-Recreation Sports Association (NIRSA) where I currently serve the state of North Carolina as State Student Leader.  Prior to becoming the State Student Leader, I served NC State as an Engagement Coordinator where the aim was to inform those on our campus of the field of Collegiate Recreation. In addition to my experience within NIRSA, I was also nominated by our Director to be the University Recreation Representative on the newly formed Advisory Board.

What is a typical workday look like for you?

Justin: My typical day as the Reservations Program Assistant consists of communicating with clients and determining the feasibility of the facility requests we may receive.  For us, clients can be those outside the university, departments on campus, and student organizations.  On any given day I can find myself making phone calls for more information regarding a request for space, answering emails to follow-up on questions regarding an event, and setting up meetings to discuss logistics for an event.  I really enjoy the fact that I am able to communicate with so many people and have a very active role in the planning and success of many events.

Outside of my communication with clients, I also work extremely closely with all of our professional staff within University Recreation to ensure they have the space they need for their programs or meetings.  Health and Exercise Studies is also a large portion of my role as we ensure they have the space they need for classes.

What is your favorite part about your job?
Justin: My favorite part of the job is the opportunity to communicate and meet so many different people.  For each event that we host, we get to meet a whole new cast of people.  Sometimes these can be administrators, such as deans or provosts, they might be other student leaders, or they might even be external users from across the country.  I really enjoy being able to meet all of the different personalities and to help play a part of their successful event.

Why did you decide to apply for a Recreation Graduate Assistantship?
Justin: Since working with University Recreation, I have been extremely lucky to be surrounded by professionals who have not only helped me grow, but made me aware of the opportunity that the field of Collegiate Recreation represents.  Since gaining a better understanding of what this field represents, I knew it was right for me. I’m decided to apply for a Recreation Graduate Assistant position so that I can fine tune my skills and gain experience as well as a Master’s Degree to ultimately prepare me for a professional position within the field. For me, the daily interaction with students and the focus on student development is a huge reason why I gained such an interest.

When you look at the impact you are able to have as a professional in the field, it goes far beyond just the staff you lead. Recreation departments across the country are serving an increasingly important role in the overall success of students on campus, and I’m extremely excited to be a part of that.  Pursuing a career on a college campus is certainly a huge plus as well.

In what ways do you believe your time at NC State has prepared you for Graduate School and making the transition to Ohio State?
Justin: I believe my time at NC State and University Recreation will play a significant role in future success in my transition to Ohio State.  At NC State University I have been able to get a broad experience through the opportunities I have been given.  Most importantly, the leeway I have been given to make critical decisions, communicate effectively, and lead a staff will be instrumental in the transition. NC State University Recreation has also developed and polished my work ethic. The high expectations set forth to provide a positive experience to everyone who comes through our doors will also be an important element to my success both in Graduate School as well as a future GA.

Why Ohio State?
Justin: Why not Ohio State? Going to a school with such a prestigious reputation across the collegiate recreation field and country as Ohio State was truly a unique opportunity for me.  I was able to form a good relationship early on with my future supervisor as well as others who are already at Ohio State, which played a large part.  I also have family in the area, which will be great to be close to. Overall, I feel extremely comfortable in what my role will be and that I’m completely prepared to find success in that role. The experiences I will gain as the Member Services Graduate Assistant will compliment what experiences and skills I have already gained while still providing me new opportunities to grow. Most importantly, the academic program of Higher Education and the GA position really complement each other well.  There is a ton of support between the academic program and the rec department which will put me in an environment where I feel I will be able to continue my own personal growth. Ohio State Rec Sports carries a lot of weight on-campus, which will provide me with a lot of unique opportunities. Everything considered, it was without a doubt the best fit for me.

What are you looking forward to most about your GA position?
Justin: While I have been given a lot of leeway at NC State, I am most looking forward to having the opportunity to run my own program and lead my own staff. I will be able to manage staff at an entirely different level which I am extremely excited for.  In addition, having the opportunity to oversee an operating budget and control the processes which take place throughout Member Services will present a great opportunity for me to grow and gain new experiences.

What worries you most about your move to a different state?
Justin: I think with any move or change, it is going to be tough transitioning to a completely new set of friends, a completely new environment, and a completely new living situation.  I’m not sure that I am necessarily worried as much as excited. However, just unknown, at this point, can be intimidating at times. The concern of whether you will fit in or find the right place to live would probably be my greatest worry, but I really am more excited than anything else.

What is your ideal job after your two-year graduate assistantship?
Justin: After completely my Graduate Assistantship, I hope to remain within the field of collegiate recreation. Ideally I would like to become a Facility Operations Coordinator for a Recreation Department. This position would allow for me to stay within operations, which is what I have come to love, as well as give me direct oversight and leadership to a large team of student staff. This would definitely be the ideal job, however a Member Services or Event position will definitely also be on the table.

Congratulations Justin! I extremely proud of you, and I know everyone here at NC State University Recreation are thrilled for you as well. You will forever be a part of the Wolfpack, but there are many amazing opportunities ahead of you at Ohio State. Best of luck to you!

Forever Backin’ the Pack,

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!