Ryerson Recreation working to keep students active despite COVID-19 challenges

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By Casidie Prebianca

Ryerson Recreation (RU Rec) is keeping students active during the pandemic with new challenges, activities and programs. 

RU Rec, a program that provides spaces for students to engage in physical activity, is adapting to the pandemic by supplying students with ways to stay physically and mentally active, according to Andrew Pettit, director of recreation, equity and active well-being at Ryerson Recreation. This includes activities like intramural esports, virtual fitness classes and short movement activities for class breaks.

While facilities are closed, students can still access activities and programs provided by RU Recreation from home. 

MOVE Everywhere: Online is a place where students can find some of this content to keep themselves active. Whether it’s a live Zoom fitness class, pre-recorded video, esports leagues or movement breaks, RU Rec has several different options that work for a variety of skill levels. 

The program is trying to stay as current as possible with regular, new and free content and programs that can be accessed anywhere, said Pettit. 

This semester, RU Rec added intramural esports leagues to MOVE Everywhere: Online. Students can participate in FIFA 20, Rocket League, Among Us and Ramily Feud tournaments across platforms. 

Intramural social leagues have also been added. Students can engage in a variety of remote movement activities and challenges at their own pace, such as a running challenge, step challenge and nine-week movement challenge.

RU Rec is also helping students connect through neighbourhood meetups that comply with the region’s health and safety guidelines. Participants will spend time meeting each other, then engage in stretching circles followed by light physical activity. When not in lockdown, meetups take place once per week for one hour in a predetermined location, according to the RU Rec schedule. 

“Bottom line, physical activity is so critical to student well-being and academic achievement, and we’ll continue to meet students where they’re at, whether back at the Recreation and Athletic Centre and Mattamy Athletic Centre or over a Zoom call,” Pettit wrote in an email to The Eyeopener

Pettit also said RU Rec plans to keep most online activities open even when school is back to in-person activities. 

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