Club Sports returns with virtual fair, new safety guidelines

MizzouRec invites students to join their favorite clubs, and teams will have to submit a new safety procedure to MizzouRec in order to begin practicing.

Mizzou Club Sports announced its return to in-person practice through a virtual fair on Feb. 3. Students can join their favorite club but must follow MizzouRec safety guidelines.

MizzouRec is working with individual clubs to revise their standard operating procedures to ensure student safety. Once approved, clubs can begin in-person training, said Laura Salerno, associate director of programs at MizzouRec.

“We are really excited to offer this new level of approved activity for clubs,” Salerno said. “Although it is significantly limited, it does permit our clubs to safely connect and have in-person engagement while attending to their physical well-being.”

Before practicing, students will have to show their “good to go” screens on the CampusClear app. MizzouRec staff will oversee scheduled training for each club to ensure social distancing and safe conduct. Mizzou Club Sports is responsible for scheduling all practice times and locations, Salerno said.

“A club like Quidditch puts in their requests, location, approximate times of practices, days of the week and so forth,” Salerno said. “We will take that and compare that to other clubs. Not all clubs will get exactly what they want, but we will do our best to be able to spread it out.”

Salerno encouraged students interested in joining a club to fill out the Mizzou Club Sports interest form, which helps MizzouRec connect students with leaders of various clubs.

“Some students are super excited about a sport, and they may not know about a club team that we already have through Club Sports,” Salerno said. “Being able to share that information and get them connected to the officers and to the sport has been exciting, even with the limited activities that we have had.”

Mizzou Club Quidditch will begin practicing next week and is currently accepting new members. The game of Quidditch comes from the magical world of Harry Potter and combines basketball, dodgeball, rugby and a bit of wrestling, according to the MizzouRec website.

Quidditch practice will attempt to look and feel as normal as possible, said club president Sydney Boeger.

“There will be no contact, which is going to be a barrier for us since we are a full-contact sport,” Boeger said.

Team practices will still include warmups, drills and instruction on the game with safety in mind. The club’s goal is to create an inclusive atmosphere where everyone is having fun, Boeger said.

“We are a total gender-inclusive sport, so everyone is on the field at the same time,” Boeger said. “We don’t discriminate, and we have a place for everyone.”

Club vice president Vincent Reyes said the team atmosphere of Quidditch is what makes the game so memorable. Winning the Quidditch regionals was a highlight for him last fall.

“When we won, there wasn’t a single person that was left out of that celebration,” Reyes said. “It doesn’t matter who you are, where you came from, how much you contribute — if you contributed, you are a part of the team.”

For more information on joining or meeting dates, students can follow Mizzou Club Quidditch on Facebook or Twitter.

Mizzou Club Swim will begin in-person practices at the MizzouRec in a few weeks, said club president Nick Roehm.

“We are going to have two people per lane, and they are going to have to set up on opposite sides of the lane,” Roehm said. “How many lanes we are able to get reserved will determine the number of people at each practice.”

During a normal season, the social atmosphere is important to Club Swim, Roehm said. Swimmers will have to stay socially distanced during practice this semester.

“Usually in our practice, we try to incorporate a lot of social aspects — we do relays and games, things to make it fun,” Roehm said. “We won’t be able to have close interaction; we will have to be more calculated with how we do things.”

Joining Club Swim is one way to get involved with a student organization on campus, while continuing to swim in college. Many of the club’s members swam in high school and joined to stay fit, Roehm said.

“Joining the swim club has been easily one of the best things I’ve done since coming to college,” Roehm said. “It’s a really great way to stay connected with the sport.”

Prospective participants are not required to try out to join the club, and those of all skill levels are welcome. For more information on future practices, follow Mizzou Club Swim on Twitter or Facebook.

“We have some people that are really competitive; they have been swimming for clubs all of their life,” Roehm said. “Then we have people who are there for the social aspect or the exercise aspect, and they just like to go practice to get away from their usual academics or work life. We really are a place for everybody from all swimming backgrounds.”

Edited by Sophie Chappell | schappell@themaneater.com

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