Let’s Play! Recreational sports at the U

Let’s Play! Recreational sports at the U

By Undergraduate Admissions

Let’s Play! Recreational sports at the U

By Undergraduate Admissions
Not everyone can compete at the Division I level, but with the recreational sports program run by the department of Wellness & Recreation, any Miami Hurricane can play.

Check out our interview with Tom Soria, director of the recreational sports programs, about club and intramural sports and the newly launched esports program. 

The University offers both club and intramural sports. What is the difference between the two?

Intramural sports focus on sporting events held on campus between students, faculty, and staff. Club sports offer instructional and competitive formats and give teams a chance to travel and compete against club sports teams at other universities. 

Among both club and intramurals, what are the most popular sports that students join on campus?

The most popular intramural sports are flag football, basketball, and soccer. For club sports, scuba, tennis, soccer (men and women), and basketball (men and women) are all popular choices.

What skills can a student gain from participating in club or intramural sports?

Both programs offer plenty of opportunities to develop collaborative skills like communication, teamwork, sportsmanship, and conflict resolution. Ultimately though, students can really develop leadership qualities and apply what they learn in the classroom into a team setting.

How does joining a sport help first-year students integrate themselves into campus life?

Getting involved in intramural and club sports is a great way to meet people and create new friendships with people who have a common interest. I think it also helps develop school spirit and creates a sense of pride to represent the University. You also benefit from the support system of a team, which can help you navigate through your first year on campus and beyond.  

How can participating in either clubs or intramurals help students with their mental health?

In addition to having the support system of teammates, playing sports promotes physical activity, which increases mental alertness, self-esteem, and energy levels, while reducing anxiety and cognitive decline. 

Do students need to have any prior experience to join a team? Do they need to try out?

Intramurals does not require any prior experience, as the program offers participants the opportunity to play competitively or recreationally in a variety of sports and activities. There are many different divisions offered such as Intra-Fraternity Council (IFC), Men’s, Women’s, Pan-Hellenic, and Co-Recreational leagues.

Experience levels for club sports might be required depending on the club. Some clubs operate as a strictly competitive team, while others offer instruction for inexperienced members, along with competition for advanced players. These programs promote opportunities for students to engage in sporting events, activities, and competitions in the state of Florida, the Southeast, and throughout the United States. 

What does the Esports programming include? How can a student participate?

The University’s Esports program currently offers various opportunities for students to be a part of the program. You can try out for teams to compete against other universities in games like Rocket League, Valorant, and Leagues of Legends. There are also opportunities for students to become streamers or shoutcasters for UM teams.

The Esports program also created a Discord server for all students to build connections with their fellow ’Canes in topics like music, live sports, memes, and gaming. Our Discord community also hosts game nights and weekly challenges that are open to all. 


Recreational sports are a great way for new ’Canes to get involved with the campus community, make new friends, and improve overall health and well-being. Interested? Check out all the programs available at wellness.studentaffairs.miami.edu.