How to be athletic without playing varsity
Words like “varsity” and “competitive” might wave red flags in the eyes of many students, particularly those who enjoy participating in sports and other exercises, but may not be so inclined if it’s performed at a very high, competitive level. The Capilano Blues varsity teams are composed of high-level performing athletes who are just quite a bit better at what they do than you and I.
For those who aren’t at the collegiate sports level of fitness and athleticism, but still enjoy playing the sport they love, not being on varsity doesn’t mean the end of the world.
There are many recreational programs offered at Capilano University. More surprisingly, they’re usually free – or affordable.
The shiny hardwood floors of the Sportsplex aren’t reserved only for the school teams. The gym is open for use throughout the week and equipment is also provided. Indoor soccer, basketball and racquet sports are the main sports offered in the gym, although there are no reasons why you can’t play Red Rover and Octopus, other than the fact that you’ll have to run.
One of the flagship programs available on campus is yoga. For a small fee per session ($5 for students and $7 for faculty) members of the university community can achieve their zen in CapU’s surprisingly neat multi-purpose room.
“My classes are hatha-inspired, which focus on alignment, flow and breath,” said Anahita Barryman, yoga instructor and second year international business student. “Each class runs for an hour and follows a sequence with a different focus each time you come,” she added.
For Barryman, the benefits of yoga are more than just getting in some physical activities during school days, “It’ll help you de-stress, get your blood flowing, get your body moving. And also you get to meet people you probably otherwise wouldn’t have met.
“Everyone is at a different level in their practice and that’s okay,” she added. “As long as your willing to put ego aside, be present, have fun and laugh a little while you’re at it, you’re doing it right. So come in and be willing to play a little in your practice. My classes are a judgement-free zone.”
One of the seemingly more obscure programs offered in CapU’s pool of recreational activities is the aptly-named movement class. Taught by kinesiology student and movement coach Logan Quinn, the class focuses on reaping the combined benefits of gymnastics, aerobics and meditation. “The concept goes back to gymnastics,” said Quinn. “A gymnast is basically the kind of person who would excel in any sport because they practice every possible permutation of movement — they won’t be great, but they’ll be better than the average person.”
Movement class focuses on maximizing flexibility by putting practitioners in the most organic form of motion. For example, Quinn emphasized the benefits of practicing the same movements that a baby would do. As the crawling motion provides a full range of motion and extension on an individual’s back, “it’s rehab for students with back injuries,” he said.
This semester, the course will start with general movement. In November, students will get to practice gymnastics and circus arts and in December, Quinn suggested the possibility of either creature or animalistic movements or stunt choreography.
On top of his responsibilities as a student and as a movement coach on campus, Quinn also coaches at Vancouver Circus School. “As a movement coach you kind of have to study various disciplines and part of that means I need to coach both actors and athletes,” he said.
CapU’s recreational programs also include karate classes and table tennis. Beyond that, all that remains is room for expansion and participation. “The more the better. I mean, to my understanding all of these classes are student-run, which I think is amazing,” said Barryman. “It’s a really cool way of getting people to integrate their school life with their work life and share a little bit of their passion with others.”
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