The 2021 Fall semester at Sonoma State University (SSU) saw a spin on intramural sports. Instead of the traditional offerings, the Campus Recreation Center will host three different sport tournaments.
Shelbi Long, the director of SSU Campus Recreation, shared with Campus Rec Magazine about the ins and outs of the change.
CRM: Why did you decide to host the tournaments of singles table tennis, billiards and volleyball?
SL: It’s been an interesting year and a half for us at SSU Campus Recreation. We have been a small but mighty team. And we got even smaller when they reassigned two of our full-time staff members. One of those was our Intramural Sports Coordinator. We knew students coming back wanted to engage in recreational activities. With another staff member, we decided to focus on tournaments for the students as we weren’t going to be running leagues in the fall semester. These tournaments felt like they would get the most participation as they have been popular in the past. In addition, they lead to a safe play environment with our participants.
CRM: What did it take to plan these sport tournaments?
SL: It took resources as the current staff who is our Outdoor Programs Coordinator is managing these tournaments and didn’t necessarily have all the knowledge to run a tournament. He’s doing a wonderful job at learning and knowing what it takes to run a program like this. Outside of this, we need time to discuss the style of tournament, market and promote, register students, and run the tournament. We have been happy with how this has all worked out.
CRM: What has been the student response?
SL: We have been pretty successful at our individual tournaments and get a good amount of student sign ups. We are glad we can promote non-traditional sports for our student community and get students in the Rec Center who may not have thought this space was for them.
CRM: What advice can you give in putting together these types of tournaments?
SL: Give yourself time to think about the small stuff because it’s just as important as the big stuff. Also, promote, promote, promote.