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Join in on the fun and shake off some of those winter cobwebs by taking the opportunity to get involved with intramural or community sports in honor of National Recreational Sports and Fitness Day!

History of National Recreational Sports and Fitness Day

The background of this day can be traced back to the early 1900s when Ohio State University and the University of Michigan began their intramural sports departments. This worked to encourage every student to be involved with sports and recreation, even if they don’t participate on the official teams for the school.

Another important event occurred in 1950 when the National Intramural and Recreational Sports Association (NIRA) was founded. On February 22 of that year, Dr. William Wasson, an African American scholar, gathered twenty black men and women intramural directors to establish the National Intramural Association (NIA), which would eventually become the NIRA. This organization now boasts more than 4000 members on at least 700 campuses throughout the United States.

This important event in history has paved a way for the recognition of the value of sports and recreation in education and throughout life. National Recreational Sports and Fitness Day, also called “National Rec Day” for short, is celebrated on the anniversary of this monumental collaboration. The hope for the day is to celebrate the positive benefits, affecting the physical, emotional and mental health, that come from involvement with recreational sports and fitness activities.

Today, dozens of college and university campuses are connected with this event each year, including well-known schools such as Princeton University, Bowling Green State University, University of Texas at San Antonio and many others. National Recreational Sports and Fitness Day offers tons of opportunities to get involved and stay fit!

How to Celebrate National Recreational Sports and Fitness Day

Get involved, get connected, and enjoy some sporty fun by celebrating National Recreational Sports and Fitness Day! Show some love for Rec Day with some of these ideas for participating:

Get Active with Recreation, Sports and Fitness

The most important factor involved with National Recreational Sports and Fitness Day is to make a commitment to staying active and getting involved with movement and activity. For those involved on college campuses, this might be through intramural sports or activities like joining a bowling team or connecting with an ultimate frisbee team.

Those who aren’t currently involved on a college campus can still get connected with this day, though. This might also include joining a local sports team like a sand volleyball league or an indoor soccer league. There really is no limit to the way recreational sports and fitness activities can be celebrated on this day and throughout the year!

Grab Some Rec Day Gear

Folks who are members of the NIRSA and are interested in celebrating National Recreational Sports and Fitness Day with some merch can order it through the NIRSA website. T-shirts in all sorts of collegiate color combinations can be customized through the organizational website for teams and groups of students, faculty and supporters.

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