Sport and Rec programs make digital jump

Editor’s note: Visit the official Western COVID-19 website for the latest campus updates.

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Separated physically doesn’t mean sacrificing physical activity and community engagement thanks to Sports and Recreation Services moving many programs online.

“Moving our programming to support a digital experience was paramount in this unprecedented time,” said Christine Stapleton, Director of Sport and Recreation Services.

For the first time, Stapleton’s team has rolled out a variety of online programs, including:

  • Staying Active at Home, live activities such as yoga, pilates, dance, kickboxing, even interval training. These are open to the entire campus community;
  • Campus Rec Reachouts, launching this month, a series of recorded videos posted to YouTube with themes such as Massage Mondays, Trainer Tuesdays, Wellness Wednesdays and more. These are open to the entire campus community; and
  • E-Sports Intramural Online Tournaments, launching this week, double-elimination competitions for players of NHL20, FIFA20 and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Registration is now open.

Digital was always part of the unit’s strategic planning, Stapleton said. “However, the turnaround time to ramp up this programming was definitely a lot faster than we had anticipated. I am proud of the work our team is doing.”

The pandemic has not slowed planning, as Sport and Recreation Services continues eyeing Summer 2020 and Fall/Winter 2020-21.

“It is important to us that all Western students continue to feel connected to the university,” Stapleton said. “Part of maintaining that connection is for us to provide the supports they have come to count on – be it online or in-person – in order to stay active and relieve stress in these difficult times.”