NIRSA Week emphasizes international activity

GVL / Emily Frye 
Grand Valley State Rec center hosts a free Zumba night on Wednesday Feb. 24, 2016.

Emily Frye

GVL / Emily Frye Grand Valley State Rec center hosts a free Zumba night on Wednesday Feb. 24, 2016.

Sanda Vazgec

It’s midterm week at Grand Valley State University, which means students are spending most of their time studying for exams and working on projects. Among the chaos, it can be difficult to handle the academic stress.

GVSU is introducing a healthy opportunity for students to relieve some of that stress by teaming up with the National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association to provide a week of recreational sports and fitness events to encourage students to have fun while being active.

NIRSA is an organization that focuses on the advancement of recreation and wellness at the higher education level. The organization provides educational and developmental opportunities in fitness, wellness, intramural and club sports and advocates for healthier collegiate communities and overall worldwide health.

The NIRSA Week in Recreation is taking place Feb. 22-26 and is designed to provide GVSU students with opportunities to get involved in unique recreational sports and fitness classes at no cost.

“Physical activity is so important for self wellness and it can be a great way to release stress,” said Emily Walker, a physical education major at GVSU. “I think it’s great that we get a week to try out new ways to be active and take a mental break from studying.”

Events included Aqua Zumba, a low-impact, high-energy aquatic exercise using the natural resistance of water to help tone muscles, and the Global Games bubble soccer tournament on Monday.

On Tuesday, the climbing center hosted ‘90s night, where students dressed up in their favorite ‘90s attire to scale the climbing walls. A spin marathon was held on the rec center courts as well.

Students could drop into a Zumba party with Louie the Laker on Wednesday and on Thursday, students could donate gently used athletic clothing and equipment in the rec center lobby all day long.

The Greek intramural basketball championship game will be held on Friday at the Grand Rapids Deltaplex Arena. The game will precede the Grand Rapids Drive vs Westchester Knicks game.

Tip off for the intramural game will be at 4:30 p.m. followed by the Drive game at 7:30 p.m. Students can purchase tickets at the campus rec office for $12 in advance or $15 the day of. The ticket grants admission for both basketball games.

“NIRSA does a lot to encourage campus involvement,” said Glenn Fitkin, supervisor of the rec center. “To have a full week of events for all GVSU students to participate in is pretty incredible for us.”

Fitkin said the events are a great opportunity for students to get involved on campus and try out activities they wouldn’t normally take part in.

Students must present their GVSU student ID in order to attend the events. For a more detailed list of guidelines and event times, visit