Intramural Sport at Tulane: Ping Pong gains more popularity

07/10/18

By Caitlin Conley Unigo Campus Rep at Tulane Tulane offers a club and intramural sport for every type of student. From rowing, with its grueling workouts and 5:30 a.m. wakeups, to rugby, where bruises are badges of honor, to ping pong, where intensity ranges from friendly to fierce. Sports are largely student directed and wax and wane based on student interests. In recent years the resurgent Tulane Ping Pong Club has soared in popularity and every Thursday night the Reily Center is full of the sounds of ping pong balls on paddles. Most matches are friendly, though things can get intense. “We just have a lot of fun but people do get really competitive” said ping pong captain, Amy Hsu. “Some kids even bring their own high quality paddles.” Matches range from friendly games between talkative friends to intense tournament style competitions that draw small crowds. Team members said they like that success in ping pong has less to do body-type and strength and more to do with agility and hand-eye coordination. “A tiny, agile player can beat a macho tough guy any day” Hsu said. Members said they enjoyed playing a good game and meeting new people. “We get all types of students, lots of international students and a lot of students who’ve never played before,” Hsu said Like other intramurals at Tulane, the Ping Pong Club is easy to join. “We have open practices and anyone can join whenever,” Hsu said. Kevin Morgan, a sophomore, said that many of his first friends freshman year were fellow ping pong teammates. “It’s a low key, fun way to meet people.” he said. Though Division I sports are widely ignored at Tulane, the sprawling intramural and club sports program offers more than 20 different activities. “Intramurals are pretty popular and there are different sports every season,” Morgan said. Some, like ping pong, have only one team with competition amongst members. Larger sports, like flag football and soccer, field fraternity and sorority teams, residence hall teams and teams of friends and host tournaments and playoffs. Hsu said that the best thing about Tulane intramurals is the variety of offerings. “Ping pong is laid back, rowing’s intense, and flag football and soccer are somewhere in between. As long as you’re interested there’s probably a sport for you,” she said.

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