Building relationships through sports


My name is Jordan Luz and I am 24 years old. I recently graduated from the University of Hawaii-West Oahu with a B.A. in Humanities with a concentration in English. During my time at UHWO, I was a part of the newspaper staff and even served as the editor-in-chief. I’m currently working on getting into graduate school to pursue a master’s degree in English with a concentration in Cultural and Asian Pacific Studies. 

There is no doubt that the best friendships are forged through sports. Your teammates are your partner’s in crime, your band of brothers and are the very ones who will be there for you when you fall.  Does this sound familiar? That’s because it’s exactly what friends would do for each other.

Friends like those are hard to find.  However, by joining any type of intramural sports program, you are bound to form new relationships with many different students. The same could be said about joining any other club on campus.  But what set’s the intramurals sports program apart from the rest of the pack, is that you constantly have to work together as a team.  Teamwork sets the foundation of a friendship because it allows the trust in each other to build over time. Although learning to work as a team may take some time for others, it still provides the feeling of knowing that someone will have your back when times get tough. When it comes to sports, it’s not a “me” thing, it’s a “we” thing.

The constant communication is key in any type of sport and also in friendships as well. Think about it, trust and communication is important in all types of relationships. The best way to expand those aspects are through competing in sports.  Whether it’s through volleyball, basketball, or football, you are always constantly talking to your teammates.  A simple “I got your back” to a “Watch out for the screen on the left” can make a big difference.  I can’t think of one sport where communication doesn’t make a difference.

It’s not just about crafting one’s communication skills, but also the ability to give and receive constructive criticism.  For example, if one of your teammates recognizes something that you’re doing wrong or something that you could do better at, they’ll let you know.  At first, you could be against it and just ignore their advice.  However, if you take the time to think about what they said and realize that it could help your team win, you’ll come to understand how beneficial it was for both you and your teammate to communicate. This can also translate into real life relationships too.  By being able to give and receive constructive criticism to and from your fellow peers, it creates a more healthy relationship and strengthens the level of understanding between each other.

The rapport that’s built with your teammates strengthens your relationships with them outside of the game.  There could be someone on your team that you were never friends with before but now have become closer than ever thanks to playing with each other on an intramural sports program. It’s not just building close friendships with your teammates, but it also translates into forging new relationships with others outside of the club. Taking the skills you learned from the intramural sports program, you’ll find it a bit easier to open up to others and make some new friends.

The beauty of sports is that it really does bring people closer together. Therefore, I encourage you to go out and join any type of intramural sports program that your school has to offer!  You’ll thank me later.

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