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Go Out and Play!

Getting physically active can result in increased overall wellness as well as increased physical fitness. Check out the suggestions below to get you started.

Don't Hibernate! Stay Active in Winter
Colder weather and limited hours of daylight can bring out the natural instinct to hibernate and stay inside, even in the most active person.  Finding the time and energy to workout in your already busy days can also be an issue. Regardless of how you maintain your physical activity level, the important thing is that you do.

Here are a few tips that Recreational Sports offers to students:

Mix It Up – After finding the activity that fits your schedule and physical activity needs, you should add some variations to it, like adding weight training, circuit training, or spice it up with a fitness class (U-Move or MHealthy) to keep going.

Stay Positive – The winter months can be long, but staying positive is critical to staying active. A positive attitude will help workout time go faster and leave one feeling renewed afterwards.

Some students may get the “winter blues,” or more severe seasonal affective disorder (SAD). SAD symptoms include low mood, lack of energy and increased sleeping and eating.  If you experience low mood during fall or winter, you can consider talking to Dean Baum or Director Nealy. Be sure to check other resources in this site, too.

Find the Fun – There are many opportunities on campus for students to find the fun in physical activity and enjoy the weather.  Outdoor Adventures offers cross country and downhill skiing, ice climbing, winter camping, dog sledding, snowshoeing which are all terrific ways for students to stay active during the winter months.

There are three recreation centers on campus that are available for you to use for free.  We encourage you to use the campus recreation resources to maintain your physical activity level throughout the winter months.  It will help you stay healthy in body and mind, and to be motivated for the coming spring.

Ann Arbor Parks and Recreation

From bicycle trails to canoe liveries, Ann Arbor has plenty of outside activities to keep you interested, including an expansive bike path system and municipal facilities for canoeing, wind-surfing, and year-round ice skating and swimming. You'll find some of the offerings on the Parks and Recreation website.

Get out in nature
There are lots of beautiful places nearby if you want to get out and enjoy nature. Nichols Arboretum ("the Arb") is a botanical preserve, with acres of rolling hills and every species of tree native to the state of Michigan. It's a popular walking and playing area in both summer and winter. The grounds are open every day from 8am until dusk. Matthei Botanical Gardens include marked hiking trails of various lengths, landscaped gardens, and an extensive multi-climate conservatory containing plants of botanical interest from all parts of the world. It's a wonderful getaway from the cold winter weather. The outside walkways are open every day from 8:00am to dusk.

Ann Arbor has over 150 parks, which offer everything from tennis courts, swimming pools, and ice rinks, to places to rollerblade or play disc golf. There are also three dog parks where canine pets can play off-leash.

If you want to get away from town, southeastern Michigan has a wealth of recreation areas within a half-hour car ride. You can hike, mountain-bike, kayak, or just enjoy nature at the many recreation areas in southeastern Michigan. The Huron-Clinton Metroparks provide additional recreational resources, including cross-country skiing and boating.

Sports and Fitness
The Ann Arbor Ice Cube is a unique combination of an ice sports center complete with pro shop, a physical therapy center, and a public fitness center.

Golfers will find over 20 golf courses in the Ann Arbor area. Check some of them out here.

The Ann Arbor YMCA offers many classes and workshops along with a weight room, sauna, gymnasium, Nautilus, swimming pool, and racquetball courts.

U-M Recreational Sports and Facilities
The University of Michigan has a variety of self-directed recreational activities, club sports and recreational facilities. Visit the Rec Sports webpages to get started. You can even rent kayaks, canoes, rock-climbing gear, cross-country skis and more at Rec Sports' Outdoor Adventures.

You can find more information on recreational activities by clicking here. If you're in the mood to check out attractions such as farm markets and museums near Ann Arbor, click this link.