Intramural Sports Welcomes Ice Pickleball


Brianna Williams, Staff Writer

DURHAM- With the spring semester underway, intramural sports have started up again and have added a new sport to the mix–ice pickleball. 

Ice pickleball is a combination of volleyball and tennis played on ice skates. The game can be played in either singles or doubles, with a requirement that all players know how to skate. Players spend the 20 minute game passing a ball to each other with rackets. Teams can only achieve points when they serve the ball, and the score increases by one every time a team earns a point.

The idea to bring ice pickleball came from a viral social media post.

“I actually saw a TikTok for ice tennis… I wanted to see if we could pull it off. Then I started googling simpler versions of ice tennis,” said Intramural Sports Coordinator, Gabby Riviere. “Then I saw a lot of videos and news reports of ice pickleball in Canada. So there are a lot of people who play it recreationally.”

Although the sport is new to the program, the positivity it’s created is noticeable.  

“I love it. I think the atmosphere is absolutely awesome. People are coming out here willing to give something a new try,” said Ryan McGibbon, intramural official. “Especially something that is not a common thing. I think it’s just really good for people to come out here and enjoy themselves, and I think it is going to go well.”

Intramural staff is hoping that the new addition draws more people to intramurals, whether it is for pickleball or any of their other sports. 

“I would love for us to increase how many teams we have. Pre-covid, we were having 100 plus teams in each of the leagues. I think we are getting to a place now where we have staffing and facilities to support that again,” said Riviere. 

The goal is to create a strong community, where students can enjoy sports they’ve played before, or try new ones. 

“I think it’s a really fun way to try something new or reconnect with a sport you used to play previously…I think intramurals bring the community together. It’s competitive, it’s fun, it’s a little rowdy sometimes. I think it gives students a place to release energy,” said Riviere. 

For some of the staff, community is the reason they decided to join in the first place.

“I help out because I’m passionate about the community and the great people that work intramurals here,” said Jimmy Kosiarski, intramural official. 

With the first few weeks completed, players are enjoying themselves and are looking forward to more people joining. 

“It’s a fun way to meet new people and get outside to try new things,” said first-year student Avalaine Dries. 

Students can join intramurals at any point of the school year. The website has sign ups for all the different sports from co-ed soccer, basketball, volleyball and many more. Games are held in the Hamel Recreation Center, the Whittemore Center, Bremner Field and other places around campus. Students are welcomed to sign up with a whole team or alone as a free agent where they will be placed on any team.