Safe sports facilities near campus for active sports during the pandemic

Students can access Gettler Stadium to practice and exercise on the turf field, play mini-pick-up soccer games, throw a soccer ball, and more.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, it has become difficult to lead an active lifestyle and it is becoming increasingly difficult to find recreational sports opportunities on the University of Cincinnati campus.

Fall intramural sports have been canceled, basketball courts at the leisure center are closed, and reservations are required to reserve time at the center’s gym and lap pool.

Recreational sport promotes an active lifestyle. They lead to more physical activity, less stress, and an easy way to have fun with your friends. For this reason, despite all the challenges in these difficult times, it is important to look for opportunities to participate in recreational sports.

Although sports have been restricted on campus, some options remain available. The UC Trabert-Talbert Tennis Center between Gettler and Nippert Stadium is open. The facility has six courts that can be accessed by the public. However, two are currently under construction.

Students can also access Gettler Stadium to practice and exercise on the turf field, play mini pick-up soccer games, throw a soccer ball, and more.

With the cancellation of intramural fall sports, students must investigate off-campus options for competitive sports opportunities.

Cincinnati Sports Leagues (CSL) currently hosts fall coed leagues for flag football, softball, sand volleyball, and kickball. The Fall II season begins with registration for flag football, kickball and volleyball leagues, which open on October 1st. Flag football and kickball will be played in Oakley fields, while volleyball will be played in the sandbar.

CSL maintains security protocols such as disinfecting devices between games, requiring CSL staff to wear face covers and replace handshake lines with “socially distant air high fives” after the game.

CSL also states that “It is the responsibility of players to distance themselves socially before and after the game when they are feeling fit”.

Soccer City, an indoor facility, is currently hosting men’s, women’s, and women’s football leagues in its fall session. Their winter one-session leagues begin October 19th.

River’s Edge, another indoor sports facility, hosts soccer, flag soccer, and indoor softball leagues.

Soccer City and River’s Edge, like CSL, have taken security precautions for COVID-19. These include limited audience numbers, teams asked not to be more than 10 minutes early for their games, and increased hand sanitizing stations.

Aside from competitive leagues, there are many other ways to participate in a variety of recreational sports. These facilities require masks when surrounded by other people or indoors. Bringing your own sports equipment is recommended.

Golf enthusiasts can hit the lanes of many courses in the Cincinnati area, including Avon Fields Golf Course, which is just a short 10-minute drive from UC. Other public courses include California, Glenview, Neumann, Reeves, and Woodland.

Hoops fans can find places to shoot baskets at Oakley Recreation Complex, Evanston Basketball Court, and Fairview Basketball Court, all 15 minutes’ drive from campus.

Avondale Soccer Field and Fairview Soccer Field, both outdoor, are open and less than 10 minutes’ drive from UC.

Baseball and softball players can find bat cages at Backstop Sports in Eastgate at game speeds between 35 and 75 mph to suit players of all skill levels.

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