Ready for action

24 January 2019

Whether you’re wanting to compete or just looking for some exercise and fun, UCT has close to 40 different sports on offer to keep you active, fit and stress-free. There’s something for everyone.

Mental benefits

You already know the physical benefits of sport, but did you know that participation in sports can positively affect your mental health too? Here’s how exercise can improve your life as a student:

  • Mood. Sport improves your mood by triggering certain chemicals in your brain. So if, after a long, stressful week of work, you want a burst of happiness and relaxation, get physical. Team sports are also a good way to unwind and engage in satisfying challenges.
  • Sleep. Physical activity improves the quality of sleep by helping you fall asleep faster and deepening your sleep.
  • Concentration. Research shows that a mix of aerobic and muscle-strengthening activities is especially helpful in keeping your key mental skills sharp. These include critical thinking, learning and using good judgement.
  • Reduce stress and depression. Physical activities not only distract you from daily stresses, but also stimulate the production of endorphins and reduce the levels of stress.
  • Confidence. As your strength, skills and stamina improve by playing sport, your confidence and self-esteem increase accordingly.
  • Leadership. Studies of team sports, such as soccer, basketball, rugby and hockey, show a correlation between sports participation and leadership qualities. What better place to test, develop and hone your leadership skills than on the field or court? Whether you’re wanting to compete or just looking for some exercise and fun, UCT has close to 40 different sports on offer to keep you active, fit and stress-free. There’s something for everyone.

UCT sports headlines

  • UCT swimming captain and chairperson Matthew Bowers was selected to compete in the South African national team.
  • Physiotherapy student Nepo Serage made big waves in hockey circles when she became UCT’s first-team goalkeeper just eight months after joining the squad. And then she was selected to represent South Africa at the Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
  • UCT business science student Tristan Drummond represented South Africa at two international canoe polo tournaments in Belgium. The African Canoe Polo Championships took place in Cape Town in September 2018.
  • UCT won all three team events – men’s, ladies’ and mixed – at the challenging Race2Stanford Triathlon, which takes place between Hermanus New Harbour and Stanford Village Green. The teams chalked up their successes to effective collaboration between the cycling, swimming and athletics clubs.
  • The Private Client Holdings Racing Team – comprising nine current UCT students, one UCT alumnus, and two local riders – took third in the annual 202 km Coronation Double Century cycle race, stepping up to the podium in this race for the first time.
  • UCT’s new cricket coach, former Western Province and Lions player Eugene Moleon, is out to rejuvenate interest in the sport and the UCT Cricket Club, which won the 2017 Western Province Cricket Association’s Club of the Year title. He’ll be coaching the first XI for the 2018/2019 season.
  • The UCT Rowing Club celebrated when alumnus Will Cahill was selected for the Oxford Blues Boat, which competed in the 2018 Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race.


Join the club

While you might know what most of these sports involve, chances are that quite a few will be new to you. Find out more about these UCT sports clubs on Jammie plaza during O-Week and try something new. You can also sign up for sports clubs at the Student Sport and Recreation office in the Sports Centre on upper campus.

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