August 26, 2016

New Student Recreation Guide

Get Started with Recreation – A quick guide for new MIT Students.

If you are a new student, chances are that you may not know what your campus recreation department has to offer – and we offer a lot! Whether you are completely new to fitness and wellness, or if you are a long-time lover of all things rec, we have something for you. Consider this a crash-course!

Get to Know Us

Introducing DAPER, another acronym for you to remember here at MIT. DAPER is the Department of Athletics, Physical Education, and Recreation and together, each component works to provide MIT students with activities that will enhance your quality of life. If you aspire to be a varsity athlete (or just want to watch some of our amazing NCAA D III action), get comfortable with Athletics. When you need to fulfill your PE requirements (you might want to do so sooner, rather than later), get comfortable with Physical Education. But, when you feel you need a break, or want to reach a personal fitness goal, get to know us, MIT Recreation:


MIT New Student - MIT Recreation


Find Your Fit

Variety is great, isn’t it? However, we know that it can also be overwhelming, especially for those who might not have a favorite sport or activity. Here’s a tip from us – just start with your end goal, and work backwards!

If your goal is to learn something new, try our Instructional Programs. If you want to be social and meet new people, take a Group Exercise class (or sign-up for Clubs and Intramural Sports). Need to relax? Massage is perfect for that. If you want to just have fun, lift weights, do some cardio, play a quick informal game, or go for a swim, then Open Recreation is more your speed.


MIT New Student - MIT Recreation


Get Started

If you decided to check out the fitness floors, packed with great workout equipment, be sure to check out our Fitness Orientation Quick Guide. It has everything you need to know to begin working out with us. If the pools are more your thing, check out our Aquatics Orientation Quick Guide, which will get you swimming happily in no time!

Now that you know just about everything, you’re ready to get access to our facilities. For new undergrad students, make sure you stop by our main desk with your MIT ID before your swim test. We will activate your ID, ask you to sign our waiver, and hand you a red towel card before wishing you good luck in the pool. For new grad students, you can come in at your convenience to go through the same process (no swim test required). If you’re interested in a Student Family Membership, make sure your spouse or partner has an MIT Spouse card.


MIT New Student - MIT Recreation


A Few Tips:

  • We have contests, free events, and special programs often so Follow us on Instagram or Like us on Facebook to keep updated.
  • Be sure to explore how you can earn PE points for specific recreation programs and classes.
  • If you’re looking for campus employment, working with us could be a great option.
  • Schedule a few minutes of recreation throughout your week, you deserve it.


Hopefully you are now confident and ready to take on recreation, as needed, throughout your time here at MIT. If you have have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask our staff or comment on a blog post. See you soon!