No matter if you are a mechanical engineer or a future doctor, everybody needs to let off some steam once in a while. Mens sana in corpore sano – a healthy mind resides in a healthy body. All the universities stay true to the old saying and each has an Institute of Physical Education and Sport.
Sports teach you character, they teach you to play by the rules, and they teach you to know what it feels like to win and to lose. In short sports teach you about life, which is the main reason it may be meaningful for you to participate in at least one sports class during the academic year.
The possibilities vary for each university but the range is quite broad. You may pick your favourite physical activity from the likes of football, basketball, martial arts, tennis or ice hockey (the Czech national sport) or be a bit more extravagant and go for archery, rowing on Dragon boats, Zumba or even Irish Dancing. Even if your study specialization (for example if you are a professional musician) requires higher level of caution and you need to be on a constant lookout for physical injury, it doesn’t mean you have to miss out. Take a Yoga class or discover other means of physical recreation that will help your body and mind to relax and unwind.
Apart from the sports that you may encounter as a normal part of your academic curriculum, the universities organize sport courses and camps during the summer and winter months in their respective facilities in Czech Republic or abroad. On top of that there are some special events that take place throughout the year, all non obligatory and held in the uplifting spirit of friendly competition. Here are some examples:
Czech Academic Games
The Czech Academic Games are probably the biggest, multi-discipline and multi-university sports competition held annually. Students can compete with each other in 27 different disciplines for the title of Academical Master.
University Eights: A rowing competition for Prague Universities
Both strength and endurance of current and former students is put to the test on the waters of the river Vltava, in a yearly competition between eight universities (seven Czech and one German), including Charles University, Czech Technical University in Prague and Czech University of Life Sciences, Prague.
The Motol Mile
A run through the premises of Motol hospital is organized by the Institute of Physical Education at Charles University’s Second Faculty of Medicine and is open for everyone to participate. Tradition dictates that you make the run in a doctor’s coat or surgeon’s scrubs but that’s entirely up to you.