Urban Rec - Canberra's Sport and Social Club
The Women's World Cup Effect: Boosting Interest in Soccer and Netball at Urban Rec Social Sports Club
Sep 4

The Women's World Cup Effect: Boosting Interest in Soccer and Netball at Urban Rec Social Sports Club

September 4, 2023 - 2 months ago

In recent weeks, Urban Rec Social Sports Club has witnessed a remarkable surge in enthusiasm for both soccer and netball. A significant part of this upswing in interest can be attributed to the captivating events that are the Women's FIFA World Cup and the Netball World Cup. We'll delve into how these global tournaments have played a pivotal role in increasing participation and passion for soccer and netball at Urban Rec.

1. Inspiring Female Athletes

The Women's FIFA World Cup and the Netball World Cup have spotlighted outstanding female athletes who excel in their respective sports. The talent and dedication displayed by these athletes on the world stage have captivated audiences, inspiring many more women to take up soccer and netball, socially. 

Urban Rec has seen a surge in female participants who, inspired by the performances of athletes like Mackenzie Arnold and Caitlin Bassett, want to explore their own potential in these sports. The tournaments have acted as powerful catalysts, showcasing that women can thrive in soccer and netball, instilling confidence and motivation in the female players at Urban Rec.

2. Increased Media Coverage

Both tournaments have experienced unprecedented media coverage, making them accessible to a global audience. Television broadcasts, online streaming platforms, and social media channels have brought the games closer to fans than ever before. This surge in visibility has not only increased the viewership but also ignited a passion for playing soccer and netball.

Urban Rec participants, like sports enthusiasts worldwide, have avidly followed these tournaments. The comprehensive media coverage keeps them engaged with the sports, motivating them to participate in Urban Rec's leagues and events, thus boosting interest and membership numbers.

3. Fostering a Sense of Community

The Women's FIFA World Cup and the Netball World Cup have become communal events, bringing fans together to celebrate the spirit of sport. Urban Rec recognizes the value of building a supportive and inclusive community, and these tournaments have played a significant role in enhancing the sense of camaraderie among its members.

For Matilda’s opening game against Ireland, Urban Rec hosted 8 of our members to the stadium in Homebush. Members from Newcastle, Wollongong, and Canberra were in attendance. This event is all about fostering and rewarding our loyal members who regularly contribute to the wider communities they play in. 

4. Advocating Gender Equality

The tournaments have not only showcased athletic prowess but also served as platforms for advocating gender equality and empowering women in sports. The discussions around equal pay, representation, and opportunities in soccer and netball have resonated deeply with Urban Rec members who are passionate about fostering inclusivity and fairness in sports.

These conversations have motivated individuals to become active supporters of gender equality initiatives in the world of sports, thereby enriching the ethos of Urban Rec as a club that promotes a level playing field for all.

The Women's FIFA World Cup and the Netball World Cup have played an instrumental role in elevating the popularity of soccer and netball at Urban Rec Social Sports Club. These global events have inspired female athletes, increased media coverage, fostered a sense of community, and advocated for gender equality in sports. As the enthusiasm continues to grow, Urban Rec stands as a prime example of how these tournaments have sparked a positive wave of engagement and passion for soccer and netball at the local level. As a result, more individuals are not only watching the games but actively participating in these sports, enriching the vibrant community at Urban Rec.

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Jul 18


July 18, 2023 - 4 months ago

Engaging in social team sports offers a wide range of benefits that can positively impact physical, mental, and social well-being. Here are some of the main benefits:

  1. Physical Health: Team sports provide an excellent way to stay physically active and improve overall fitness. Regular participation in sports helps enhance cardiovascular health, build muscle strength, improve coordination, and increase flexibility.

  2. Weight Management: Being actively involved in team sports can assist in maintaining a healthy body weight. The combination of physical activity and social engagement can be more motivating and enjoyable, leading to more consistent exercise habits.

  3. Mental Health: Social team sports can have a significant positive impact on mental well-being. Exercise releases endorphins, which are natural mood lifters, reducing stress, anxiety, and symptoms of depression.

  4. Social Interaction: Participating in team sports provides an opportunity to socialize and build meaningful connections with others. It helps develop teamwork, communication, and cooperation skills, fostering a sense of camaraderie and belonging.

  5. Stress Reduction: Engaging in sports with a team can be a great way to unwind and take a break from daily stressors. It serves as a healthy outlet for managing stress and pent-up emotions.

  6. Confidence and Self-Esteem: Achieving personal and team goals in sports can boost self-confidence and self-esteem. It provides a sense of accomplishment and empowers individuals to take on challenges in other aspects of life.

  7. Time Management and Discipline: Committing to regular team practices and games instills discipline and time management skills, as players need to balance their sports activities with other responsibilities.

  8. Problem-Solving Skills: Team sports often involve strategic planning and decision-making. Players learn to adapt to changing situations, analyze opponents' strategies, and find effective solutions on the fly.

  9. Cultural and Social Understanding: In diverse teams, players get exposed to different cultures, backgrounds, and perspectives, fostering empathy and understanding among individuals.

  10. Long-lasting Friendships: Team sports often create strong bonds among teammates, leading to lifelong friendships and a sense of belonging to a community.

  11. Healthy Competition: Healthy competition in team sports can be motivating and push individuals to improve their skills and performance, striving for personal and team excellence.

  12. Character Development: Team sports teach important values like discipline, perseverance, sportsmanship, and respect for others, helping individuals grow as well-rounded individuals.

Overall, social team sports provide a holistic approach to physical and mental well-being while promoting social integration and personal development. Whether it's in a competitive league or a casual recreational setting, participating in team sports can lead to a happier and healthier lifestyle.

Regenerate response

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June 22, 2023 - 5 months ago

This Naidoc week Urban Rec asked artist, Urban Rec Member and proud proud Ngunnawal, Bundjalung and Kamilaroi woman Shaenice Miles to create an artwork that represents our community. Shaenice wanted to create something to represent the amazing community Urban Rec creates. We are so excited and proud to have something that represents us so well.


This Naidoc week we will be selling a limited edition (80 only) Narragunnawali shirts with all proceeds going to National Aboriginal Sporting Chance Academy, who use sport and mentoring to engage young people, build self esteem and enable a strong sense of autonomy through personal development. You can find out more about the amazing work NASCA is doing or donate directly here.

Get the squad together and get a new kit or just get yourself some epic swag while helping an amazing organisation. Pre-order your shirt here. There’s only 80 and its first in, best dressed. Shirts are $35 with all proceeds going to NASCA.


Narragunnawali (English Translation Coming Together)
The Artwork I wanted to create was something to represent the amazing community Urban Rec creates and will create. Each component of the artwork – the middle bit is a meeting circle with each of the community members coming together to play sports. There are footprints representing the different journeys and diverse backgrounds we all come from. The different meeting circles at the bottom is all cultures coming together to represent Reconciliation. The dots is to represent all the sports and sporting levels each individual brings. The blue, orange and yellow bit represents everyone coming together during different seasons and times throughout the year.


My name is Shaenice Miles, and I am a proud Ngunnawal, Bundjalung and Kamilaroi woman. I have grown up in Canberra and have been amongst the Urban Rec community playing social basketball. The one thing I love about Urban Rec is the social community, and friends you get to connect with.


This Naidoc week Urban Rec is coming together with our community doing the following to celebrate the first nations people of this wonderful country we call home.

  • We’ve partnered with artist proud Ngunnawal, Bundjalung and Kamilaroi woman Shaenice Miles to create Narragunnawali a design that represents our community.
  • We’ve created a limited edition shirt using the design which we are selling with all proceeds going to the National Aboriginal Sporting Chance Academy.
  • We’ve changed all of our sports locations to include the (land) that they are located on.
  • We’re adding an acknowledgement to country into our League Managers first day on ground team welcomes with the help of indigenous leaders.

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Jun 21


June 21, 2023 - 5 months ago

Hey legends! We’re always saying Urban Rec is more than sports but do you know why? There’s a reason why you’re reading our blog so we think you already know the answer to that question. We’d love to let you know how freaking amazing sport is for your social skills. Here's the lowdown on how getting in the game can level up your social game:

  1. Teamwork makes the dream work: Playing sports with a team teaches you how to work together towards a common goal. You gotta communicate, coordinate, and trust your teammates. This helps you develop awesome teamwork skills that transfer to real-life situations like group projects or even just hanging out with your crew.

  2. Making friends: Sports are a bloody awesome way to meet new people and make friends. Whether you're joining a team or just playing casually, you're bound to meet fellow sports enthusiasts who share your passion. You share the highs, the lows, and the bloody awesome moments, which creates a bond that's stronger than a crocodile's grip.

  3. Winning and losing gracefully: Sports teach you how to handle victories and defeats. You gotta learn to celebrate the wins without being a sore winner and accept losses without throwing a major tantrum. This helps you develop sportsmanship and resilience, which are key qualities for handling setbacks in life with a positive attitude.

  4. Communication on fleek: When you're in the game, communication is key, ya hear us? You’ve got to shout out plays, call for passes, and support your teammates. Effective communication on the field translates to real-life situations, where you gotta express yourself clearly, listen actively, and understand others. It's like leveling up your social interaction skills! A win-win!

  5. Respect all around: Sports teach you to respect your opponents, teammates, and officials. You learn to play fair, follow the rules, and treat everyone with respect, regardless of their skills or background. This respect carries over into your everyday life, making you a bloody legend to be around.

So, there you have it, mate! Sports give you the chance to develop killer social skills and that’s one of the things we love about Urban Rec. It’s more than sport. You practice teamwork, making friends, handling wins and losses, communication, and respect. Get out there, play hard, and watch your social game level up to epic awesomeness!

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Jun 21


June 21, 2023 - 5 months ago

Did you know that you burn an estimate of 449 calories in a 45 minute netball game? That is equivalent to 4 Gin and Tonics or 2 chocolate bars!

Netball is an epic sport that can help with a common new year's resolution almost all of us have. Do you have any guesses as to what we’re referring to? It’s weightloss! Netball is fast-paced as the nature of the game involves constant running, jumping, and changes in direction. You’re going to start working up a sweat within 5 minutes of playing and while you’re catching your breath, don’t give up just yet. Be sure to remember that playing netball helps to increase cardiovascular fitness, burn fat, and improve muscle tone. 

We mentioned that running and jumping are a part of netball but how does someone actually lose weight while playing netball? The thing is, you need to move quickly and efficiently using a combination of strength, agility, and coordination to outmaneuver opponents and score points. The intensity of the game means that players can burn a significant number of calories in a relatively short amount of time, making netball a great option for those looking to lose weight. Playing for a short time and burning a lot of calories sounds like a dream come true really! 

While netball is super great for weight loss, it is also a social sport that can help to improve mental wellbeing. Joining a netball team can provide a sense of camaraderie and belonging, as well as the opportunity to meet new people and make friends. This social aspect can be particularly beneficial for those who may be struggling with weight loss and looking for support and encouragement from others. Playing netball can also help to reduce stress and anxiety, which can be a common trigger for overeating or unhealthy food choices.

Here at Urban Rec, we love to support our community in achieving their goals. Whether it’s about trying to lose weight, learning a new sport, making new friends or all three and much more! Netball is a sport that can be enjoyed by people of all ages and fitness levels which is what Urban rec is all about! Urban Rec provides a sustainable and enjoyable way to incorporate regular exercise into your lifestyle, leading to long-term weight loss and improved overall health.

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Jun 21


June 21, 2023 - 5 months ago

What’s up players?!! Did you know that social basketball is played in almost all of Urban Rec’s locations around Australia? If you're keen on having a ripper time on the court and shooting hoops with your mates, then social basketball is where it's at! Whether you're a seasoned baller or just starting out, we've got a few tips to help you make the most of your game and avoid any rookie mistakes. Grab your sneakers and let's get into it!

First things first, it's all about teamwork. Our basketball leagues are more about having fun rather than winning championships (okay okay we know winning is awesome but having fun is actually better!). Make sure you communicate with your team and play off each other's strengths. 

Now, let's talk about defense! Playing solid D can make a huge difference in the game. Get in your opponent's face, use your wingspan, and don't be afraid to get a bit physical. Just don't go overboard and commit any fouls that'll earn you a trip to the bench! Keep it friendly and have a laugh along the way.

When it comes to shooting, practice makes perfect!. Hit up the local court or your backyard and work on your jump shot. Get your aim right, focus on your form, and don't forget to follow through with that flick of the wrist! If you miss a shot, no worries, mate. Keep your chin up and hustle for the rebound. There's always another opportunity to sink that three-pointer!

Another thing to keep in mind is fitness. Basketball can be a real cardio workout, so make sure you're in decent nick so you don’t let your teammates down. Run some laps, do some sprints, and get those lungs pumping. Don't forget to stretch before and after the game to avoid any injuries. The last thing you want to do is pull out of your game! That ain’t fun.

Lastly, don't be a ball hog. Sharing is caring, and in social basketball, everyone deserves a fair go. Pass the ball, involve your teammates, and make sure everyone gets their fair share of play time. Remember, the more everyone gets involved, the more fun it'll be for everyone!

So there you have it, there’s a few handy tips to keep in mind for your social basketball sessions. Play hard, have a laugh, and enjoy the banter with your mates. Just remember, it's not all about the scoreboard, but about the good times you'll have both on and off the court. Now go out there, give it a red-hot crack, and may the basketball gods be on your side!

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Hiring: National Marketing Coordinator
Mar 16

Hiring: National Marketing Coordinator

March 16, 2023 - 8 months ago

Urban Rec Sports Club is a premier adult recreational sports organization that operates in major cities across Australia. We offer a variety of sports leagues and events for all adults and skill levels to participate in, including dodgeball, netball, flag football, football, volleyball, soccer, and more.

Our culture is very fun-loving, disruptive, colloquial and social. We pride ourselves on being flexible, and very high performing. We are super professional, but don’t take ourselves too seriously. We are looking for a National Social Media & Marketing Co-ordinator to support our Managing Director.

The role is 2 days a week (15 hours per week) with flexible hours so would suit someone studying or returning to the workforce. For the right candidate, this contract will expand quickly.

  • Create and schedule monthly marketing content for social media channels.
  • Create content for seasonal advertising activities.
  • Create a monthly newsletter template.
  • Write content/articles for our website and Linked in Etc.
  • Use Canva to create and oversee Brand Templates and Company content pools
  • Review and approve content posted through our social media management platform - be the brand guardian.
  • Reply to comments and questions, be proactive at monitoring conversations.
  • Manage our Facebook Groups and communities to build brand loyalty.
  • Find and pitch sponsors for our charity events.
  • Create/update and send sponsor packages for national initiatives.
  • Proactively seek and pitch PR opportunities.
  • Organizing nationwide monthly events, collating presentations, setting agendas.
  • Auditing and updating website content for national promotions and SEO requirements (attend monthly meetings).
  • Manage and oversee paid advertising to find optimisation opportunities.
  • Support MD on additional administration tasks as needed.
  • You are creative.
  • You understand the internet and social media.
  • Proficient or willingness to learn and upskill on platforms like Canva, Meta ads, Buffer, Monday.com etc.
  • Good eye for detail and design as well as branding consistency
  • Excellent copywriting skills for article writing, web administration, and caption writing.
  • An interest in social media trends and hot topics (around sports, even better)
  • A natural eye for video editing.
  • No formal marketing experience required, though you need to have the flair and an eye of what our customers want.
  • Living in Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne and available to attend leagues from time to time.

We are looking for someone to join our team long-term, but this contract is 3 months to start to ensure we gel and improve. We do not want an agency for this role, it is in-house only!


Send your resume and a cover letter/email to [email protected]

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Gender Identity Inclusion, Rule Updates, Pride Round 2023
Feb 17

Gender Identity Inclusion, Rule Updates, Pride Round 2023

February 17, 2023 - 9 months ago

Urban Rec is proud to announce that we have recently updated our gender identity options across member profiles, the registration process, and rules within our club. 

While Urban Rec has always been LGBTQI+ friendly, the functionality of being able to offer places on team rosters for those that don’t identify as man or woman, has not been possible…Till now. 

We believe that all Australian’s should have access to social sports. We welcome all people, of any gender identity to join Urban Rec and benefit from the physical and mental health benefits that come with playing social sport. Urban Rec aims to provide a supportive and inclusive space for everyone, now and always. 


  1. Players can select a gender identity other than man or woman when creating their member profile.
  2. Individual teams will have space available on team rosters for people who are non-binary, transitioning etc. 
  3. Our sports rules have been updated to remove references to gender advantages or disadvantages in the context of scoring, defending, or positioning.
  4. Urban Rec has become a member of Pride in Sport, a national not-for-profit sporting inclusion program specifically designed to assist sporting organisations at all levels. 


Urban Rec has long been at the forefront of efforts to drive gender equity in the social sports environment. While many of our counterparts in the adult recreation space claim to be facilitating mixed-gender environments, there are very few other adult recreation providers that are facilitating exclusively mixed-gender leagues with the minimum inclusion requirements that we have long held to be fundamental to our programs.

All sports need to have a minimum gender identity requirement. Without gender identity requirements within a mixed sports environment we would unfortunately take away the equity of women, men and non-binary individuals having access to play in a mixed-gender, social, fun and fair environment. Simply stated, we would become a male dominated sports club. 


  • Our sports rules have been updated to remove references to gender advantages or disadvantages in the context of scoring, defending, or positions. 
  • Where appropriate physical advantages and disadvantages have been taken into consideration.
  • These include Touch Football, Basketball, Softball, Flag Gridiron and Netball.
  • These rules are now live within your member dashboard and on our website.


  • Pride Round is happening nationally within all Urban Rec cities, Feb 20 till 24, 2023.
  • To acknoledge all of our LGBTQI+ community as well as the additional announcements and updates.
  • We welcome players to wear some rainbow to show their support.
  • In Sydney, Our Party Cart will be attending a league each night with support from our sponsor, Young Henrys.
  • Donate what you can for a sausage and a beer towards Access Social Sports, and PrideCup.
  • What is Access Social Sports? Check out our instagram post here.


Get to know your updated rules, continue to play with kindness and fairness. If you have a question about someone's gender identity before, during or after a game, talk to your Event Host. Urban Rec has zero tolerance for homophopia, biphobia and transphobia. 

These updates are new for our club and an ever-progressive process for us all. We will not get this right the first time, and we do not pretend to have it all figured out, but we promise we are trying our best. Through our membership with Pride in Sport and the input from our LGBTQI+ community, we will continue to update and evolve as necessary. Our commitment is enduring. 

If you have any questions or suggestions about the policy or updates, please contact [email protected] 

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Netball experience life changing for Emma Bastable
Feb 15

Netball experience life changing for Emma Bastable

February 15, 2023 - 9 months ago

Emma Bastable (far right) pictured with her teammates. 

By Renae Smyth

Transgender netballer Emma Bastable first started playing in the Urban Rec Netball league in Sydney’s inner suburb of Redfern in 2018. 

A mixed social competition that Emma signed up for as an individual on a whim. A daunting step to take, given she didn’t know her teammates or the rules of the game.

Although, having played cricket, rugby and soccer growing up, Emma knew the rules and friendships would come later. So, for now, she focused on the fun and the opportunity to switch off from her days, working as a solicitor.

Taking more than eight years away from playing any sport, Emma admits there was always a concern in the back of her mind. An uneasy feeling that she may not be accepted by her team or the club.

“I was worried about the transgender stuff at first, I think that was one of the reasons why I hadn’t played sport for so long,” she said.

To her surprise, her gender was never a problem.

“It was totally not a big deal. Everyone accepted me and validated me in my gender. It was just never an issue,” she said.

Emma felt the support of fellow teammates and instantly felt welcome. Pulling on the GK bib for ‘The Flinstones’ felt right.

“I got really lucky in a way. I met a group of people that I really liked,” she said.

“The team was super supportive. I told them that I had never played netball before, so they were giving me tips and helping me along the way.”

Emma now plays multiple nights a week in five different teams and can’t imagine life without the game.  

“Netball has become such a huge part of my life and a big part of my identity.

“Having positive experiences over and over again has just made it easy to slowly start to play in more leagues and progress my abilities.

“I don’t know what I would be doing with a lot of my time if I hadn’t had such a good experience [with netball].”

The community netballer has thrown her support behind Netball Australia’s recent announcement of policy guidelines for inclusion of transgender and gender diverse athletes in the elite competitions.

“Diverse representation at higher levels is just so important for making everyone feel welcome in the leagues and in the teams.

“Kids look up to high-profile players and if they decide to pursue netball more seriously as a career, it is comforting to know that it’s an option for them. An option for everyone.”

To Emma, knowing the netball community has provided pathways and opportunities for others like her within the sport brings a level of acceptance, but hopes to see more engagement at the grassroots level.

“It’s really important for transgender people to be accepted and given the opportunity and to know that someone out there has there back.

“It takes a lot to take that first step of signing up for a community sport and if you have a bad experience, it could be enough to disincentivise you to stop playing sport all together.

“Encouraging  transgender people to participate in community sport goes a long way to changing attitudes and normalising acceptance of us and showing that we’re just out there doing our own thing and living a normal life.”

Emma will be a voice within the transgender and gender diverse community that will work with Netball Australia and netball member organisations as they develop policy guidelines for inclusion of transgender and gender diverse netballers at a community level.

Taking that brave step onto the court is an experience that Emma believes has changed her life and the person she has become, very much for the better.

“I’ve made so many friends through netball, friends that I never would have met before if I wasn’t playing netball,” she said.

“It allows me to be a better person and live a better life than I otherwise would be.”

For the original post from Netball Australia: https://netball.com.au/news/netball-experience-life-changing-emma-bastable 

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2022 Beach Sports Party Wrap Up
Nov 15

2022 Beach Sports Party Wrap Up

November 15, 2022 - one year ago

Urban Rec Canberra’s Annual Beach Sports Party.

It was a Friday Night in the early weeks of November. Last years’ event was cancelled with La Nina working overtime, but thankfully this year she had taken the night off and we had nothing but blue skies and beautiful sunsets, the main ingredients for an epic Urban Rec event.

As the teams started to roll in, the smell of freshly mowed grass, sausages sizzling and beer cans frothing to be opened, hit everyone hard. We knew it was going to be a good night.

Your host for the evening, lets call her Ba-na-na, welcomed everyone in at the beginning of the night. This one was special, this one was to raise funds for Access Social Sport Association, raising money to put straight back into the community, the ones who really need it.

Beach Volleyball, Beach Soccer, Beach Dodgeball & Beach Fijian Touch, the sports that filled the night with laughter.

Untouched by The Veronicas, The Nutbush & The Macarena, the sounds that made teams, from all different leagues, dance together.

Sausage Sangas (Vegetarian too of course), Beer, Cider & some of the most top shelf Pepsi Max, the essentials of an Urban Rec Event and with it all being donation based, a successful night for Access Social Sport Association.

The Beach Sports Party, our annual event to celebrate an amazing year of Social Sport, but also a chance for teams who wouldn’t normally see each other, to mingle and become friends.

‘We are signing up a team to Sunday Multisport because I want to play with Sports for Dummies now’ – The Bread Getters, Nov 11th, 9:18pm.

The night slowly came to a close with a public, and very intense, game of Rock Paper Scissors to secure finals spots, a nail biting Semi Final & Grand Final and a hilarious, but fully athletic, Staff vs Winners Beach Volleyball game.

The chants of ‘ba-na-na’, the look of pure enjoyment, the dope AF playlists, the vegetarian sausages (we still can’t tell when they are cooked or not), the vibe of 12 of Urban Rec’s funnest teams, and an all- star staff line up, saw us raise a total of $700 to put back into the community.

Don’t want to brag, but Urban Rec sure know how to throw a party 😎

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