Hamilton has a tradition of continually expanding and improving its athletic facilities.
The Margaret Bundy Scott Field House, a 55,000-square-foot multipurpose athletic structure, houses three regulation-size basketball courts and can seat 2,000 spectators. Removable wood parquet flooring is installed for varsity basketball games. The facility also features a six-lane, 200-meter urethane running track and indoor courts for tennis and volleyball. The surface can also accommodate practices for outdoor varsity sports during inclement weather. The Little Squash Center, featuring 10 regulation-size squash courts, including two with exhibition gallery seating, was built along the north wall of the field house in 2006.
Connecting with the field house are several additional facilities, including the Alumni Gymnasium containing a basketball court; the Russell Sage Hockey Rink, the nation's oldest college indoor hockey facility renovated in 1993; and the William M. Bristol, Jr. Swimming Pool, completed in 1988. An eight-lane "stretch" pool with a movable bulkhead permitting division into a diving area and a swimming area, it frequently serves as the host site for regional competitions. Opened in 2006, the Charlean and Wayland Blood Fitness and Dance Center houses a dance studio, a multi-purpose exercise room, a climbing wall and a cardio fitness and weightlifting area. The fitness center connects to the rest of the athletic facilities via an underground tunnel.
Adjacent to the Athletic Center are the nine recently refurbished Gray Tennis Courts; the Royce Baseball Field, featuring new dugouts and improved bullpen areas; the recently renovated softball field; and Steuben Field, the 2,500-seat football stadium. Directly behind the stadium is the William D. Love Field, which also encompasses the newly resurfaced 400-meter Walter H. Pritchard Track. Love Field, resodded in 2000, hosts soccer action. The newest of the Hamilton playing fields is an all-weather artificial turf field built in 2000. Located adjacent to campus, it is the home of field hockey and men's and women's lacrosse.
The Tompkins Golf Course is a nine-hole, 2,761-yard, par 35 course immediately adjacent to campus. There is no admission charged to students, who also use the course during the winter months for cross country skiing.
A gift from the Class of 1996, the Mark Cox Memorial Challenge Course, located in the Kirkland Glen, contains more than a half dozen high ropes challenges. The course is open to all members of the Hamilton community and is administered by the College's full-time adventure program coordinator. A series of high ropes initiatives are also located in the field house.
The primary emphasis of the athletic program at Hamilton College is upon the educational value of athletics rather than upon athletics as public entertainment or as a source of financial income. The College, through its Physical Education Department, provides a five-fold program in athletics: recreational play, instruction in physical education, intramural competition, and club and intercollegiate programs. Hamilton thereby continues its long tradition of encouraging not only the acquisition of knowledge but also the enjoyment of physical activity and the attainment of skills that will provide lifelong satisfaction.
The intramural program offers opportunities for participation in a wide variety of sports conducted under the supervision of the Department of Physical Education and a departmental advisor. The program is especially designed to encourage participation by students who enjoy competition but whose skills or interests are not of intercollegiate caliber. Sports offered include soccer, football, volleyball, racquetball, golf, basketball, ice hockey, squash, kickball, beach volleyball, softball, tennis and indoor soccer.
The College is committed to a representative and competitive intercollegiate program. It is also committed to seeking fine student-athletes who value and respect the fundamental educational goals of the College.
The College sponsors men's varsity teams in baseball, basketball, crew, cross country, football, golf, ice hockey, lacrosse, soccer, squash, swimming, tennis and track (winter/spring); and women's varsity teams in basketball, crew, cross country, field hockey, ice hockey, lacrosse, soccer, softball, squash, swimming, tennis, track (winter/spring) and volleyball.
Hamilton is a member of the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) and the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). The other members of NESCAC are Amherst, Bates, Bowdoin, Colby, Connecticut College, Middlebury, Trinity, Tufts, Wesleyan and Williams.
The Physical Education Department supports the following club programs: the Bicycle Co-op, dance teams, equestrian, fencing, martial arts, nordic skiing, men's and women's rugby, sailing, ski racing, table tennis and ultimate frisbee.
The Wellness Program provides students and employees of the College a wide variety of activities geared toward healthy living. At the center of the program is a core of activity classes such as aerobics, core training, yoga, pilates, spinning, cardio kick-boxing, lap swimming, water exercise, fitness and weightlifting, as well as ballroom dance, toning and fly-fishing. Classroom presentations on topics such as smoking cessation, nutrition, stress management, spirituality, alcohol use and personal fitness are available through wellness seminars. The Wellness Program provides information and literature through the wellness bulletin board located in the Charlean and Wayland Blood Fitness and Dance Center and online. A personal trainer and massage therapist are available through the program.