EUGENE, Ore. - If you’re planning on mounting a broomstick any time soon, you should consider wearing tights.
“The bristles totally chafe your legs,” said Patrick Millegan, who is a member of the University of Oregon’s Muggle Quidditch League.
Millegan and about a dozen other University students take part in this Harry Potter-inspired sport every Saturday on Gerlinger lawn.
In the popular book series, players soar around on broomsticks and interact with enchanted balls. The muggle - or non-magical - version is a hybrid of rugby, soccer, basketball and dodge ball.
The League was started in 2006 but had to be re-energized in 2009 by Charmaine Ng, a University journalism student and Harry Potter enthusiast.
“The people are lot of fun,” she said of the League.
League member Ben Schapiro said he started playing Quidditch after trying rugby.
“I got more severely injured in rugby,” he said.
He admitted that Quidditch has its own challenges.
“You have to think about the game differently because you only have one arm” when mounted on a broomstick, he said.
Member Rose Ingram, who is studying abroad from Norwich, U.K., purchased a regulation Quidditch broom to play.
“England doesn’t actually have many teams,” she said. “I think there’s a total of three in the whole country. When I discovered that Oregon had a team, I was pretty happy.”