Winter sports in Portland are alive and well--you just have to look for them inside. With a field built on top of an old hockey rink, indoor soccer is rambunctious and fleet-footed. Unlike outdoor soccer, where the field stretches on and on, indoor soccer games are faster, high-scoring affairs where the ball is often kicked off the walls. Next season starts up October 24; sign up a team now, or join a team by visiting the Indoor Soccer Center and post your name on the bulletin board there. And spectators can watch the games for free! Indoor Soccer Center, 418 SE Main, 231-6368; for more info hit

More of a racquet person? Racquetball is on the rebound, and a lot like tennis--but without the annoying need for skill. There are a few rules, but you can easily make up your own. Give it a shot for some hot, sweaty fun! St. John's Indoor Tennis and Racquetball Center, 7519 N. Burlington, 823-3629.

Table Tennis is a rec room fave that is a surprisingly fun winter pastime. And now that it's an Olympic sport, people can't call you a puss! For expert instruction or just playing with friends drop by... Oregon Table Tennis Inc, Lot Whitcomb Elementary school gym, 7400 SE Thompson Rd in Milwaukie, Adult drop-in hours are Wed & Sat, 7-10 pm, and Sun 1:30-4:30 pm, $4.

Now, don't laugh, but badminton can be EXTREME. Especially when you play it with aggressive types who can send the shuttlecock smoking across the net at 200 mph. Get your badminton on this winter by hooking up with the PSU Badminton Club. Check for details and sign up sheet.

Okay, you're right... racquet sports are for pussies. That means it's finally time for you to learn how to play ice hockey. The Valley Ice Arena in Beaverton offers introductory group lessons for the low, low price of only $50! It includes four lessons, skate rental, and free public skate times. But chop chop! The next classes begin October 8, and advanced signup is advised!

Valley Ice Arena, 9250 SW Beaverton-Hillsdale Hwy, 297-2521.