Website Updates

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April 14th Update Video

In this update video we highlight some of the most popular posts over the week of 4.7.14 – 4.14.14 and unveil a new feature for all our members that allows them to create custom playlists of their favorite articles and videos. Website Update Links: Become a Member  | Thinkers vs Feelers  | Beach Volleyball History   |  Importance of Competition 

Team Drills

Back-court exchange drill

Back-court exchange drill

There are different variations in this 3 v. 3 back-court drill. One of the good ones restricts each 3-player team to just two contacts. As Oregon State associate head coach Mark Barnard explains, this drill requires the diggers to control the ball in a way that gives the hitter a chance to get a good


Andrea Becker

Allow your players to get to know you

Team chemistry doesn’t begin and end with players. The coach is a factor, too. Andrea Becker, a sports psychologist who assists the UCLA men’s volleyball team as well as the U.S. men’s national team, says it’s not only important for coaches to get to know their players – it’s also important for coaches to let



Nina Matthies: A brief history of collegiate sand volleyball

Nina Matthies, who coached the Pepperdine women’s indoor team for 31 years before switching over to becoming the Waves’ full-time sand coach this year, has been around for five decades of beach volleyball’s development. As a professional player, she won 44 beach titles during the 1970s, ’80s and ’90s before retiring in 1992 to concentrate

At home drills

Volleyball Hitting Drills

Practicing a 2-step approach can help your hitting

Sarita Mikals, who played for the 2013 Texas Advantage Volleyball Club 18s team that won Junior Nationals and will play for TCU in the fall, wasn’t always the jumper she is now. Earlier in her high school career, she had a bad habit of broad jumping after her hitting approach rather than jumping straight up.



5 Essential Nutrition Tips for Volleyball Players

A big part of getting players to perform their best is making sure they’re eating the right things at the right time. By Don Patterson Experts will tell you that eating and drinking is as much a part of playing good volleyball as fitness training and practicing skills. Not surprisingly, the Penn State women’s team,

Defense Drills

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2 vs. 1 side out drill

This is a great drill – fun and very competitive. And because it involves only three players, everybody gets lot of touches. It works this way: Two players receive serve on one side, one player serves on the other side. An ace earns the server a point. If the receiving team gets the ball back

Serving Drills

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Setter rover drill for passing, back-row attack and vision

Mother McAuley Coach Jen DeJarld runs this 2-on-1 drill to work on a variety of skills, including hitter’s vision. The drill starts with a player serving to two players on the other side of the net. The server then moves into a zone of her choice, and the hitter on the other side has to


Vertical Jump

Good form can improve your vertical jump

There’s a right and a wrong way to jump. Jeff Macy, director of sports performance at Oregon State University, says simple technical corrections that allow you to jump right can add an inch or more to a volleyball player’s jump. In this video, Macy offers advice to a young player on how she can use

Warm up Drills

Ball Control Drill

Ball on none: a drill to improve ball control

This is a fun drill, and it sometimes gets a little crazy, as you’ll see here in a demonstration by Silver State Volleyball Club in Carson City, Nev. Three players participate: a setter and two passer/hitters. The object is to keep the ball in play as long as possible, and all three players are continually



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Skill Training: One size does NOT fit all

When it comes to improving the skills of young volleyball players, Park University coach Mike Talamantes favors ongoing tweaks, not major overhauls. Talamantes, who coached ASICS Mavs (Kansas City, Kan.) to the 2013 national title in the 16s Open Division at USA Volleyball Junior National Championships, talks in this video about why he thinks players


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Volleyball players don’t have to be 6-foot-2 to earn playing time

The game gets a little bigger every year, which means that, yes, there are a lot of really tall outside hitters out there. But if you’re not so tall, don’t sweat it. As Joe Trinsey, technical coordinator for the U.S. women’s national team, explains here, there are two very good reasons why smaller players can


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Middle attacking approach

Pointing out that bad stuff often happens when the hitter has to attack a ball that’s too close to the net, Mike Schall explains the keys to a strong middle blocker approach. He emphasizes an explosive closing step and the importance of jumping vertically rather than horizontally. He also discusses where the setter should locate




How To Get To The Next Level

Terry Liskevych gives his thoughts on the mentality players need to have if they want to make it to the next level

Coaches Profile

Mother McAuley HS Volleyball

Chicago Style Volleyball with Mother McAuley HS

Jen DeJarld is now in her ninth season as head coach of the Mother McAuley girls’ volleyball team in Chicago. A visit to one of her practices tells you a lot about why her team is consistently at the top of the rankings. Drills are competitive, creative and game-like, and each training session progresses from

Setting Drills

Hitting Drills

Blocking Drills

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Should kids block before they can block?

There’s not necessarily a right or wrong answer to the question of whether kids who aren’t tall enough to get their hands over the net should remain in blocking position or drop off to play defense. But Adam Johnson, a former U.S. national team indoor player and a top-level beach pro who now runs the

Serve Receive

Volleyball Drills

Tier Drills with Terry Liskevych

Oregon State women’s coach Terry Liskevych talks in this video about a drill that helps teams learn to take care of business on their own side of the net. As he points out, it doesn’t matter whether the opponent is the best team in town or the worst – if your team doesn’t execute on


Serve Receive Drill

Serve Receive Drill

A drill that forces a team execute the serve receive and terminate six balls in a row.


Andrea Becker

Allow your players to get to know you

Team chemistry doesn’t begin and end with players. The coach is a factor, too. Andrea Becker, a sports psychologist who assists the UCLA men’s volleyball team as well as the U.S. men’s national team, says it’s not only important for coaches to get to know their players – it’s also important for coaches to let


What Makes a Good Coach

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What You Hear Is Probably More Important Than What You Say

After nearly 30 years coaching college volleyball, Stanford’s John Dunning has had a whole lot of player meetings. Nowadays, he handles them differently than he did earlier in his career. When players come to his office to talk or pull him aside after practice with an issue, listening is his top priority, not problem-solving. Sometimes,


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Inside Out Coaching and Seasons of Life

  Joe Ehrmann, the coach profiled in the national bestseller Season of Life, explains how coaches at every level, from Little League to high school to NCAA Division I and even the professional leagues, can use sports to transform lives. Coaches have a tremendous platform, says Joe Ehrmann, a former Syracuse University All-American and NFL