This morning as I was getting situated to start my work day, I came across a video by a professional beach volleyball player called Riley McKibbin entitled “Rise of a Benchwarmer”.
The video starts out describing a scenario that played out while he and his brother, also a professional beach volleyball player, were coaching a young indoor volleyball team at the Junior Olympics Tournament in Florida.
Volleyball is all about positioning. The difference between getting the dig, making the pass, or stuffing the block is often a matter of inches. Fractions of inches even.
One of the most common mistakes we see in young players is they play themselves out of position. This usually happens for one of two reason. Either they are guessing where the ball is going to be, or they know where it’s going to be and they’re trying to time the ball.
What to do I mean by that? Simply put, they are trying to be where the ball is going to be at the exact moment the ball is going to be there. They are trying to meet the ball. We want them to beat the ball!
I’ve been a high school volleyball coach for about five years. The last three of those, I’ve been privileged and lucky enough to be the head coach. Before that, I played about 6-7 years of club and beach volleyball in New Zealand with, and against, some of the best in the nation. I wasn’t a star player, but I feel like I held my own and got the job done.