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Words of Advice from Volleyball Parents

By Staff, USA Volleyball, 12/31/99, 9:45PM CST

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Parents and coaches shared what they wish they had known about volleyball before getting started.

It’s all about the team.

Volleyball is one of the most team-oriented sports out there. One player can’t win the match on their own, so learning to put faith into your teammates and giving the best effort possible will ensure the most success.

Focus on the fundamentals.

Volleyball takes time to learn, so breaking down the fundamentals is key. Take the time to revisit the fundamentals and build a strong foundation. Even NCAA Division 1 athletes break down the fundamentals on their own and at practice.

Shake it off!

Mistakes happen all the time in volleyball. When they happen, shake it off and focus on improving for the next time. Learn from mistakes by asking your coach how to correct them and support your teammates by cheering for them when they make mistakes.

Communication is key.

Communication and enthusiasm go a long way
in volleyball. Speak loud and clear with your teammates and coaches to help your team succeed. Also, keep a high energy level and cheer on your teammates when you are on the court and on the bench.

Pick a program that suits your child.

Find a program that suits your child’s playing style and commitment level, along with your commitment level as a parent. Research the volleyball programs in your area and understand what is expected before signing up. For more information, see Ways to Play on page 8.

Get to know your child’s coach.

The ideal coach is accessible, honest and a good role model for your child. Understand his or her views on playing time, development and discipline, and let him or her know what your child needs to improve as a player. The key is open, honest communication.

Be your child’s biggest fan.

At practices and games, allow the coaches and referees to do their jobs and focus on being your child’s biggest fan. Shouting instructions from the sidelines can confuse and frustrate young players and their coaches. Instead, encourage your child to have fun and be a good teammate.

Social development is part of the game.

Volleyball teams are built on trust and communication. Your child will learn to interact with their teammates, coaches and referees and will build social skills that apply beyond the court. Sports are a great way for your child to meet new people and make friends.