"One of my early (and best) coaches explained to me that a middle’s job on offense is to pull the opponent’s blockers away from your pin hitters, and this was achieved by calling for a set early and loudly."
I’ve been a middle blocker my entire volleyball career. I tried other positions – I definitely think it’s helpful to experience a different role – but I always went back to playing middle.
It wasn’t because that’s where I was placed when I first started playing at age 13. And it also wasn’t because I didn’t want to move out of my comfort zone and do something else. It was because I genuinely felt like I understood what it meant to be a middle blocker and how my role was designed to help my team.
When I say I understood it, I mean that very seriously because I think that true comprehension of what a middle blocker does is missing from a lot of players and coaches. Middle is not a popular position among young players. I think there are a couple of reasons for that: