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Volleyball is becoming an increasingly popular sport and is considered to be the second most popular sport world-wide. The popularity of volleyball means there are a lot of people playing volleyball, some estimates are as high as 500 million people. Having this many volleyball players means there is a need for volleyball coaches who are able to be effective developing players and running practices and drills that build player’s confidence and skills.
Volleyball Coaching Philosophy
In order to be an effective coach a coaching philosophy must be developed, all coaches must do this not just volleyball coaches. A coaches’ philosophy is crucial to the development of players and should be communicated with parents and assistant coaches. A coaching philosophy answers the question why you are doing what you are doing. Why do you want to coach volleyball? Why are you running certain drills? Why do you make the decisions you do during a game and practice? Volleyball can be a demanding sport and a coach that has developed a clear philosophy and has clearly communicated that to all of their players and parents is able to be much more effective.
A volleyball coach should ask themselves three questions when developing their coaching philosophy
1.Why am I coaching volleyball?
Take some time to really reflect on what is is about volleyball you enjoy and what parts of the game you want to share with your team. What experiences and lessons do you want to impart on your players through the game of volleyball?
2. What do I hope to achieve this season?
Both on the court and also off the court. The answer to this question is both about the volleyball coach themselves and their team, maybe a coach wants to increase their own knowledge and coaching ability and also teach their team good sportsmanship or perseverance. Setting a clear goal for your team and players allows practices, drills, and games to be played with a purpose.
3. How do I want to be remembered by my players?
This question will demonstrate what kind of coaching style suits a coach. Once the season is long over and the last volleyball has been served and the last volleyball drill has been run players will look back and remember their coach. What is it that a volleyball coach wants their players to say about them, the answer to that will guide the coaches’ approach and interactions with their team.
After a coaching philosophy has been developed it needs to be shared. Successful volleyball coaches are able to lay out the direction for their team and communicate very well how they will work with them to head in that direction. A successful volleyball coach continuously communicates their philosophy both explicitly and implicitly through consistent actions and interactions with players and parents.
Volleyball Drills and Practices
Successful volleyball coaches also know how to run an effective practice or training session. Many of the famous volleyball coaches today are able to push their team when they run drills and workouts so that they continuously improve. However, many of these volleyball coaches are not praised for their ability to run effective drills because that is what happens when most people are not watching. Volleyball practices are where coaches shine and volleyball games are where players shine. Coaches manage a game, but all of the work to get a team ready to perform in that game happens in practice. A volleyball coach must be able to run a practice that allows their team to maximize their time developing skills and select volleyball drills that will address their weaknesses.
The ability to design and implement volleyball drills that fall in line with a coaches philosophy and improves their team is crucial to accomplishing a team’s goals. Ultimately a well designed volleyball drill and well run practice changes a behavior or eliminates poor habits. First begin by evaluating players ability and identifying areas that are preventing the team from progressing. Once these have been identified half the battle is over and the volleyball drills found here can help or be modified to address the needs of any team.
Effective volleyball drills are efficient and allow players to get as many touches on the volleyball as possible. Drills that require players to stand in long lines should be avoided and practices should not allot large amounts of time to scrimmaging. An entire practice should have a purpose and should be built with drills that will work towards achieving that purpose, for example if a team has been struggling with passing during games a practice should be built with drills that will address that need. Allow the games to inform what needs to be worked on the next week or few weeks in practice and use drills that will engage players in a fun way to make improvements. The results of the practices and drills will be displayed in future games.
Progress can be slow and a coach must remain patient and keep up their enthusiasm. Continue to work with players and use or design drills that make progress towards a team’s goals. A coach is well on the way to success if they consistently support their team and communicate what they are trying to accomplish.