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Culture



Make Boys Volleyball Appealing

In Nebraska, the sport of volleyball sells itself. After all, it's the home of Cornhusker volleyball, the 2015 Division I National Champions. However, in Lincoln volleyball is only viewed as a women's sport. VCNebraska is looking to change this perception.

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Keep Your Team Engaged to Avoid the Mid-Season Slump

As the midpoint of the season nears and the weather starts to warm, club directors and coaches can find themselves facing the challenge of keeping athletes engaged. From setting new goals to re-evaluating coaches and players -- or even taking a break from competition and practice -- clubs use a variety of strategies to assist athletes in maintaining or regaining their focus. These actions also help coaches better connect with their players, aid a team in staying committed to its goals and keep everyone from suffering a "slump" when it matters most -- at the height of the club season. Two JVA member clubs share a few ways they keep their athletes engaged until the end of season.

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7 Player-Run Drills to Make Practice More Efficient and Effective

There are many philosophies and opinions out there about what makes practices efficient and effective, but in this instance, let's focus on removing the coaches from running the drill. That might sound crazy to some because the person running the drill, in many ways, controls its efficiency and effectiveness; but by placing the responsibility of controlling the pace, energy level, and the amount of effort on your players, you are accomplishing many things. To better understand, here are examples of player run drills.

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Engaging Your Team Through Communication

How many countless times have you yelled, “TALK!!!!” at your players after an error? Maybe your players aren’t communicating because they don’t know WHAT to say! Have you spent time teaching your players HOW to communicate? Communication is a skill just as much as serving and passing. It’s something that must be taught and practiced every day. Communication needs to be broken down part to whole just like you would do with any other skill of the game. To create great communicators in your program you must make communication a standard in your program.

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Playing Time and Finding a Role for Each Player

As the club volleyball season moves into an ever increasingly competitive segment of the season, all involved (athletes, coaches, parents) get a sense of where the season could be headed. From the bleachers, some parents may be wondering why we aren’t winning the close ones, too many are acting as if the next point and ultimate outcome of the match are dependent on the volume of their cheers, and some are simply wanting the best experience possible for their child hoping they get an opportunity to contribute. Players are fighting for roles and hopefully, as one of our players told me recently, “I will play wherever the team needs me to play.” Coaches meanwhile are working to balance individual progress and opportunity with team success. My goal in writing this column is to establish that those two things are not mutually exclusive.

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From the JVA Office: Building Great Sports Parents

When I talk to Club Directors and ask them "What keeps you up a night?" The #1 response I hear most often is "Parents". I had the good fortune to meet and talk with an amazing woman, Ruth Nelson, this past December at the AVCA Convention. She has a program that may help you cope with the nightmares. It is her BYOP®, Bring Your Own Parent Program. Learn how this program can serve as a connector between your parents, players and coaches from an early age.

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Team Bonding and Cohesion Guides Teams to Success

Team bonding and cohesion can be one of the first challenges coaches tackle at the start of a new volleyball season. Often before the first practice, and throughout the season, athletes are brought together to build relationships that lead to better communication during matches and strengthen bonds that can hold teams together through the ups and downs of the club volleyball season.

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From the JVA Office: A Pro-Active Approach to Handling Over-Involved Parents

Tournament time has begun, which means club directors and coaches are beginning to identify the over-involved and over-bearing parents. It's easy to say that our focus needs to be on the kids and ignore the parents, but as we all know, the parents are as much our customers as the players are; in some cases, even more so. Here are some practices your club can apply to establish a healthy relationship between your club, coaches, and parents.

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From the JVA Office: How to Score Better Officiating

January is just around the corner. Your teams will be headed off to tournaments. Do you want better officiating at your matches? Here are some ways you can make a difference.

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Running a Youth Volleyball Program and How to Find your Dragon

Perhaps you have listened to volleyball coaches complain they wish their current players would read the opponent better, or mention disappointment in a player's current form while performing a specific skill. I've heard numerous times a "next level" coach having to "fix" athletes when they get them, lamenting lack of volleyball IQ, lack of transition, or poor form. To this I say:

We didn't ask them "What color is your dragon" soon enough.

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Branding and Building Culture Key for Club Volleyball Success

To excel in club volleyball, directors and coaches can't just think of X's and O's.

Organizations must have a strong brand and culture to attract athletes, and emphasizing these attributes can be important to giving clubs and the players the best possible opportunity to succeed. It's a game plan many Junior Volleyball Association club directors around the country have followed with great results.

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From the JVA Office: An Invitation to Be the Change

It is the month of August, and the life of a junior volleyball club director has geared up, or for some it never stopped. You are sitting in your office, looking at your to-do-list, and cannot believe club season preparation has already begun... but have you even given yourself a chance to reflect on last season?

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Olympic-Bound or Not, JVA Competition Develops High-Level Volleyball Players

The U.S. Women's National Volleyball team boasts five players with Junior Volleyball Association ties, but their presence provides only a snapshot of the junior club association's success in developing talent.

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Tips to Battling Early Specialization in Junior Volleyball

If I told you that winning was not our top priority, most of you would probably give me an odd look or call me crazy. How could we not want to win at all costs? What are people going to think about us? It is an obsession that is infecting youth sports, and seems to be the #1 priority in junior volleyball. We may think that this is strengthening our children and players, however, the overwhelming question is... at what cost?

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It's All About the Athletes

The culmination of recruiting during the club season reaches its pinnacle beginning June 19th, 2016 in Orlando, Florida. College coaches from around the country descend on the Orlando Convention Center and ESPN Wide World of Sports for the AAU Girls Junior National Volleyball Championships, an event that parallels no other.

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Finding, Hiring and Keeping Good Coaches

In the fall of 2015, I attended my region's mandatory club directors' meeting. I typically try to sit with different club directors each year in an effort to get to know more directors and get a sense of what's happening in other areas of my region. This year I made a change. I sat with two club directors I knew.

During a break, one director next to me asked, "How do I find good volleyball coaches? What criteria do I use when interviewing?"

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Expose Your Players to College Volleyball

I got my start coaching middle school, high school, and club. I still remember the excitement of helping to pick my 14-2 team my second year of coaching. And even when I began coaching the 16-under age group, the time between tryouts at the beginning of December to when we began practicing at the beginning of January seemed like a lifetime. I couldn't wait to get started!! However, I have a gentle request that will hopefully tie all of this together.

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The Cell Phone Policy: Where Do You Draw the Line?

Instead of running away from the reality of how today's society communicates, we want to be able to embrace the technology and give very specific guidelines as to how we want it used within our organization this season. Find out how Wisconsin Juniors stays transparent with electronic communication.

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5 Keys to a Positive Relationship Between Your Parents, Players and Coaches

Now more than ever, parents are very involved (some would say "over-involved") with their sons and daughters club careers that you must be ready for just about anything. But in order to maintain a positive club culture a positive relationship needs to exist between your coaches and your players and their parents. Here are steps you can take to build and maintain that healthy relationship this season.

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Fall in Love with Volleyball: How One Club is Growing the Game with Fun!

Memphis Metro Volleyball began their Youth Volleyball Academy one year ago with a mission to promote the sport of youth volleyball in a safe and fun environment. Many of their older players have younger siblings and they wanted to start learning to play as

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Parent Council: To Be or Not To Be

By Sharon L. Galonski, Club Director, Next Level Volleyball Club

At a pre-season regional meeting two years ago, a presentation was given on the implementation of a parent council by one of the Mid-Atlantic volleyball clubs. My initial reaction was, "No Way

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The Player Coach Teammate Relationship

Coaching. At times it can be like parenting, at other times it is like being best friends, but the key to a successful player and coach relationship is succeeding at the fine line between the two. A coach has to know when to a) push a player and b) when to

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Volleyball and Losing: It's Not So Bad Anymore

In my early years of playing and coaching, winning matches came easily. Back then I knew that if we worked hard, we were most likely going to win. During my college career we won at least 20 matches each season. In all my years as a Division I volleyball

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Investing in Your Facility AND Your Culture

We have come a long way . . . Premier Volleyball Academy opened its doors in 1996 as a four team program practicing out of a local high school with nothing more than a bunch of eager players and a few dedicated coaches. We now house about 35 club teams (350

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