How to Make the Volleyball Team With No Experience? Trying out for any sports team can be highly nerve-racking. You must push yourself to make the best play, minimize errors, and impress the head coach. And if you want to make the team, the pressure you’ll face is both mental and physical. Volleyball tryouts are not different from other sports tryouts in this way.
If you don’t have any experience playing volleyball, there’s no doubt that you are going to be even more nervous going for your first tryout. You may be right to be anxious since you don’t know what to expect. But you’ll be wrong not to try to find out. And that’s why you made the intelligent decision to read this piece.
There are some essential things you should know and do if you intend to be selected for the volleyball team at the try outs and begin a volleyball career. Coaches have specific things they are looking for in prospective players, and having these things can give you the edge you desire over other hopefuls at the tryouts.
So what do you need to know to make the volleyball team, especially if you have no experience? Here is some proven information that will help you if you apply yourself to them.
Preparing for the Tryouts
It is said, “Preparation is the secret of champions.” So what you don’t want to do is go for your volleyball team try outs being completely green. No!
You must get yourself in shape and ready for the tryouts. And preparing for success in anything takes time. So here’s what you need to know:
When to Start Preparing for Volleyball Tryouts
Time is a friend of athletes. The more time you have to prepare, the less confused and nervous you become. You need some confidence to take on the volleyball tryouts, especially as a first-timer, and confidence is built by practice.
Learning the skills and developing the right attitude to impress the coach calls for some good time investment. You need to research the game, learn the rules, get a ball, practice the moves, and get in shape.
If you’ve never played volleyball or been on any team, don’t make a sudden decision to try out for the volleyball team a few weeks before the day. Instead, plan. Give yourself a 2- to 3-month headstart.
A month to 6 weeks before the tryouts is not a bad time to start preparing to play volleyball if you’ve previously been involved in other sports teams.
Learn the Volleyball Skills
Learning fundamental volleyball skills is a no-brainer if you want to play on the volleyball team next season. Skill development is essential to what coaches are looking for in potential players. Of course, you’ll need a ball to develop skill, so get your ball or two.
There are 5 primary skills in the game of volleyball, and practicing them will prepare you for the tryouts:
Passing or bumping in volleyball may be the most important fundamental skill in the game. Therefore, coaches take note of the passing skill level of potential players.
Practice passing forms and skills by hitting your volleyball against a wall. This will prepare you for other skills like “setting.”
Every point made in volleyball starts with a serve, so serving is a vital skill to learn when you start playing volleyball. In addition, coaches look for consistency in players serving the ball. So practice the regular and overhead serve often ahead of the volleyball tryout.
The skill of digging is essential to passing hard-driven balls. As such, it can be used in setting and is vital to defending. Therefore, learning this skill can be a real boost for you in the tryouts.
If you want to be among the front-row volleyball players, hitting is an important skill to learn. However, this skill is essential for every volleyball player. Footwork is vital to hitting as it often involves a vertical jump.
If you want to succeed in the volleyball tryouts, don’t let anyone out-hustle you. Being nimble and agile is a prerequisite to being noticed and selected by the coach. Go for all the balls in the tryouts. Coaches will pick players who hustle more over those with a higher skill level.
Get in Shape
You cannot play volleyball with a team if you are not in shape. Playing volleyball demands high levels of fitness. Most coaches use fitness tests to weed out players from the tryouts, so you need to start getting in shape several weeks before.
To get in shape, join a gym or have a workout regimen you strictly follow. Running, biking, cardio, and strength training are essential to get you in shape. Also, doing some yoga will improve your balance and mobility. Exercising a few hours every day goes a long way.
Warm-ups like stretches and other exercises like push-ups are standard in tryouts.
Learn the Rules and Language of the Game
You must learn the rules if you want to know how to play volleyball as a member of the high school team or any other team. It would help if you also learned the language used in volleyball to understand what the coach calls out in the tryouts.
One way to do this is by going online and reading up on volleyball. But this may not be sufficient to help you remember everything. So in addition, watch lots of YouTube videos of volleyball tutorials and games.
To further increase your rate of learning and practice in playing volleyball, join any club team available. Joining a club volleyball team will grant you the necessary exposure and training needed in the tryouts.
The Secret Is to Practice
Practice is everything. It would be best if you played and learned volleyball constantly. Finding every avenue to play and train will boost your skill development and improve your fitness.
If there are multiple clubs in your area, go for their tryouts and training. You may have to pay a fee to join a club volleyball team, and there’s a big time commitment, but many clubs offer specific training you will not be able to get practicing alone.
Most club teams’ tryouts are not too challenging because club directors focus on teaching the game.
What a Volleyball Coach Is Looking For
Volleyball tryouts are all about impressing the coach enough to make the team. Every coach is different, so there are several things coaches look for in a potential team player that may differ from coach to coach. However, there are general attributes that every coach looks for in their players. Here are some very essential ones:
Every coach wants a player who can move. Agility, fitness, high vertical jump, balance, speed, and a quick reaction time are some things the coach will watch out for in the tryouts.
Overall, athleticism and hustle are a big plus for anyone who wants to make the team.
If you are trying out for the high school volleyball team, you must be aware that the high school season is very long. As such, any coach will pick a less talented player committed to playing the whole season over a less dedicated player. Likewise, no coach wants to deal with young volleyball players that quit midseason.
If you are a student, you must remember that you are first a student before you are an athlete. High school districts do not allow students with poor grades to compete in volleyball games. So, even though you don’t have the qualifying grades during the tryouts, if you get picked for the team, you’ll have to get your grades up to play.
Most coaches have specific grade requirements for students to qualify for tryouts. Not having these required grades would rule you out.
How knowledgeable you are about volleyball can influence whether you make the team. Likewise, making intelligent decisions can affect how a team performs, and knowing how to execute what the coach asks for is vital to success.
Also, get to know the team you want to join. Look at stats from previous seasons and find old players.
Attitude is everything. A positive attitude creates an excellent atmosphere for learning and even making mistakes. Therefore, any coach will value a player with a good attitude over a skillful player with a negative attitude.
Volleyball is a team sport, and players must maintain a positive attitude to play effectively, especially when losing. It is a good attitude that makes the team a team.
Coaches often make the team captain the player with the best attitude.
Every coach knows that every player that comes for the tryouts is not yet the best they can be. So coaches observe the players most responsive to their instructions and willing to learn and adapt quickly. In addition, a volleyball coach will look at the approach and form of a player to see what to improve and how easy it will be for the player to make changes.
Natural athleticism is also a big plus when a coach considers a player’s potential, but paying attention to what the coach asks is a great asset.
The coach will look at how well you have mastered the basic skills and how you deploy them on the volleyball court. So practice serving, serve receive, ball control, digging, passing, setting, hitting, and blocking before going for the tryouts.
But even if you haven’t mastered these skills, making the team is not impossible if you have most of the vital things listed above.
Things to Know Before Your First Volleyball Tryout
Since you are a first-timer, here are things you need to know and do before the volleyball tryouts:
What to Wear to the Tryouts
The keyword for tryout clothes is comfortable and athletic. So wear a well-fitting t-shirt that isn’t too big or too tight.
Wear spandex shorts for the tryouts as it is the traditional style. Do not wear leggings. Confirm with the coaching staff if the team has other requirements.
Knee pads are essential for your volleyball tryouts and will assuage any fear of hurting yourself when diving for the ball. In addition, they are not expensive, so invest in them and ensure you get knee pads before the tryouts.
Volleyball shoes are beneficial to improve your performance in the tryouts. They are not exceptionally expensive, but you can do without them if you have an acceptable alternative. However, volleyball shoes will boost jumping and traction.
Having the gear on will make you look like an experienced player and will impress the coach when he knows you are a newbie.
Above all, wear a smile to the tryouts. Smiling will stand you out from the crowd.
Show Up Early
One way to leave a good impression on the coach is to arrive early for the tryouts. Going early shows preparedness and enthusiasm, things coaches look for in players.
Being early will get you better settled before the tryouts start. Also, you could introduce yourself to the coach, telling them you’ve never played on a team before but that you’re looking forward to the opportunity and can’t wait to learn.
Good communication is one of the intangible qualities coaches look out for. You need to be bold, speak up, and speak loud. Get comfortable yelling.
Volleyball teams are not too hard to join at the high school level. However, suppose you want to better odds, try out for the first-year team. Tryouts are much more challenging for the varsity team. But if you do your best with all this advice, you can make the team you want.