When you think of summer the first thing to come to mind is sunshine, free time, and beaching. The next thing is probably sand volleyball. Whether you are an active athlete who loves the sport, or simply a recreational player, volleyball is one of the sports that anyone can pick up quickly.
Volleyball is not technically a summer sport. While it is slated for the summer Olympics and is commonly associated with summertime, the volleyball season occurs during the fall for most professional and academic teams. High school and college volleyball teams have their most competitive time at the beginning of the school year.
There is never a wrong time to start a friendly game of volleyball, so let’s talk about the best ways to play the sport as it is meant to be played, year round!
Fall is the most competitive season for most professional and academic volleyball players. Their season runs from autumn till early winter with games being played in a school gym. Some teams may start training in the summer, this mostly consists of weight lifting and such to be able to be competitive during the season.
The benefit of indoor volleyball is that it can be played all year round. The weather doesn’t have to be nice, and if there is rain or snow it doesn’t wreck the court or the players. Even in the summer, when it can become extremely hot outside, the indoor volleyball court often has a source of air conditioning to help cool off.
The biggest drawback of indoor volleyball is the hard flooring. Most professional athletes invest in knee pads to prevent the severe injuries that can come from falling hard to bump a ball up. For recreational players, there may be times when the ball simply hits the ground because you don’t want to risk injuring yourself on the hardwood floor.
Indoor volleyball also requires a bit of work to set up. Given that gyms are often shared between different sports (basketball is the main one that comes to mind), volleyball courts are nets that can be set up and taken down. You may also need to reserve gym space in advance to prevent others from incriminating on your game time.
Beach volleyball is the most common form of volleyball that comes to mind when thinking of the sport. Feeling the sand between your toes and kicking it up as you lunge to defend yourself from a spike brings happiness and joy to most people.
For beach volleyball players the season depends entirely on the location of the beach. For climates that have the typical four seasons, fall and winter are often too cold to be outside on the court. In this case, the court either moves indoors or games have to wait until the weather warms up.
However, for locations where it is sunny and warm all year round like California, the beach volleyball season may never end. Officially, the NCAA (college-level) beach volleyball championship happens at the end of May, right before school gets out and students get to take advantage of peak summertime.
Snow Volleyball (the newest addition)
Snow volleyball is the newest version of volleyball to join the crew. It was invented in 2008, probably by some people who live where snow is on the ground for 10 of the 12 months of the year. Similar to beach volleyball, snow volleyball is dependent on the weather and can only be played when there is snow on the ground.
While similar to the other versions of volleyball, snow volleyball still holds its own as a game. It can only be played in places that have perpetual snow and cold enough climates to maintain the snow on the court. It could be a great inter-season hobby for volleyball players in colder climates.
Volleyball is a summer sport in common thought, but the professional and athletic season is from the beginning of fall to early winter. Although for most players volleyball is played all year round! It is a great way to pass the time with friends during the summer on the beach or during the winter either indoors or on the snowy court.