Develop your volleyball skills and improve your fitness by playing games with your friends.
Summer training shouldn't consist solely of traditional weight room workouts. Instead, gather a group of friends and play some games. Here is a game that not only provides a fun break from your regular routine, but can also help you achieve your volleyball performance goals.
Medicine Ball Volleyball
Aerobic/anaerobic conditioning, agility, manipulative skills, strength and speed
Medicine balls of different sizes and weights, an adjustable height volleyball net or 8-12 cones
Playing Area and Set-up:
Volleyball court or open area of approximately the same size, with the net lowered. Game can also be played in a gym or other large area with a row of cones set up to substitute for a net.
The game is played using volleyball rules. It can be played one-on-one, but it's better with teams of two to four athletes. The object is to throw the medicine ball back and forth over the net using a variety of overhead, underhand and side throws or tosses.
The receiver must catch the ball before it bounces twice and return it over the net. If the ball bounces twice before it's caught, the offense scores a point. If it doesn't bounce twice, play continues.
To ensure safety, players must allow the ball to bounce once before catching it.
Once the ball is caught, the athlete may take only one step before either returning the ball over the net or passing it to a teammate.
The game ends when one team scores a set number of points.
Play using a Swiss ball or other exercise ball to add a challenge due to its size and the speed at which it can be thrown.
More Performance-Improvement Games
Find more enjoyable games to supplement your traditional sports training at the following links. Most of them can be adapted to deliver a total volleyball training session.
Source: Dawes, Jay, and Chris Mooney. 101 games and Drills for Conditioning Athletes. Monterey, Calif.: Coaches Choice, 2006.
Mark Roozen, STACK's senior content editor, has been in the strength, conditioning and performance field for more than 28 years. He holds a Master degree in exercise physiology and several certifications as a strength and conditioning coach, including CSCS,*D, NSCA-CPT and FNSCA.
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