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How to Jump Higher for Volleyball: Ten Commandments for the Vertical Jump

An explosive, impressive vertical is one of the most coveted – if not the most coveted – physical skills in all of sport. It’s the reason we marvel at NBA players such as Blake Griffin, and ‘ohh’ and ‘ahh’ at the absurd bounces of volleyball players like Troy Field.

It’s why there’s an entire dunk contest that gets viewed by millions every year, and why we prize a thunderous swing in volleyball or dunk in basketball far more than a simple layup or line shot – despite them being worth the exact same amount of points.

There’s just something about jumping high that we love. And for good reason. In volleyball, jumping higher will allow you to tap into an entirely new dimension of your game. It’ll give you offensive angles you’ve never had before, allowing you to side out at a higher rate. It’ll make you a bigger presence at the net, making it more difficult for an opponent to hit a high line over you or...

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The COOLEST Volleyball Serve EVER! (How to Serve a Skyball)

The world’s reaction to the skyball serve when it got its first true glimpse of it, at the Rio Olympic Games in 2016, was as you might expect: A blend of amusement, confusion, misunderstanding, and viral videos.

The casual viewer of beach volleyball didn’t understand why a serve hit straight into the air – by Adrian Carambula, in this case – was proving so difficult to pass. On the ESPN Show, Pardon the Interruption, Tony Kornheiser called it a middle school serve. It was a joke, a gimmick, a cute thing this diminutive Italian player did.

It is, in actuality, when done correctly, one of the deadliest serves in beach volleyball.

But why is the skyball serve so effective? And, more important, how do we even hit a skyball? 

If you’re reading this article on the skyball serve, you’ve likely tried it, or have had a friend who’s tried it. Chances are, you’ve hit it backwards, sideways, a full football field long. Maybe you've even...

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How to Build a Cheap Home Gym for Under $100

 

We also run beach volleyball classes, private lessons and training camps for adults and juniors in Hermosa Beach, CA and Salt Lake City, Utah. We run volleyball vacations in exotic locations around the world. We can even run beach volleyball clinics for your group, club or team in your hometown! Send an email to [email protected]

Throughout time, there have been hierarchies of all types and shapes and sizes. The order of most can be boiled down essentially to a single element: Resources. Whoever has the resources, be it in quantity or quality, is the one at the top of the food chain. And with gym closures and beach closures and, well, everything closures, the volleyball players at the top of the totem pole today? 

They're the ones with the home gyms. 

Home gyms can vary, of course. Some have dumbbells and bands set up in their living room, getting a good pump in while watching Netflix. Some have tricked out garages. And, of course,...

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High-Level Arm Swing Mechanics for Spiking a Volleyball (GAIN MORE POWER!)

Think of all of the biggest hitters in beach volleyball you know. Take a minute. No hurry here. Your list and ours likely look the same. If you're a guy, the list likely includes, if not all, at least a few of these names: Taylor Crabb, Anders Mol, Phil Dalhausser, Casey Patterson, Chase Budinger, Steven van de Velde, Robert Meeuwsen, Alex Brouwer. If you're a gal, name such as April Ross, Alix Klineman, Sarah Pavan, Kelly Claes, Sarah Sponcil, Kelley Kolinske, likely came to mind. 

All of these players mentioned have phenomenal swings, and it's no wonder why almost every single one of them will be competing in the Tokyo Olympic Games next month. But thinking of those names is the easy part. Most anyone who watches beach volleyball knows that those players can spike a volleyball as well as anyone on the planet. 

The key question here is why. 

What separates Taylor Crabb from, say, his brother, Trevor? How come Casey Patterson, who loves to make fun of his...

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11 Shoulder Exercises for Beach Volleyball in 1 Minute

 

So often, I’m asked questions about the best ways to warm up or workout for beach volleyball. Professionals have extensive warm up routines that armor their joints and work on their weaknesses. If you’ve been anywhere near a volleyball court in your life, you’ve seen somebody rubbing and rotating their hitting shoulder while their face winces in pain. Even after you've learned how to how to hit a volleyball properly, you can still experience some pain and injuries.

Why are shoulder exercises so important for beach volleyball players?

Injuries in beach usually develop because of muscular imbalances. Micro-tears in your muscle fibers develop into scar tissue when they aren’t given time to heal properly. If you’re pushing your body to the max, that just becomes a part of the game. BUT, when a muscle becomes less pliable, other muscles take over for it and these compensations have a tendency to build on top of each other.

Don’t ignore the...

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Should I Stay or Should I Go: Peel Footwork for Blockers

 

If you're interested in this blog on peel digging and how to play defense in beach volleyball, you may be interested in our serving course, which, of course, is the first line of defense in, ahem, defense. It'll will have you serving more accurately, with more power, in just a few weeks! We also run beach volleyball classes, private lessons and training camps for adults and juniors in Hermosa Beach, CA and Salt Lake City, Utah. We run volleyball vacations in exotic locations around the world. We can even run beach volleyball clinics for your group, club or team in your hometown! Send an email to [email protected]

Blockers block in beach volleyball, right? They're the big goons at the net who are supposed to stay at the net. Correct? 

Yes and no. 

In an ideal world, a blocker would never have to leave the net -- or peel, in volleyball vernacular. In the ideal world, a blocker stays at the net, and the defender covers whatever...

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(NEEDS A LOT OF SEO WORK) Practice Session: Deep Serve to Transition

Here's a great focused serving and defense drill we use at VolleyCamp Hermosa practices.


This works well with 3 players or 2 players and a parent. Click on the Book Now tab to see our upcoming camps or just schedule a 1 on 1 Private Lesson at any time that works for you.

Set up an obstacle (3-4 feet tall) about 6 feet from the back line. We used garbage cans but you can use chairs, beach umbrellas, hurdles etc.

In order to start the drill, the serve must land behind the obstacle without touching it and in the court.
Remember, where the serve lands is not as important as how it crosses the receiver. Serving over a high obstacle ensures a flight path that forces a receiver to move backwards.
The serve is worth one point and a transition kill without taping is worth one point. The team needs 21 to finish the drill. You can see here that in between missed serves our blocker is set up to get high hands defensive reps...

Server misses = coach hit at other...

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Improve Your DIGGING, SETTING, and HITTING in ONE Beach Volleyball Drill!

 

If you're interested in this drill on setting and digging, you may also be interested in our beach volleyball classes , private lessons and training camps for adults and juniors in Hermosa Beach, CA and Salt Lake City, Utah. We run volleyball vacations in exotic locations around the world. We can even run beach volleyball clinics for your group, club or team in your hometown! Send an email to [email protected]

All of us beach volleyball players are looking for that one big thing -- the one lift to get us stronger, the one way to make money so we can continue pursuing this life on the beach, the one thing that'll get us hitting harder, jumping higher, running faster. Sadly, we do not have the answer for some of those things -- you can, however, take our 60-day strength and conditioning program to get you bouncing balls and swat-blocking and running around like Taylor Crabb

Want to show your...

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Beach Volleyball Strategy | Secrets to Winning with Pro Beach Volleyball Player Casey Patterson

 

Thank you for reading! We love that you're interested in beach volleyball! We also run beach volleyball classes, private lessons and training camps for adults and juniors in Hermosa Beach, CA and Salt Lake City, Utah. We run volleyball vacations in exotic locations around the world. We can even run beach volleyball clinics for your group, club or team in your hometown! Send an email to [email protected]

Casey Patterson is known for, among a wide variety of elements of beach volleyball, his personality. He dances. Laughs. Talks more than your typical beach volleyball player -- sometimes, as was the case this past year at AVP Seattle, in the middle of a swing, when he wondered, audibly, what in the world Troy Field was doing when he dared to peel on Patterson. 

It didn't end well for Field. 

This might not seem to be like strategy in the typical sense of the word. That strategy is the Xs and Os -- who to serve and...

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Fix Your Arm Swing: Volleyball Spiking Drills You Can Do Alone at Home

 

Beach volleyball spiking drill for parents and partners: Pass, Set, Spike, Catch

Here's a great beginner drill for volleyball that works on ball control and spiking.  I get to meet lots of volleyball parents who just want to help their kids get better but they don't know how. This basic hitting drill for volleyball is an easy way for parents, coaches and friends to help the volleyball players in their lives get some extra reps.

If you want to practice attacking on your own and do some drills at home, you can also think about drawing a big box on a wall somewhere. If you can throw a very high ball to yourself, bump it, set it and then spike it into the box, you get a point!

Basically what we're going to do is have one person, the player, use three touches. They have to pass to themselves, set to themselves, and then hit at a target or a catcher.

Parent: If you're a non volleyball player, if you can catch it, that qualifies as a good hit from the player. Just...

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