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Volleyball is one of the most popular sports in the nation, and adult volleyball leagues are on the rise as a result. If you love playing volleyball and you’d like to join a league, but you’re concerned that your athletic prowess leaves something to be desired, you are not alone. The following tips will help you train like a professional volleyball player and improve your game.
Start with the Basics
If you truly want to train like a professional volleyball player, it’s important that you think like a pro. Before you even start training, consider what it actually takes to play. You’ll need explosive energy, and you’ll need to be fast and agile. Volleyball games require plenty of movement, and you’ll need to be able to get under the ball quickly. The quicker you are, and the more agile you are, the more of an asset you will be to your team. When you train, be sure that you focus on exercises and drills that focus less on sheer strength and more on developing your agility, speed, and explosive movements.
Always Start by Warming Up
Volleyball players don’t just run out on the court and start playing; doing so puts them at significant risk for injuries like sprains and pulled muscles. Before you start volleyball drills, you need to warm up. Jogging or riding a stationary bicycle at a light intensity is excellent. The goal here is to get your blood moving and your body ready for the workout to come. Gentle, static stretching of arms, shoulders, and legs can help avoid injury as well.
Workout Options for Volleyball Players
Now that you’re all warmed up and ready to push yourself a little harder, it’s time for your workout. Again, remember that exercises should focus less on building significant muscle and more on developing your speed, agility, endurance, and movement to the ball. For this reason, if weightlifting and dumbbells are part of your workout, make sure you use low weight and high reps. Focus your workouts on exercises that help you build or maintain your endurance and strength in your shoulders, legs, and core.
Running Volleyball Drills
Workouts are important if you want to train like a pro, but you will only get better at volleyball when you run the appropriate drills regularly. Here are three types of drills you should consider:
• Skill & Movement Drills – These types of drills are designed to help you improve your individual skills through repetition. For example, you may run drills where you work on footwork and spike the ball repeatedly, serve ball after ball to different zones on the court, and bump or dig the ball over and over again.
• Tactical & Strategic Drills – These focus more on team effort and coordination than on individual skills. Communication is key here, and teams should work together to practice plays that maximize each player’s abilities and strengths, while taking advantage of their opponent’s weaknesses.
• Conditioning Drills – Conditioning drills are exactly what the name implies – drills designed to help condition yourself for games. Typically, volleyball coaches assign conditioning drills based on game-like situations so players can work on their endurance, quickness and agility. Players practice explosive movements combined with relentless energy to enable them to make the best play possible on every ball without ever giving up.
Playing volleyball like a pro requires more than just practice. You need to take the time to improve your speed, agility, movement, and focus regularly. Honing your skills and abilities through regular workouts and drills is vital, and if you can get your entire team involved, it’s even better and more fun.
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