Welcome to the beach!
Beach Volleyball 101
Whether you are joining us from the indoor volleyball world or are trying volleyball as a sport for the first time, we welcome you to the RADDEST sport in the world! We look at beach volleyball not only as a sport, but a LIFESTYLE as well. Allow us to share some information to get you started and set you up for success:
Sand is tough to play in, no doubt. You'll be slower if you come from the indoor game, you'll tire faster and your vertical jump will be reduced. BUT, don’t let that discourage you. Manage your energy by taking small steps in the sand - you lose power on long strides. If the sand gets hot, dig your feet a few inches under the top layers to cool them off or put on some sand socks. The upside of sand is that it is forgiving on your joints!
There are no specialized positions like there is with the indoor game - 2 people per side and only left and right side positions. Most beach players are well-rounded and can hit, dig and block. At the higher levels, one player is dedicated to blocking and one to digging. A match consists of three sets, or games. The first team to reach 21 points wins the set (teams must win by two points). Two sets wins the match, and the third tiebreaker set, if necessary, is only played to 15 points.
Teams switch sides every seven points. There is no rotation between partners, but serving alternates. Lines are considered in and let serves (when the ball grazes the net and goes over) are legal. Three touches are allowed per side and a block counts as one touch. Sets must be clean (no spinning of the ball), this skill is tough, so most people start with bump setting and gradually practice hand setting.
You do NOT need a partner to join a beach volleyball club. Club directors will help guide you and find you a good fit for a partner when you are ready to compete. You will have so much fun at tournaments and may even meet a potential partner from a different club while competing!
Show up with a positive attitude from the start. Beach volleyball can be challenging at first, but once you get the hang of it, feel the fitness level set in and meet amazing teammates and coaches, you will never look back!
BEACH VOLLEYBALL FUN FACT: Beach volleyball most likely originated in 1915 on Waikiki Beach in Hawaii, while the modern two-player game originated in Santa Monica, California. It has been an Olympic sport since the 1996 Summer Olympics.