KIVA, based in Louisville, Kentucky, started a boys development program in the spring of 2018 with a short term goal of providing quality volleyball training to boys ages 10-18, and a long term goal of offering boys travel teams.
The Catholic School Athletic Association (CSAA) began offering boys volleyball combined with the growth of boys high school drove the interest and growth for boys volleyball in Louisville. The seasons at the school level are very short so the boys began looking for something more to continue to play, which has opened the doors for KIVA to offer Development Seasons for them. Not to mention, like many girls volleyball programs, the brothers watch their sisters train and compete all year long, and want to play too!
Here is some information on how this boys program operated in the first 6 months.
- KIVA used all existing equipment: nets, balls, ball carts, training aids. No additional costs were incurred.
- All marketing was done through social media, e-blasts using current email distribution lists, and emails to the CSAA Coaches and Athletic Directors. Staff time spent on marketing was approximately 1-2 hours per week.
- KIVA Youth Program Director Courtney Robison master trained every session. She created the practice plan and ran the practice with the help of 3 male coaches who had high school, club or college playing experience. The male coaches provided male role models for the boys just beginning to play volleyball.
- Coaches were paid between $10-15 per hour. Training sessions were 1.5 hours long.
- The Developmental Program focused on teaching the fundamentals of the game.
- There was an 8-1 player to coach ratio.
- Athletes trained once per week for the 5 week developmental season.
- A lot of time was placed on serving and passing, which was difficult for the boys because they love to work on attacking.
- Emphasis was placed on utilizing three contacts on each possession.
Growth and Success
- KIVA anticipated 20 boys to participate in year one of the program, but exceeded expectations with 40 boys.
- They then created a Boys Summer Skills Training Program to continue offering two training opportunities each week for 1.5 hours. Grades 4th-8th train from 6:00-7:30pm and Grades 9th-12th train from 7:30-9:00pm on Tuesdays and Thursday. The total cost for 4 weeks of training (12 hours) in the Summer Skills Program is $240.
If you are looking to start a boys program, know that you can do it on a minimal budget with little expenses. A boys development program is a great way to begin. Offer boys the opportunity to train with only boys in a competitive and challenging environment. Give them a place to learn the game, and develop their volleyball skills. Provide education on the opportunities to play at the college level, and expose them to coaches who have walked down that path.