Volleyball athletes frequently struggle with physical limitations such as mobility deficits, poor movement patterns, and decreased strength. The recent hiatus from practice and training means that these problem areas will be more exaggerated than ever. Common places for mobility issues such as the thoracic spine, shoulder, hip and ankles will be at high risk once sports resume. Specifically, the increased or decreased mobility of these areas can lead to decreased power, agility and compensatory movement patterns. If not acknowledged and handled properly by teams and their coaching staff there will likely be a large increase in injuries not to mention a decrease in overall player performance.
To help provide some guidance and structure to club and program directors Outlier Sports Consulting and JVA have teamed up to provide our own form of resources, guidance and structure with the “COVID-19 Training Calendar”. This calendar was designed specially for JVA members and is comprehensive in addressing all areas of athlete engagement and development. The calendar is designed to be a guide and can be used exactly as is or as a template to create your own custom calendar. You may utilize your own resources to fill in the specific days however Outlier has provided some example workouts for week 1. View the workouts by clicking the hyperlink, completing the short questionnaire with password JVA to gain access to the workout. This information is used to develop future content.
The calendar includes 6 components:
Mobility training encourages athletes to help their bodies move better so they can move more efficiently on the court. Mobility training addresses all the joints and muscles in the body but will focus more heavily on high stress areas specific to volleyball players. The calendar provides a sample mobility workout for week 1. You may continue to utilize this workout for the remainder of the calendar, create your own, or contact Outlier to have a more comprehensive program developed for you.
Volleyball Skill Development
It is important for athletes to continue to practice volleyball specific drills and skills. However, it is paramount that they have purposeful practice for at least some of that time. Providing structured workouts and drills and helping dedicate time to developing volleyball-significant skills is critical during this period.
This encourages athletes to watch volleyball film of themselves or high-level players; giving them a look at the game from a different lens and keeping them engaged with the sport. Visualization practice is a tremendous tool for all athletes, and film review is a great technique to train visualization and strengthen understanding of the game.
It is still important for athletes to work on strength, power and endurance during this down time. We encourage you as club directors to provide resources, structure and guidance to help maximize their training. Training programs should be tailored for the club’s training needs, ages, and current strength levels. We recommend that your plan be reviewed by a professional to ensure safety and growth of your athletes. We have provided a sample strength workout for week 1. You may continue to utilize this workout for the remainder of the calendar, create your own, or contact Outlier to have a more comprehensive program developed for you.
Injuries are always a concern for youth athletes, but the risk of injuries will be significantly higher when returning from this break. Setting aside specific time for injury prevention work provides an opportunity for the athletes to work on exercises that can help prepare them to return to volleyball in peak physical shape. We have provided a sample injury prevention workout for week 1. You may continue to utilize this workout for the remainder of the calendar, create your own, or contact Outlier to have a more comprehensive program developed for you.
This encourages players to incorporate other athletic activities and movements to help develop their overall athleticism. Encouraging your athletes to practice this can help with injury prevention, improve overall performance and maintain consistent activity levels during this down time.
To view April’s Sample Training Calendar click HERE.
For related reading and resources visit the COVID-19 Club Resources page.
Outlier specializes in providing consulting recommendations and resources for training and injury management to youth sports programs around the country. For more information please visit www.theoutlierstate.com or contact us to schedule a free COVID-19 strategic planning appointment!