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New 3rd Grade Volleyball Coach. Help!

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I am a new coach to volleyball. I coach girls basketball and fastpitch softball. I am at a small parochial school. They couldn't find a coach and I said I would do it. I have 7 girls on the team. I went to a coaching clinic hear in Northern Kentucky at the NKYVC club. It was good but most of the info was geared towards older girls. This is more of an instructional league so i will be limited to a few practices. I want these girls to have fun and still prepare them for the next year when they do play more competitive games. Any ideas on what to teach a bunch of girls new to the sport? Any drill suggestions would be great.


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Unfortunately, almost every volleyball clinic available is geared towards high school aged players so it is really tough to find age and skill appropriate drills and games for grade-schoolers or beginners.

Depending on what "a few practices" means, I would concentrate on teaching your players how to underhand serve, forearm and overhead (setting) passing.

In very short sessions, demonstrate each skill as a whole, let the players try the skill in pairs or threes, make corrections one part at a time, let them try again, then, if they even slightly can complete the skill, put it into a game and let them play with the skill for awhile. Something as simple as serving over a lowered net in pairs, while they compete against their teammates can work at first. Forearm passing and overhead passing can be done the same way. Give the players a few Key thoughts or technique points (eg: for forearm passing: to set their passing platform correctly, you might use "hands and arms together - wrists down" as a Key. Again, after they can even slightly do the skill correctly, make a competitive game out of the skill - keep score. I would be very patient with overhead passing as many young girls and boys are not comfortable using their hands, with fingers spread, to pass the ball. Take is slow, and again, use a good demonstration, with very few words, then have them work through the skill using Key words to help with individual parts of the skill that they might be having difficulty with. You will find that it is especially helpfull if you can have players close to their own age who can do the skill demonstrate it. (they know YOU can do it, but not so sure that someone their own age can) After you have spent a short time on each of these basic skills, put your players into shortsided games - 3v3, 4v4 - and let them play. Encourage the good technique and almost ignore the bad (for awhile). You can also help them learn ball trajectory simply by having them play catch as part of their "warmup".

Oh, and use the Volley-Lite (or similiar) ball as it is the ball for under 12's and much easier to serve, etc for younger players.

While there are book-loads of drills available, at this age you may do just as well making up drills of your own based on what your players can and cannot do. But I'm sure you will get plenty of suggestions here.

If i can help with any specifics, just let me/us know.

Good luck!


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