In elementary and high school, most of my friends were really into volleyball while I played basketball and never gave volleyball a thought. I stopped playing sports altogether in university and after being a bit “unfit” during those years, I figured I should pick up a sport again. After a few injuries sustained in basketball, I wanted to look for a more non-contact but physical sport and that’s how I found my interest in volleyball.
As with learning everything else, I knew the fundamentals and the foundation of volleyball was critical. You can’t build a pyramid upside down, you know? I wasn’t very motivated to learn something new entirely. But if I was going to dedicate my time to something, I wanted to get good at it. Contrary to popular belief, it doesn’t take 10,000 hours to get good at something. It can simply take 20 hours equating to 45 minutes a day for a month. Now that’s not exactly how dedicated I was, but it helps to put into perspective that it doesn’t take 10 years to learn something new.
I started doing some research and looked for local volleyball clinics and found one in the Toronto area.
If you want to improve your skills, clinics are a great place to start. As I improved slowly, I began looking for places to drop in and play. Practice does make (close to) perfect. It’s a good idea to participate in clinics as well as go to drop-ins so you can constantly apply what you’ve learned to real life games. It provides a sense of satisfaction and success. Since I was new to the sport, the clinic allowed me to drop in to spectate before committing to their 10 week long program. I started from their beginner class and practiced enough to get to their advance class.
Believe it or not, Youtube also played a big part in my interest. My girlfriend always makes fun of me, but when I get interested in something, I’ll watch Youtube videos for hours to learn the skill. As a more visual person, watching something slowly, continuously was a good way for me to learn. But remember, take what you learn to the clinic so they can help correct and improve your posture. You don’t want to injure yourself from doing something you learned on Youtube!
In the next post, I’ll introduce you to a few Youtube channels I found particularly helpful. Stay tuned…