Hello Athletes and Parents!
My name is Carol Bunting and, as of September 2023, I’m a Club Director for VAVA! I’m so excited to be a part of this fantastic community, so I wanted to introduce myself and give my advice before the start of the 2023-2024 season.
I’ve been a player, a coach, an official, a spectator, and now a director of club volleyball, so I’ve seen the sport from almost every angle possible. I know what it’s like to anticipate the start of the season. You’re trying to figure out if your position is still the right one for you and how many clinics you need to attend to be ready for tryouts and how long it will take to break in new shoes because the old ones might be too small now.
I’m here to tell you: the position you want to play is the right one for you, you need to go to exactly as many clinics as will make you feel prepared, and if it really is time for new shoes, a shoe stretcher can do wonders. Here are some more tips to help you before and throughout tryouts:
- Know where you’re going. Know what age group you fall into (this classification guide will help), know what time and where the tryouts are, know how long it will take you to get there, and know what you need to bring with you. Know that you are 100% prepared for all the small details and logistics so that you only have to focus on volleyball when you get there.
- Be ready to give 100% effort. I’ll let you in on a secret: being a great teammate isn’t just about being a great volleyball player. When you go to tryouts, coaches aren’t just looking at your skills, they’re looking at how willing you are to shag balls, talk loudly on the court, cheer on other athletes, listen to directions and feedback, and mostly, give everything your all. The best teams are the ones that have the highest energy and that are giving the most effort. Aim to be a part of one of those teams!
- Be yourself. Volleyball is a team sport, and VAVA is a community. Coaches and your future teammates want to get to know you from the very beginning (yes, that means tryouts).
- HYDRATE! You will learn very quickly that I never go anywhere without at least one water bottle, so you’ll hear this one from me a lot. Drink water before, during, and after every single clinic, tryout, and practice. Your body needs hydration, so drink lots and lots of water!
- Finally, and I really do think this is the most important one, have fun! Volleyball is fun, having teammates is fun, getting coached is fun, and the potential that comes with every new season is SUPER fun. You are here because you like playing volleyball, so don’t lose sight of that!
I’m sure I could tell you a hundred things about tryouts and starting a new season, but these are just a few big ones. I can’t wait for this season to get started!