Wednesday, 29 May 2024

Ancora Imparo Redux: Tips to Keep Learning at Home

These unprecedented days have given us a unique opportunity to dedicate more time to learning, which is important for both coaches and players. Whether you’re a part of a team sport or an individual athlete, keeping the spirit of learning alive is crucial. While video chats can help maintain team unity, there are many other ways to continue growing and developing your skills while at home. In this article, we will explore some tips and techniques to help you “ancora imparo” (always learning) and make the most of this time.

Practice with ANY Family Member

Coaches, feel free to share these tips with your players to help them stay engaged and improve their skills while staying at home. USA Volleyball’s COVID Resources page also offers additional tips and resources. When it comes to our sport, passing, setting, hitting, and serving are the core skills. You can practice these skills with any family member who is available at your stay-in-place location. Even your grandparents can be your setter! Don’t worry if they can’t set accurately or legally – the randomness of their sets will challenge you and make you a more versatile player. Start with low sets and gradually progress to more challenging ones. You can also practice passing into a trashcan or playing sitting volleyball with a balloon or beach ball in a room or even on the porch.

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Rekindle and Share Your Love of the Game

Take this time to reconnect with your love for volleyball. Reach out to a former teammate or your first coach and have a chat about why you fell in love with the sport in the first place. You can also connect with other teams from around the world and share your experiences and passion for volleyball. Don’t forget to contact your USAV Region office and find out how you or your team can contribute to growing the game. You can even use this time to learn how to be a referee or scorekeeper and deepen your understanding of the game.

Dive into the World of Volleyball

Volleyball is an international sport with participation from 221 countries. There are many resources available worldwide to help you learn and improve. The International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) provides development materials on their website under the “Growing the Game” tab. The NORCECA region, which includes North and Central America and the Caribbean, also offers valuable information on their development commission webpage. The European Volleyball Confederation (CEV) produces great development material as well. World ParaVolley oversees global events for volleyball players with disabilities, including the Paralympics. Their website features development materials for sitting volleyball, a game that can be enjoyed by anyone. Join the Volleyball Coaches and Trainers Facebook group to connect with coaches from all over the world and participate in impactful discussions.

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Listen to Podcasts, Facebook Live, and More

Make the most of your time by listening to podcasts and participating in live broadcasts. There are several podcasts that focus on coaching, sports science, and enhancing performance. Some notable ones include “Coach Your Brains Out,” “Changing the Game Project,” “The Real Science of Sport,” “The Talent Equation,” “Volleyball Coaching Wizards,” “Train Ugly – The Learning Lab,” “Perception & Action,” “Science in Volleyball Untangled,” “Paradigm Sports Canada,” and “United Kingdom Coaching.” Take advantage of these resources to gain valuable insights and deepen your understanding of the game.

Remember to Laugh

Finally, let’s not forget to lighten the mood and have a laugh. Here are some humorous scenarios shared by Heidi Anderson and Shelley Small of the USAV CAP program:

  • 9:00: When Leftovers are Way Too Left Over
  • 9:30: How to Hit the Mute Button Lightning Fast
  • 10:00: GoToMeeting Ain’t for Concerts
  • 11:00: Getting Your Neighbor Out of Your Yard Because He Just Doesn’t Get It
  • 12:00: Angling Your Laptop Camera For Maximum Results
  • 12:30: Addressing a Co-worker Who Drools
  • 1:00: Will Barking During Skype Meetings Come Back on Your Performance Review?
  • 2:00: Budget a Day Keeps Me Away
  • 3:00: Remembering How to Fix Your Hair 101
  • 4:00: What to do When You’re Wearing the Wrong Sponsor’s Sweats During a Zoom Meeting

In conclusion, we hope these tips and suggestions will help you make the most of your time at home and continue to embrace the spirit of learning. Remember, “ancora imparo” – we are always learning. Stay safe, keep practicing, and never stop growing.

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