Wednesday, 22 May 2024

Going Inside to Play Outside

MANHATTAN BEACH, California (July 21, 2019) –

A place known for its cold and damp weather for most of the year may not seem like the ideal location for beach volleyball. However, Dakine Volleyball Club in Tacoma, Washington, has defied expectations and brought the sport to the Pacific Northwest.

With 44 members competing in the 2019 Beach Tour Junior Championships (NBTJC), Dakine Volleyball Club stands out as the club with the highest number of participants nationwide. Their success is evident as Dakine members claimed both gold and silver in the Girls 16U Regional competition, which concluded on Sunday.

The Benefits of Indoor Training

Playing beach volleyball in unfavorable weather conditions is challenging. To overcome this obstacle, Dakine Volleyball Club provides its members with three indoor courts for year-round practice, in addition to outdoor courts available during good weather.

Practicing indoors has its advantages, but it’s difficult to replicate the natural elements present outdoors. “When you’re inside, you don’t get the natural elements that come with playing outside,” says Samantha O’Connor, a player from the Girls 16U Region Division. “There’s no wind inside, and it’s really hard for us in the winter to gain experience playing in the wind. When we come here, it’s kind of a big shock.”

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Making the Most of the Conditions

While indoor training may lack certain aspects of outdoor play, there is one advantage to be found. “One good thing about our sand inside is that it’s super deep, so it’s harder to jump in,” says Maia Nichols from the Girls 18U National Open Division. “When we get here, it’s a little bit easier to jump and hit the ball.”

Adapting to outdoor conditions, particularly the wind, can be a challenge. However, the Dakine players approach it with determination. “You just have to do the best you can when you get down here,” they say.

Seeking Strong Competition

Apart from the differing weather conditions, Dakine members also value the opportunity to face a more diverse range of competitors. Club director Ariana Hannemann explains, “Up in the Pacific Northwest, most of the time, the top three to five teams are all Dakine teams. These are the kids they train with year-round. They want to play against as many different players as they can. It’s really good for us to come down here and have our weaknesses exposed so we can go home and work on them.”

Many Dakine players spend a significant portion of their summers in more traditional beach volleyball destinations, competing and gaining valuable experience. Scarlett Dahls, Nichols’ partner, emphasizes the importance of these experiences. “If you’re down here, it’s because you really want to be here, and you love it because obviously we aren’t as lucky to have beautiful beaches like this in our backyard. During the months we don’t have school, and we can be down here, the competition is tough. Everyone wants to be down here.”

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With 16 more competitors than any other club at NBTJC, it’s clear that Dakine’s dedication to the sport is unmatched.

FAQs

Q: How does Dakine Volleyball Club train during the winter months?

A: Dakine Volleyball Club has three indoor courts that allow for year-round practice, ensuring that their members can maintain their skills despite the challenging weather conditions.

Q: What advantages does playing indoors offer to Dakine Volleyball Club members?

A: Playing indoors allows Dakine members to train in a controlled environment and develop their skills without being affected by external factors like wind. Additionally, the club’s indoor sand is deeper, making it a greater challenge to jump, thereby improving their performance when they transition to outdoor play.

Q: Why does Dakine Volleyball Club travel to participate in competitions?

A: By competing in different locations, Dakine players are exposed to a wider range of opponents, allowing them to develop their skills and identify areas for improvement. This experience helps them level up their game and become more well-rounded players.

Summary

Dakine Volleyball Club in Tacoma, Washington, has defied the odds and brought beach volleyball to the Pacific Northwest. Despite the challenging weather conditions, the club provides its members with three indoor courts for year-round practice, allowing them to maintain their skills even in unfavorable conditions. While indoor training may not fully replicate outdoor play, Dakine members benefit from the deeper sand, which improves their jumping and hitting abilities. The club also values the opportunity to face diverse competition, as it exposes weaknesses and helps them become stronger players. Dakine Volleyball Club’s dedication and commitment to the sport are evident in their impressive participation numbers at the National Beach Tour Junior Championships.

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