Volleyball Equipment Checklist: 7 Items You Must Have
One of the best parts of the sport of volleyball is that anyone can play as long as you have the correct volleyball equipment.
Regardless of skill level, you will likely need many of the same things.
The secret is:
Don’t go buying every volleyball related item, because you might not need it all.
There are several aspects to consider before making purchases of volleyball equipment...
We will break down those areas and present a volleyball equipment checklist of the things you must have as a player and some great things to have as a coach.
Questions to Ask Before Purchasing Volleyball Equipment:
Where will I put all this stuff!?
While it is admirable to want every new item, training gadget, and top of the line product available…
It may not make sense for your space
An automated serving machine is a great tool to have but might not fit in your studio apartment.
What can I afford?
Budget is always a major factor in deciding what to buy.
As we move forward with our lists of items for players and coaches, we will start with must-haves and work our way into beneficial extras.
This is how you should think about things with your budget in mind.
When considering what to buy and how big your budget is, put safety at the top of the list.
Players should be focused on shoes and knee pads, while coaches should make sure all equipment is safe to have around.
Who is going to help me carry this?
If you do not have the luxury of a “home gym” dedicated to you or your volleyball club, you have to keep your ability to transport equipment in mind.
This does not just ask if you are capable of carrying things but how quickly equipment can be set up or torn down.
You do not want to spend valuable gym time setting up complicated training tools.
Why am I buying this?
This question could be asked ahead of purchasing any item, not just volleyball equipment!
What is your reasoning for getting this particular piece of equipment?
Is it applicable to your level of volleyball?
Do you have a goal for it?
Will your players use it?
These questions can save you money and help you develop your overall approach to the game.
The Absolute Must-Have Volleyball Equipment
The equipment in this group is made up of items that are actually required to play the game of volleyball.
Regardless of the level of play, age group, or scoring format, these things are necessary.
(1) The Net
One of the key pieces of equipment is the volleyball net.
Without it, you are simply playing a round of “Pepper”.
There are many different sizes available these days for use in smaller spaces or recreational settings, and they should be set at different heights depending on skill / age.
You can also purchase sets that have everything you need to properly hang a net:
- A net
- The poles
- A rope/hook system
If you purchase a set, you can look for one that comes along with some of the other must-have equipment listed below.
(2) The Ball
The game is called volleyball for a reason!
Obviously, a ball is necessary but the quality of your volleyball might be the big decision you need to make.
When it comes to the type of volleyball you will want to consider cost, durability, and playability.
The cost range is quite significant in the world of volleyballs so the choice is yours but you will definitely need one.
The Equipment You Will Want to Have
Do you need these pieces to play the game?
Will they be beneficial to almost every level of player?
Keep your questions from earlier in mind as you evaluate whether this list of volleyball equipment might be right for you!
(3) Knee Pads
While you see many players with them on but not quite protecting their knees, these pads can be a lifesaver for indoor players.
Of course, knee pads can prevent hideous bruises and that shocking feeling of a blow to the patella.
They can also help prevent long term knee issues.
Knee pads have become far more stylish over time and will allow you or your players to give their full effort without the mental block of landing on their knees.
There are various styles that fit every sized player and are available from heavy-duty to thinner sleeves.
If you are playing on the beach, you can probably skip this item.
Otherwise, a good pair of shoes is important to playing your best.
Most cross trainers are useful for lower-level volleyball players but high-level players should invest in specially made volleyball-specific shoes.
These shoes are supportive in the right areas and absorb the typical shocks of a volleyball match.
Volleyball shoes can be found in many sports stores but can also be purchased online
Just remember, proper fit is vital with athletic shoes so be prepared to try on and send back to exchange if you have purchased shoes on the internet.
(5) Proper Gym Bag
If you bring your own ball, pump, extra equipment, or anything more than yourself, a good duffle bag is a great item to have.
Using your typical knapsack could lead to some unpleasant odors emanating from the forgotten pair of gym socks left behind.
(6) Equipment Bag
Balls, poles, antennae, towels, pumps, and training equipment are all items that can be carried in an appropriate equipment bag.
If you are a mobile coach without a home gym, being able to transport equipment efficiently will make life much easier.
Volleyballs can deflate.
Varying temperatures during transport or simple use can lead to a ball losing air.
Having a pump handy whenever a volleyball is being used is a great idea.
Pro tip: Get a pump with the flexible tube attached to avoid snapping needles off in the ball.
The Equipment to Train Great Players
If you are a coach with a team looking to improve or a player seeking maximization of your skills, training aids are tools that can get you over the top.
Here are some pieces of equipment that might help hone areas needing improvement:
a. Serving Aids
To help improve players’ serving consistency, accuracy, and power.
Some serving aids are relatively simplistic like those attaching the ball to the player by a rope around the waist. This keeps them from shagging balls every 20 serves.
The most impactful thing you can have for a player looking to improve their service game is a ball basket/cart loaded with balls.
Doing is learning and serving the ball is the best way to improve.
b. Setting Aids
Beneficial for setters to improve accuracy and strength.
The most popular tool for setters is a setting basket that receives sets and funnels the ball into a basket.
This equipment provides valuable feedback, as a bad set will need to be shagged by the setter.
Any hand strengthening tools are also great for setters to have.
c. Hitting Aids
Gives hitters the opportunity to practice their approach, arm swing, and follow-through by holding the ball in a fixed position until struck.
You can emulate perfect, good, or bad sets with these aids to present hitters with different “looks”.
Volleyball is a great game that can be played in a variety of places with a few basic pieces of equipment.
From beginner to advanced player, it is important to consider what you need and what you hope to accomplish.
In any case, get that ball and a net, and get out there to play some volleyball!