So how does a child get started – and prepare for playing on teams as she grows up? The YMCA programs are a great place to start. As young as age 8, girls can take part in twice a week programs in the Spring and Fall to learn basic skills and the rules of the game. The environment is fun, educational and may inspire your child to want to play the sport beyond just recreationally (as it did mine).
YMCA skills programs go from ages 8 to 15, with children placed in three different groups based on age and ability. As your child progresses, they will receive more “playing time” in scrimmages among program participants. This brings us to the next question: what if my child wants to play volleyball competitively on an actual team?
After developing skills through the YMCA programs, your child may want to go on to try out for her middle school volleyball team or a club team. Most public middle schools allow girls to begin playing the sport in 7th grade; private schools typically start at younger grades. Girls as young as 10 or 11 can try out for club teams that play in the winter months in Saturday tournaments around the state. Check out our club page for more details.
So learn the sport and get a great foundation through the Y programs. The additional ball “touches” and serving opportunities they’ll get will benefit them in the off-season – and help them prep for team tryouts.