Strength training for volleyball involves movements like push-ups, body weight lunges, and core exercises. This is type of training is all you need for a great start getting stronger for volleyball.
The best strength training for volleyball will depend on the individual athlete and team goals.
However, here are some general principles of strength training for volleyball.
Compound Movements. A compound movement, such as squats, deadlifts, and pull-ups, are highly effective at building overall strength and muscle mass. To jump high in volleyball, you need to train the muscle groups that are involved in jumping. Before you jump, your ankles, knees, and hips flex. As you jump, your body performs a movement called a "triple extension". This refers to the extension of the 3 major joints of the lower body (ankles, knees, and hips). Compound exercises such as squat jumps activate muscles involved in the triple extension.
Adding hip flexion and extension exercises to your training will help you become stronger at jumping to hit and block in volleyball.
Movements that work multiple muscle groups at once are more functional, meaning, training body as it would naturally perform in volleyball or daily life. The best exercises a volleyball player involve pushing, pulling and rotating which will help to improve coordination and balance.
Specificity. Your volleyball strength training needs to be specific to the demands of volleyball. For example, a volleyball player that needs to hit a volleyball with a lot of power may benefit from exercises that focus on shoulder and upper back strength.
Plyometrics. Plyometric movements such as jumping to box and squat jumps, can help improve a volleyball player's explosiveness and power for jumping higher in volleyball. The medicine ball rotational throw is an exercise that improves the transfer of power from the lower to upper body. This exercise develops power in the core and hip muscles that lead to stronger and more explosive spikes and serves.
Periodization: Periodization is a training method of dividing a workout program into specific phases or cycles. Periodization for volleyball players will help athletes avoid overtraining and gradually become stronger and more athletic volleyball players. An example of periodization would be creating a separate workout programs for in-season vs off-season.
Progressive overload: Progressive overload involves gradually increasing the intensity and difficulty of a workout over a period of time. You want to progressively challenge the muscles to promote muscular growth. When done properly, you allow the body to adapt to the workouts which helps avoid overtraining and injury.
Here are 5 compound movements that are great for improving strength for volleyball.
Make sure to keep your knees tracking in line with your toes and avoid letting them collapse inward. Keep your chest up and engage your core throughout the movement to maintain good posture. Use a weight that challenges you but allows you to maintain proper form.
Start with a lighter weight until you have mastered the movement to avoid injury. Keep your spine in a neutral position throughout the movement to avoid rounding your back.
Avoid using your arms to lift the dumbbells. Instead, focus on engaging your glutes, hamstrings, and core to perform the lift. Keep the dumbbells close to your body throughout the movement.
Keep your torso upright throughout the movement to avoid leaning forward or rounding your back. Keep your front knee directly above your ankle to avoid placing excess stress on your knee joint.
Use a weight that challenges you but allows you to maintain proper form. Start with a shorter stride length and gradually increase as you become more comfortable with the movement. Engage your core throughout the movement to maintain good posture.
Keep your chest up and your back straight throughout the movement to maintain good posture. Use your arms to generate momentum and power for your jump.
Land softly by bending your knees and hips to absorb the impact, rather than landing with locked joints. Start with a lower jump height and gradually increase as you become more comfortable with the movement.
Here are 3 strength training for volleyball exercises for becoming a stronger hitter.
Shoulder external rotation with a resistance band.
Use a light resistance band to start, and gradually increase resistance as you become more comfortable with the movement. Keep your elbow close to your body throughout the movement to isolate the rotator cuff muscles.
Control the movement on both the inward and outward rotation to maintain proper form.
Keep your core engaged and avoid arching your back during the movement.
Scapular retraction exercise.
Focus on squeezing your shoulder blades together and pulling them back, rather than shrugging your shoulders up towards your ears. Keep your shoulders down and relaxed throughout the movement to avoid unnecessary tension.
Engage your core muscles to maintain proper posture throughout the movement. Start with a small range of motion and gradually increase as you become more comfortable with the movement. You can also perform this exercise with a resistance band by anchoring the band to a stationary object and pulling it towards your body with your arms at your sides.
Dumbbell shoulder press.
Start with a light weight and gradually increase as you become more comfortable with the movement. Keep your elbows close to your body throughout the movement to avoid unnecessary strain on your shoulders.
Keep your back straight and your core engaged to maintain proper posture. Exhale as you press the dumbbells upward, and inhale as you lower them back down. You can also perform this exercise seated, using a bench with back support.
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