Volleyball Tryouts: Drills, Skills, Preparation, Conditioning, Tips

Coaches examine players during volleyball tryouts to construct the squad for the future season. There are tryouts for school teams, club teams, and even collegiate programs at different levels.

The goal is still to find the most talented and committed players to help the club succeed, even though the exact structure and standards may change.

It’s crucial to keep in mind that tryouts involve more than just individual skill testing. In addition, coaches evaluate communication, attitude, teamwork, and flexibility. Being a good fit is just as crucial as having talent.

Volleyball Tryouts

Preparation Before Tryouts

The path to success at tryouts starts well before the first evaluation day. Here are some crucial steps for preparation:

Physical Conditioning

Ensure that your physical condition is at its peak. Frequent exercise regimens emphasizing strength, flexibility, endurance, and agility will be advantageous. In addition to increasing performance, physical preparation lowers the chance of injury.

Skills Practice

Dedicate time to hone your volleyball skills, including serving, passing, setting, hitting, blocking, and digging. Fine-tuning these fundamentals is vital to impressing the coaches during tryouts.

Learn Volleyball Rules and Strategies

Having a deep understanding of the rules, strategies, and positions in volleyball can set you apart. Coaches appreciate players who know the game inside out.

Mental Preparation

Mental strength is as important as physical prowess. Practice mental toughness, focus, and resilience. Visualize success and stay positive.

Observe Current Team

If you have access to games or practices of the current team, take the opportunity to observe their playing style and tendencies. Additionally, it can provide valuable insights into what the coaches may be looking for.

Preparation Before Tryouts

Day of Volleyball Tryouts

On tryout day, it is necessary to arrive with the right mindset. Here’s what you can do:

Steps To Follow On Tryout DayDescription
Arrive EarlyPunctuality is a sign of commitment. Arriving early gives you time to warm up, mentally prepare, and demonstrate your eagerness.
Appropriate Attire and GearWear comfortable, appropriate clothing and shoes. Ensure you have all your gear, including knee pads, water bottle, and required forms or documents.
Stay Hydrated and Fuel UpProper hydration and nutrition are crucial to peak performance. Drink water before and during tryouts, and have a light, balanced meal a few hours in advance.
Mental FocusTry to stay calm and focused. Avoid dwelling on the pressure of the situation. Take deep breaths and keep yourself relaxed.

Drills and Skills Evaluation

Tryouts typically begin with a skills assessment. Here’s how you can excel in these drills:

Passing Drills

Focus on your passing technique. Coaches often look for consistent and accurate passing. Additionally, practice various passes, including the forearm pass (bump), overhead pass (set), and serve receive.


Work on serving with accuracy and power. A well-placed serve that puts pressure on the receiving team is highly valued.


Your setting should be precise and consistent. Practice setting to different locations on the court to showcase your versatility.


Hitting drills are a chance to display your attacking skills. Concentrate on proper approach, timing, and placement of hits. Show that you can adjust to different sets.

Blocking and Defense

Blocking and defensive drills allow you to demonstrate your agility and reaction time. Show your ability to read the opponent’s attacks and make successful blocks and digs.

Serving and Serve Receive

Serving accurately and handling serves effectively are vital skills. Additionally, coaches observe your confidence in serve receive and how well you handle tough serves.

Consistency and Adaptability

Consistency is essential, but coaches also appreciate adaptability. Show that you can adjust to different game situations and strategies.

Volleyball Tryouts

Mental Preparation and Confidence

Your mental game is a significant factor in tryouts. Here are some tips to boost your mental preparation:

Stay Positive

Maintain a positive attitude and self-belief. Positive self-talk can help build confidence.

Focus on the Process

Concentrate on executing each skill to the best of your ability rather than worrying about the outcome.

Control Nerves

Nervousness is natural. Practice relaxation techniques to calm nerves and stay focused.


It’s an error-filled game, volleyball. Recover fast if you make a mistake. Coaches value players who can bounce back and grow from mistakes.

Showcasing Your Volleyball IQ

Although it’s frequently disregarded, volleyball IQ can have a significant impact. Here’s how to demonstrate your gaming expertise:


Demonstrate a good understanding of court positioning and rotations. Show that you know where to be at all times.

Anticipate Plays

Try to read the game and anticipate the opponent’s plays. Making the right move before hitting the ball can make you a valuable asset.


Effective communication is vital in volleyball. Be vocal on the court, calling for the ball and supporting teammates.

Teamwork and Communication

Teamwork is a core aspect of volleyball. Coaches observe how well you work with others. Here’s how to shine in this area:

Support Teammates

Encourage and support your teammates during drills. Show that you are a positive and collaborative player.

Passing and Setting Accuracy

During drills, ensure that you pass accurately to the setter, and if you’re the setter, provide precise sets to your hitters.

Verbal and Non-Verbal Communication

Effective communication includes both verbal and non-verbal cues. Maintain eye contact with your teammates and use clear hand signals.

Teamwork And Communication

Standing Out During Scrimmages

Scrimmages are an opportunity for you to show your skills in the game. Here’s how to make an impact:

Team Player

Play your role within the team. Show that you can adapt to different positions and situations.


Consistency in performance is highly regarded. Deliver quality plays throughout the scrimmage.


If you have the experience and confidence, take on a leadership role on the court. Coaches value players who can lead by example.

Fitness and Conditioning

Volleyball is physically demanding. Demonstrating your fitness and conditioning can give you an edge:


Show that you have the endurance to perform at your best throughout a practice or scrimmage.

Quick Recovery

Demonstrate a quick recovery between plays. It’s a sign of excellent conditioning and mental resilience.

Speed and Agility

Volleyball requires speed and agility. Highlight your ability to move swiftly and react to the ball.

Dealing with Nerves and Pressure

It’s natural to feel nervous during tryouts. Here are some strategies to manage nerves:

Deep Breathing

Take deep breaths to calm your nerves. Controlled breathing can help reduce anxiety.

Visualize Success

Mental imagery of successful plays can boost confidence and reduce anxiety.

Stay in the Present

Avoid overthinking the outcome. Focus on the current drill or play.

Learn from Mistakes

Mistakes happen. It would be best if you had to learn from these mistakes and try to avoid that mistakes.

Volleyball Tryouts

Receiving Feedback and Improving

Coaches may provide feedback during or after tryouts. It’s essential to be open to feedback and willing to improve.

Listening and Learning

Listen attentively to what the coaches have to say and learn these things.

Work on Feedback

If your coaches point out any areas for your skill improvement, give time to work on those areas to enhance your skills.

Stay Committed

Even if you don’t make the team, stay committed to your volleyball journey. Seek opportunities to grow and try out again in the future.

Receiving Feedback from  to improve

What Coaches Look For

Coaches assess a range of qualities during tryouts. Here’s what they typically look for:

What Coaches Look ForDescription
Skills and TechniqueYour fundamental skills and technique should be firm, including serving, passing, setting, hitting, blocking, and digging.
Athleticism and Physical ConditioningCoaches appreciate players in excellent physical shape and exhibit agility, endurance, speed, and strength.
Game IntelligenceUnderstanding of the game, positioning, rotations, and strategies is crucial.
Teamwork and CommunicationHow well you collaborate with teammates, communicate on the court, and support others is a significant factor.
Attitude and CoachabilityA positive attitude, adaptability, and willingness to learn and improve are highly valued.
Resilience and Mental ToughnessCoaches look for players who can handle pressure, recover from mistakes, and remain composed.
What Coaches Look For in tryouts


How do you train for volleyball tryouts?

Improve your basic volleyball skills, like hitting, passing, and serving, in order to be ready for trials. Improve your agility and conditioning as well to improve your overall on-court performance.

What should you wear for volleyball tryouts?

Put on supportive athletic shoes and comfy sportswear, such as shorts and a breathable top. Wearing apparel that restricts movement and donning a lot of jewelry is not a good idea during volleyball trials.

Can you wear a pad while playing volleyball?

Knee pads to keep your knees safe when you fall or slide. Padded shorts to keep your hips safe when you dive for the ball. Others, like elbow or forearm pads, ankle or wrist bands, or thumb splints.

How do you not get nervous for volleyball tryouts?

Focus on getting ready, practice often, and keep a positive attitude to calm your nerves before tryouts. Think about your success and seize the chance to show off your skills.

Conclusion and Post-Tryout Tips

Volleyball tryouts allow you to demonstrate your abilities and dedication to the game. Recall that it’s still a worthwhile experience even if you are not selected for the squad. Seek out feedback and continue to practice and improve.

For those who make the team, the journey has just begun. Moreover, stay dedicated, work hard in practice, and continue to grow as a player. Additionally, learn from mistakes and challenges.

Your commitment and enthusiasm for volleyball will help you succeed on and off the court, regardless of the result. I wish you well and hope your dreams of playing volleyball become a rewarding and successful endeavor in your favorite sport.

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