While participating in one of the school’s several fall sports, the girls on the varsity volleyball team are learning important life skills. Student athletes must be able to balance their athletics with their academics and work together with their teammates to bring home a victory.
It is important to be able to get along with others in both sports and everyday life, although the girls on the team have already bonded. Working together, they are able to quickly set up for after-school drills and get the chance to improve their team skills during both practices and games. They must be able to communicate and get along well with the different people on the team in order to act as a unit on the volleyball court. “You learn how to balance leadership and also learn how to follow people’s example, as well,” senior and team captain Leonie Alder said.
While on the team, athletes also get the opportunity to develop their time-management skills. Practices can run late, and games can take up lots of time on school nights, so getting work done on time can be a challenge for students on the school’s many sports teams. “You definitely have to put aside time for schoolwork because it’s very time-consuming,” junior hitter Gina DeLancey said. “Especially if you play year-round, you have to be really dedicated and sometimes give up hanging out with your friends to do homework.”
Taking part in volleyball or other sports in high school can also help to teach students positive thinking. Going into a game with a negative attitude can poorly impact the outcome of the game. “If your head isn’t in the right place, like if you think you’re going to lose, you probably will lose,” sophomore defensive specialist Sophie Gajadhar-Smith said. “You have to have confidence to be able to play volleyball, no matter how good of a player you are naturally.”
Many of the lessons learned are taught to the varsity volleyball players are courtesy of their coaches, head coach Ms. Aubrey Mosley and assistant coach Ms. Kyle Petty. “I’ve learned how to listen from my coaches, particularly how to listen about what they say,” senior hitter Genevieve Bernard said. “They’re so good, they’re so experienced, and they have so much dedication to throw out to their players.”
Playing volleyball at the varsity level allows student athletes to expand their horizons and form friendships with their teammates. Participating in a team sport also provides them with new and exciting high school experiences, such as playing in games. “It gives me something to do, something to look forward to and it’s fun,” Gajadhar-Smith said. “It’s good to have a routine.”