Volleyball Training

England Indoor Performance Director’s Log – June 2024

England Indoor Performance Director’s Log – June 2024

This is the first of my periodic updates in my role as Indoor Performance Director for Volleyball England. I laid out the high level priorities under which I’m operating in my initial post.

We’ve had three major activities since I introduced this journal in mid-March.

Easter camp

Over Easter weekend we had U18 and U20 men’s and women’s groups. The U20s were there for two days, while the U18s each did two days. This isn’t how we plan to do camps generally, but we needed to do more talent ID with the younger kids than for the older ones. That required larger cohorts for those younger age groups. Thus the shorter camp for them.

We went Friday to Monday. Because our agreement for the National Volleyball Centre (NVC) basically limits us to about 8 hour days on weekdays (no real limit on the weekend), we had each group do a 90 minute morning court session, then 2 hours in the afternoon. During part of their off-court time each group did some kind of informational or developmental session, though we made sure to allow for true down time for recovery.

My big priorities for the camp were to start moving the ENG programs toward more of a performance focus and to ensure every player there (and their club coaches) received useful feedback. The latter is pretty self-explanatory (though it was something seen as lacking previously). Let me explain the first part.

For the last number of years the age group England camps were weekend affairs most months throughout the year. The major focus was often on skill development. My attitude – and the coaching staff largely agrees – is that we simply don’t get enough contact time with the players to expect the national team environment to be the main source of skill development. That has to come from the clubs, which see the kids a lot more than we do (which is why coach development is such a big focus). We, instead, should focus on performance. After all, we field teams in international competition where it’s all about performance.

Of course you can’t just flip a switch on something like that. It will take time to really set hold. Easter camp was a reasonable start, though. We filed away a fair bit of feedback and thoughts to use moving forward.

August camp selection

Coming out of Easter camp, we fairly quickly turned our attention to our next camp near the end of August. The August camp is one where the main focus will be selection of U17 and U19 teams for the October NEVZA…

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