This past week, July 18-21, I had the opportunity to work with a variety of talented high schoolers at our high school camp 9 to noon. Each day we introduced different skills sets by first demonstrating them and then split off onto five different courts allowing each player to practice what they had just learned/seen. On my court, I only had 8 players which allowed me a great deal of time to work one on one with each player.
The first day we started off simple with, over head passing, forearm passing and serving. We go through and show them different warm up drills that we do in our own practices and then let them do it. I think it’s cool that they do the same drills at the camp as we do ourselves. It shows that the campers have the ability to become better players and potentially move onto the next level. While majority of the campers have the skill sets to over head pass and forearm pass, we went over the different types of serves (top spin, float, and jump). I think most of them had never attempted to jump serve before. The camp was the perfect opportunity to try new things and that way they could ask for all the help they need.
The second day we worked on hitting, blocking, and defense. On this day we mainly work on hitting from the outside position and really work on getting all of the right footwork and arm swings down. For blocking we worked on it from the entire front row. We worked on the pin blockers setting the block and the middle blocker getting all the way there to close the block. For defense we did a majority of drills that had to do with digging hits, tips and roll shots, all different types of attacking methods. Again, all the drills we did were all drills we do in our everyday practices during season.
For the third and last day, we incorporated more specialized hitting like right side slides and quicks. (Quicks are a fast set where the hitter needs to get in really fast.) Mainly we did a lot of competitive drills and play. For the last day we did different drills where the campers played 6 on 6 because they had already learned all of the essential skills need to have efficient playing time. I enjoyed being involved on the side lines. I would really try to correct and help a camper understand what happened when they made an error. Often times when you’re putting all the different skills together in one drill, its hard to remember all the little things needed to execute.
One of the important skills that we went over that is often not introduced until you’re at the collegiate level is eye work. Before entering college volleyball, I didn’t really understand what I was supposed to watch during the game. We introduced different things you’re supposed to watch during the game to help better you as a player, making you faster and smarter. Also, we showed them a variety of ways to help train your eyes and make them stronger and sharper. Again, more drills that we do in our practices during season.
Overall, I had a lot of fun working the camp. It was fun to be with players that have so much potential and watching them grow in just a short few days. I love any opportunity I get to help out and with this it was all about volleyball, my two favorite things! Working this camp got me really excited for our season to start. I cannot wait to start practicing everyday and seeing all of the exciting new talent we have this year. GO Cougars!
~ Brooke Jacobs