By: Amy Yao
Playing volleyball can significantly improve your health and quality of life in many areas both physically and mentally. Volleyball is a great way to stay healthy and fit and stay involved in social activities. Playing volleyball enhances energy levels, reduces stress, develops self confidence and improves your overall performance in daily life.
One of the primary reasons volleyball is a perfect way to be active is because of the amount of calories and fat your body burns while toning the body. According to Harvard Medical School, a person can burn between 90-133 calories during a half hour game of non-competitive, non-beach volleyball, while a competitive gym game of volleyball burns between 120 to 178 calories. An hour-long game of volleyball on the sand can burn up to 480 calories. The physical activities involved in playing volleyball build muscle in the upper body such as arms and shoulders as well as muscles of the lower body such as thighs and lower legs.
Playing volleyball also tones and strengthens the cardiovascular and respiratory systems. By getting your heart rate up, your body will circulate more blood, oxygen and nutrients throughout the body improving your overall well-being. Volleyball requires a strong use of chest and core muscles for nearly every play. To pass a volleyball, you use your legs to generate power. To set a volleyball, you must use arms, legs and especially thighs. When you strike, you use thigh, chest, arm, and shoulder muscles. When the ball is coming fast towards you, you need to use a substantial amount of leg power to support yourself as you push the ball up. Your hands must be strong to prevent injury.
Volleyball improves hand-eye coordination, agility, speed, and balance. When serving the ball, you must follow it with your eyes and strike the ball at the right point. While playing defense, you must find where the ball is going and get in position to make a play. When you set the ball, you use hand-eye coordination to correctly set to your hitters. During a game of volleyball, you must change pace and direction quickly. These technical skills require flexibility, good balance, upper and lower body strength, and speed to play adequately.
Playing volleyball requires cooperation within teams. Leadership and cooperation are important traits that lead to the success of a team. Handling wins and losses correctly build team spirit and develop better social skills. During a game of volleyball, you must “call” the ball. You are always talking to your teammates about what is going to happen, such as “free ball”, “out”, and “tip”. Talking within the team while playing establishes critical social characteristics by working as a team.
Overall, volleyball is a fantastic way to boost your mood, reduce stress, and be proud of accomplishments as a team. This sport enhances self confidence, self esteem, body image, and makes you feel happier about life in general. Volleyball can also increase motivation and the drive to succeed. As a team member, it is important to encourage your team and give everyone confidence to thrive and achieve the skills to win.