If your daughter played recreational (or club/travel) volleyball at a younger age, she may consider playing for a middle school or high school team. During this time, all coaches (school, rec and club) will increase the focus on development – working on the mechanics of setting, passing and hitting as well as rotations and player positions (i.e. setter, outside hitter, opposite hitter, defensive specialist, etc.) Factors like height, vertical reach, speed and agility may come into play and girls interested in playing at the college level may begin settling into a position they want to make their “specialty”.
And speaking of college – Is travel or club volleyball really necessary if my daughter already plays for her school team?
Many college recruiters suggest that volleyball players progress to club or travel volleyball if they have any interest in playing at the college level. Even at NCAA Division I schools, most volleyball programs do not have the same resources the football and basketball programs have; staff is limited, so coaches visit junior-level tournaments (sponsored by USAV, AAU Volleyball, etc.) to see many potential recruits in one location. This is where club or travel volleyball offers some advantages over recreational or even high school volleyball.
The college volleyball season is also during the same time as the high school season so it’s rare that a college volleyball coach will be able to visit a player during a high school game. In addition to the exposure, players maintain physical conditioning and continue to develop – more often than not – when they play club volleyball in the off-season.