Recreational and school volleyball for young girls and young women is relatively inexpensive, but for some families (particularly those of color in inner cities) even a nominal fee can be a struggle. These fees are charged by the season – generally 6-8 weeks long. If your daughter expresses interest in playing volleyball and the fee is an issue, check to see if there are teams or leagues at local churches in your area. If recreation centers like Boys and Girls Clubs and YMCAs are your only options, consider talking to the club director about scholarship opportunities and financial assistance.
Club or travel volleyball is whole different beast, as you can probably tell. Cost will vary depending on a number of factors (see Club Volleyball) and if your family can afford the investment, consider yourselves very fortunate.
Club volleyball has much higher competition. If your daughter has played recreational and even school volleyball for a number of years and is looking for more of a challenge, do some research on the clubs in your city or town – here are a couple of websites you can use to narrow down your search:
Consider talking to your daughter’s coaches about the transition to competitive club volleyball first. This is a significant investment in money and TIME; you should get feedback that your daughter has the experience, skill and dedication to handle this level of competition before you consider club or travel volleyball.
Many folks may not have $500-$8000 to invest in something like this. If this is your situation, you are not alone. Here are a few ideas for you to consider:
- Family members sponsorship: great option, especially if your daughter might consider a college scholarship later down the line. The more investors the cheaper it will be for everyone.
- Club scholarships: Research clubs that offer scholarships based on need. In some instances, you may be required to be a current or previous player of the club.
- Practice only option: Many clubs offer players an opportunity to work out and practice with a club team to build their skills. This option is significantly cheaper.
If travel and hotel accommodations aren’t included in the club fees, there are often ways to reduce those expenses as well. Many clubs organize fundraisers to off-set some of the costs. After some time, you become good friends with parents of other players on the team — consider carpooling and room-sharing as well.