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Beach Volleyball Training: How to Improve Your Performance and Fitness on the Sand.

Need a unique space for a co-worker team-building event, birthday party, wedding reception or ultra-unique fundraiser? Volleyball Beach is available during the day all week and all day and evening on Saturdays. Spring, summer, fall or winter, if you can dream it, Volleyball Beach can host it! From weddings and family reunions to charity volleyball tournaments and non-profit fundraisers, no one serves up a more fun or unique special event location than Volleyball Beach.

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We believe in a no-pressure environment at Volleyball Beach. Regardless of your skill level, we want you to find a league, team, or tournament ideal for you. Whether you are a beginner, a leisure player, or a highly competitive volleyball junkie, you will find the perfect atmosphere with us. If you are a single player looking for a team, or a team captain looking for an extra player, we are here to help.

Beach volleyball is a team sport played by two teams of two or more players on a sand court divided by a net. Similar to indoor volleyball, the objective of the game is to send the ball over the net and to ground it on the opponent's side of the court. Each team also works in unison to prevent the opposing team from grounding the ball on their side of the court.

Beach volleyball most likely originated in 1915 on Waikiki Beach in Hawaii, while the modern two-player game originated in Santa Monica, California. It has been an Olympic sport since the 1996 Summer Olympics. The Fédération Internationale de Volleyball (FIVB) is the international governing body for the sport, and organizes the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships and the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour.[3]

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Beach volleyball is a variant of indoor volleyball, which was invented in 1895 by William G. Morgan.[4] Beach volleyball most likely originated in 1915 on Waikiki Beach in Hawaii,[5] at the Outrigger Canoe Club. According to a 1978 interview with an Outrigger Canoe Club member, George David "Dad" Center put a net up there, and the first recorded game of beach volleyball took place.[6] In 1920, new jetties in Santa Monica, California created a large sandy area for public enjoyment. This planted the seed for beach volleyball development in that region. The first permanent nets began to appear, and people soon began playing recreational games on public parts of the beach and in private beach clubs. Eleven such beach clubs appeared in the Santa Monica area, beginning in late 1922. The first inter-club competitions were staged in 1924.

Most of these early beach volleyball matches were played with teams of at least six players per side, much like indoor volleyball. The concept of the modern two-man beach volleyball game is credited to Paul "Pablo" Johnson of the Santa Monica Athletic Club.[7] In the summer of 1930, while waiting for players to show up for a six-man game at the Santa Monica Athletic Club, Johnson decided to try playing with only the four people present, forming two two-man teams for the first recorded beach volleyball doubles game. The players realized that with fewer players on the court, a taller player's height advantage could be neutralized by a shorter player's speed and ball control. The popularity of the two-man game spread to other nearby beach clubs and eventually to the public courts.[7] The two-player version of the game is the most widely played version as well as the only one contested at an elite level.

Beach volleyball grew in popularity in the United States during the Great Depression in the 1930s as it was an inexpensive activity.[8] The sport also began to appear in Europe during this time.[5] By the 1940s, doubles tournaments were being played on the beaches of Santa Monica for trophies. In 1948 the first tournament to offer a prize was held in Los Angeles. It awarded the best teams with a case of Pepsi.[9] In the 1960s, an attempt to start a professional volleyball league was made in Santa Monica. It failed, but a professional tournament was held in France for 30,000 French francs.[10] In the 1950s, the first Brazilian beach volleyball tournament was held, sponsored by a newspaper publishing company.[5] The first Manhattan Beach Open was held in 1960, a tournament which grew in prestige to become, in the eyes of some, the "Wimbledon of Beach Volleyball".[11]

In the meantime, beach volleyball gained popularity: in the 1960s The Beatles tried playing in Los Angeles and US president John F. Kennedy was seen attending a match.[12] In 1974, there was an indoor tournament: "The $1500.00 World Indoor Two-Man Volleyball Championship" played in front of 4,000 volleyball enthusiast at the San Diego Sports Arena. Fred Zuelich teamed with Dennis Hare to defeat Ron Von Hagen and Matt Gage in the championship match, Winston Cigarettes was the sponsor. Dennis Hare went on to write the first book on the subject of beach volleyball: The Art of Beach Volleyball.[13]

The first professional beach volleyball tournament was the Olympia World Championship of Beach Volleyball, staged on Labor Day weekend, 1976, at Will Rogers State Beach in Pacific Palisades, California. The event was organized by David Wilk of Volleyball magazine, based in Santa Barbara. The winners, the first "world champions", were Greg Lee and Jim Menges. They split US$2,500 out of a total prize purse of US$5,000.

At the professional level, the sport remained fairly obscure until the 1980s when beach volleyball experienced a surge in popularity with high-profile players such as Sinjin Smith, Randy Stoklos, and Karch Kiraly. Kiraly won an Olympic gold medal in beach volleyball in its first Olympic appearance in 1996, adding that to the two Olympic golds he won as part of the USA men's indoor team,[15] In the 1980s, the sport gained popularity on the beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.[4] In 1986, the first international beach volleyball exhibition was held in Rio de Janeiro with 5,000 spectators.[5]

In 1987, the first international FIVB-sanctioned tournament was played on Ipanema beach in Rio de Janeiro, with a prize purse of US$22,000. It was won by Sinjin Smith and Randy Stoklos.[5] In 1989, the first FIVB-sanctioned international circuit, called the World Series, was organized with men's tournaments in Brazil, Italy and Japan.[5] The FIVB and its continental confederations began organizing worldwide professional tournaments and laid the groundwork for the sport's Olympic debut in 1996.[16] The first FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships and FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour were held the following year.[5] By 1998, the sport had been added to other multi-sport events including the Pan American Games, Central American Games, Southeast Asian Games, Goodwill Games and Universiade.[4] In 2001, the FIVB began organizing the annual FIVB Beach Volleyball U21 World Championships, with the annual FIVB Beach Volleyball U19 World Championships beginning the following year.[4]

The Fédération Internationale de Volleyball (FIVB) is the international governing body for the sport. The FIVB publishes the Official Beach Volleyball Rules every four years, as approved by the FIVB congress, which provides the framework for how beach volleyball is played internationally.[17] The rules have changed through the years: the court size became smaller, side out scoring was replaced by rally scoring and let serves were allowed. Beach volleyball differs from indoor, especially in requiring "clean hands" while setting.

Beach volleyball is played on a rectangular sand court. The court is 16 m (52.5 ft) long and 8 m (26.2 ft) wide, surrounded by a clear space, which is at least 3 m (9.8 ft) wide on all sides. The minimum height clearance for beach volleyball courts is 7 m (23.0 ft). The sand should be as leveled as possible and free of potential hazards such as rocks that could cause injuries to players.[18]

In the 2001 season, the FIVB began testing rule changes to the court size and scoring system. The beach volleyball court dimension was reduced from the indoor court size of 9 m 18 m (29.5 ft 59.1 ft) to 8 m 16 m (26.2 ft 52.5 ft), and the scoring system was changed from sideout scoring, wherein only the serving team can score a point, to rally scoring, wherein a point is scored on every serve.[19] The Association of Volleyball Professionals (AVP) adopted the FIVB's rule changes that same year, which upset many of the sport's purists at the time.[20][21] The new rules were officially adopted by the FIVB in 2002.[19]

Attack-hits using an "open-handed tip or dink" directing the ball with the fingers are illegal, as are attack-hits using an overhand pass to direct the ball on a trajectory not perpendicular to the line of the shoulders (overhand passes which accidentally cross over the net are an exception).[18] These differences between the rules of indoor volleyball and beach volleyball strongly affect tactics and techniques.

Beach volleyball players use hand signals to indicate to their partners the type of block they either intend to make (if they are the designated blocker) or that they want their partner to make (if they are the designated defender). Block signals are important so that both the blocker and defender know which area of the court is their responsibility to cover.[32] Block signals are made behind the back to hide them from the opposing team.[39] They are usually given with both hands by the serving player's partner prior to the serve, with the left hand referring to the type of block that should be put up against the left-side attacker, and the right hand similarly referring to the right-side attacker.[40] A player may also "wiggle" or "flash" one block signal to indicate which opponent to serve to.

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