Welcome to the world of club volleyball. If you are like most parents, you're wondering what are we getting ourselves into? Well, the answer, of course, is not simple. But here are some important things to know about our program.
Season Overview - INDOOR
The club season runs from December through April. Tryouts are the first weekend in November and teams are generally formed in the week or two afterwards. In November, there are team meetings, club events, and team sessions. Clinics and conditioning will be held in December for players who are available, and practices officially start in January. From January through April, the indoor season is in full swing.
Teams practice twice per week, generally two hours per practice and usually during the weeknight evenings. Additional training (position-specific, strength & conditioning, and/or mental toughness) can add a third day per week.
Tournaments will be held approximately twice per month, and are generally all-day or even multi-day affairs. It's important to know, a tournament day is generally a full one. Teams often meet between 6:00am and 7:00am and often don't return to Marin until 6:00pm or 7:00pm.
SEASON OVERVIEW - BEACH
Starting towards the end of the season, players will attend weekend clinics to introduce the fundamental skills of beach volleyball. In April, in addition to the indoor practices and tournaments, teams will train once per week on the sand and have at least one weekend beach event. In May, all teams will fully transition to the beach and will play at least twice per week, including tournaments on weekends.
How is the club season different than CYO or School?
Generally, a player and family's first exposure to volleyball is through school or CYO. As the season goes on and a players love for the sport grows, inevitably the idea of playing club volleyball comes up. School and CYO seasons generally run August through October, and club volleyball provides opportunities to essentially provide year-round volleyball.
Club Volleyball is significantly more expensive than school or CYO teams. We expect the total cost for a club season to approach $3,000-$4,000 after registration fees, club dues, equipment and travel.
Club volleyball is an entirely different (and much more significant) commitment than CYO. Besides the increased expense, it requires a high degree of time and emotional commitment by both the player and family. The season is much longer, practices are more intense, and tournaments often involve travel and a full-day commitment (a typical tournament day consists of anywhere from 4-6 matches, and can last as long as 10 hours).
Marin Juniors is a competitive program designed for players who are serious about improving their game, and we are committed to developing the best teams possible. We expect players to be at as many practices and tournaments as possible. While we don't expect families' lives to completely revolve around volleyball, we do expect it to be a high priority. Our general guideline is that if players are going to miss more than one practice per month or more than one tournament during the season, a conversation with the coach and club director needs to be had before making a commitment to one of our teams.
With CYO, teams are generally coached by parents of players on the team with varying levels of experience with the sport. Taking nothing away from some of the truly exceptional coaches in the CYO programs, the coaching staff at Marin Juniors are professionals with years of experience at the club, high school and college level.
The average head coach will average over 15 years of coaching experience. We have watched players play through all age groups and have developed techniques and processes to maximize team and individual development. Each team will have a dedicated assistant coach (or coaches) and for the younger teams we may include additional coaches.
In Marin, the level of CYO volleyball has improved tremendously. However, the level of competition intensifies as we are competing with teams all over Northern California. It is amazing to see what the top players are capable of, and we believe it is this exposure to higher levels of play that inspire players and teams to believe that more is possible. For younger players, opportunities to share gyms with more experienced and advanced players is priceless.
Marin Juniors offers comprehensive training unlikely to be found at any club, CYO or school program. Combining indoor and outdoor training and competition with expertise in movement training, nutrition and sports psychology creates a development experience like no other.