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Rally Together with Mental Training Ideas & Exercises

Over the past couple of months, many at home training opportunities have been shared across social media and the web relating to both physical conditioning and volleyball skills.  Perhaps the most important aspect of our athlete's welfare at a time like this, however, is their mental well being.  As coaches, parents, and club directors, the mental health of our players is something we simply cannot overlook and then "hope" for good results.  We need to educate ourselves and then provide practical tools to those in our circle of influence.  Fortunately, there are multiple opportunities and practical tools provided to us - we just have to look and then actually spur ourselves into action.  Here are a few to get you started: 

  • AVCA Educational Timeout Webinars: These webinars feature industry experts and tackle topics to help us navigate our current situation including these: 
    • The Coaches Compass to Covid-19: How to Engage and Lead the Most Anxious Generation of Athletes So That They Flourish, Not Flounder During This Global Pandemic (Dr. Tim Elmore, Growing Leaders Founder and CEO)
    • Current Engagement Strategies to Enhance Team Culture and Connection (University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Coaching Staff)
    • Change, Keeping Together & What Now for Coaches (Bo Hanson, Athlete Assessments)
    • Why Do They Fall Apart?  Coaching to Enhance Mental Toughness (Dr. V J Iannone, Sports Psychologist)
  • Creating Mental Cue Card Video Series: A series of short videos walking you and your players through creating a mental cue card, a proven and practical tool adapted from Joshua Medcalf (mental training coach for UCLA women's basketball) for players to use as they prepare for matches.  Definitely worth checking out!
  • Tools & Worksheets for Athletes Focusing on Mental Health: Valley City State University Head Coach, Brigitte Greywater, and her staff has put together TEN helpful ideas and useful worksheets for you to pass on to your players to help them identify their current mental state and then create a strategy to improve their mental health.  You will want to take a look at these!
#RallyTogether #BetterTogether


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Volleyball, The Unknown and Mental Health
Brigitte Greywater
April 21, 2020
Valley City State University
Head Volleyball Coach

As I write to you today, recognize I have been serving in a counselor role for the past eight years as well as head college volleyball coach. I just recently had the opportunity to change direction a little bit to only serve as a head college volleyball coach. That being said, mental health is important, and we should never “push it aside”.

Mental health should always be a priority; however, without our outlet of volleyball it may be haunting us more than ever. Volleyball is our positive coping mechanism. Volleyball was there on the bad days to distract us from emotional pain. And now, we were forced to take a break. It is not gone forever, but we need to figure out what we are going to do without it for awhil…