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How to Stand Out at Volleyball Tryouts

Tryouts can be intimidating; you’re clumped in a group with other athletes and asked to show off your talent. The pressure is on and a spot on the team is on the line. Half the battle is standing out from the rest of the crowd. Here is a list of five non-skill-related things you can do to help standout at an upcoming tryout.

1.  Arrive Early

Showing up late for a tryout is a surefire way to get noticed, but it’s not the kind of attention you want. Plan to arrive at least 15 minutes before registration begins. Besides revealing your maturity level and character, arriving early allows to you to begin warming up and focusing on doing your best.

There’s an old saying that goes, “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.” Well, the importance of the all mighty first impression certainly rings true, especially at an environment such as a tryout,

With the large number of athletes and a limited time frame, warm-ups are often kept to a minimum. However, it has been scientifically documented that you are more likely to perform at your peak when your muscles are warm. So give yourself the best chance of making the team and get to the gym early!

2. Greet and Smile

Since you’re going to be at the gym with a few minutes to spare, take advantage of the time by introducing yourself to the coach of the team. Don’t forget to smile when you introduce yourself and let the coach know a little bit about your volleyball background. Tell the coach which position(s) you play and how long you’ve been playing. Remember, your goal is to briefly introduce yourself, so keep your conversation to an appropriate length.

3. Think in color

On the morning of the tryout, you may ask yourself if what you wear will make you stand out from the crowd. Well, yes it will, and for obvious reasons. Wearing a bright colored t-shirt or outfit will definitely make you stand out in sea of gray, white and other dull colors. Marketing agencies have been studying color meanings for years and it’s time to put the research to use. Just for fun, here is a brief breakdown of the aforementioned research:

  • Gray or silver: can be associated with conservative qualities and considered traditional. Conservative is not how you want to be characterized at a tryout. So if possible, keep that gray t-shirt in the closet on tryout day.
  • Gold: suggests wealth. It’s considered to be very classy
  • Blue: inspires confidence. It is the most popular and second most powerful color. Darker shades are authoritative, while paler shades can imply weakness. Confidence and power are definitely qualities you want to convey during a tryout, so blue could be a great wardrobe choice.
  • Red: commands attention, alerts us and creates a sense of urgency. It symbolizes heat, fire, power, excitement, energy, strength and aggressiveness. If you’re feeling like you might need an energy boost on the morning of tryouts, a red t-shirt could be the way to go.
  • Yellow: is the sunshine hue and is often used to highlight or draw attention, which is your primary goal at a tryout. However, bright yellow can be irritable to the eye in large quantities, so weigh your options before you slip on the yellow armor.
  • Green: is a calming, refreshing color that is very easy on the eyes. Because green suggests freedom, healing and tranquility, it might be a good idea to avoid this color on tryout day.
  • Brown: is associated with nature and the earth. Brown suggests richness, politeness, helpfulness and effectiveness. It is solid, credible, mature and reliable. However, brown just doesn’t jump out at you in a crowd.
  • Orange: is associated with vibrancy as well as warmth and contentment. It can instill a sense of fun and excitement. It implies health and suggests pleasure, cheer, endurance, generosity and ambition. Adding a little bit of orange to your tryout ensemble could give you that extra pick-me-up.
  • Pink: is considered to be a very feminine color. It represents gentleness, romance, well being and innocence. Paler shades of pink are probably too gentle for a rambunctious environment like tryouts, but neon shades could really catch a coach’s eye.
  • Purple: represents royalty and luxury. So add some purple to your wardrobe and show the coach who the king/queen of the court really is.

4. Hustle

Coaches always appreciate an athlete who hustles to and from drills. It shows coaches that you know that their time is precious and that you are serious about making a team. Jogging back from a water break doesn’t take much more effort than walking would, so why not give it a try? Besides, making your way to the coach in a timely manner will ensure that you have an optimal spot for listening to directions.

5. Talk it Up

Coaches don’t notice quiet players, so don’t let yourself fall into that category. Being loud on the court and calling for the ball doesn’t require extra time in the gym, but it will make an immediate positive impact. Talking not only makes you better, but also makes your team better, and coaches are always looking for athletes who are able to raise the level of play of their peers.

Talking isn’t limited to calling for the ball and calling for your set. Talking can also include cheering for fellow players while you are off the court or giving people encouragement throughout drills. Making an effort to do these kinds of things will show coaches that you are a leader and a team player.

Give it Your Best Shot!

While the tips above are not a guarantee to get you that coveted spot on the team, they sure can help you get noticed. And since coaches probably won’t select you for their team if you don’t catch their eye, standing out among dozens of other prospects is often half the battle. Once you get a coach’s attention you can let your volleyball skills do the rest!

Volleyball try outs can be nerve-wracking. This guide explains what most volleyball coaches look for, and provides tips on how to make yourself stand out from the crowd.
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