Is Volleyball Hard? Reasons You Must Know

Micah Drews


You might wonder why volleyball can be so frustratingly difficult at times if you are new to it…

It’s one thing to understand the rules, rotations, and positions… it’s another to actually get the ball back over the net.

There are several unusual physical attributes required to master volleyball, making it a particularly challenging sport for beginners.

I’m going to share with you specifically why I think volleyball is a really difficult sport since I started out as a frustrated beginner and ended up playing at an international level.

In any case, if reading this article discourages you from playing volleyball, you probably weren’t cut out for it anyway!

Why Volleyball is a hard sport

Is Volleyball Hard

Volleyball requires quick thinking, which is one of the key elements. It is for this reason that it is truly a hard sport.

Thinking quickly is something you need to learn. It is very important that you can figure out what to do within a very short period of time. The action barely stops during volleyball games due to its fast pace. To keep the ball in play, you need to respond as quickly as possible.

Here are 5 of the main ones…

Getting better makes it harder

Once you master the basic skills, the game only gets harder.

In the same way that you are learning how to spike the ball, your opponent is learning how to block.

The opposition is learning how to jump serve as you’re finally learning how to pass the ball.

With your growth, you begin to play against opponents who are much taller.

When I first started playing volleyball, it was probably the easiest I’ve ever had.

Your height handicaps you

The shortest player on the junior national team, excluding the liberos, is me at 6’5″ or 196cm.

Even though there were three of us with the same height…

Adding insult to injury, I was told I wasn’t tall enough to progress in the sport…

I had to make drastic changes to my game in order to compete at the senior men’s level since I was a middle blocker and 196cm simply wouldn’t cut it.

Although you can be a successful volleyballer without being insanely tall, it will be much harder.

If you’re on the short side and want to play professionally, you should consider becoming a libero!

Physical specimens are all the top players

I find it hard to comprehend just how big these athletes can get.

World’s tallest sport is volleyball.

A tall athlete is different from just being tall.

When you see these guys in person, they appear a whole lot bigger and thicker than they look on TV.

A mere mortal cannot match the muscle mass, jump ability, and hitting power of an athlete.

You’ll need to be an athlete if you want to make it to the top as anything other than a libero!

For beginners, it’s really hard to learn the basics

Performing the basic skills is technically challenging, which is why volleyball is hard.

It’s a steep learning curve at first.

In a moment, I’ll get into more detail on this one.

Ball moves too fast

Especially at the senior men’s level, this is frustrating.

A ball is crushed at over 100mph by these guys.

Over 150 feet per second is the speed of a volleyball…

You simply won’t be able to react in time if the ball passes the block as a backcourt defender.

It’s extremely frustrating when you have to keep the ball off the ground, yet you don’t even know where it’s going!

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Is Volleyball Hard On Your Body?

Is Volleyball Hard

In all honesty, yes and no.

Despite the fact that it is a non-contact sport, I say no. Playing volleyball isn’t exactly likely to cause chronic traumatic brain injury…

As far as joint pain is concerned, I say yes.

Knee injuries are particularly common in volleyball

It won’t take long for your knees to turn to dust after all the jumping you do.

All 8 athletes in my full-time volleyball training program from the ages of 15-17 had knee problems.

There was a lot of patella tendinitis (jumper’s knee) reported. I think one guy had bursitis and a few of us had meniscus tears.

The jumping and landing caused us all to have inflamed knees.

The shoulder is also prone to issues

You are putting a lot of strain on your shoulder joint when you spike a volleyball.

There isn’t a volleyball player in their career who hasn’t had a shoulder issue at some point!

Wearing ankle guards has a purpose

Spikes and blocks often land right around the net where there are many feet when you land from them.

Ankle injuries result from landing awkwardly on someone’s foot.

My right ankle has scar tissue after 10 years of basketball and 15 years of volleyball!

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What Is The Hardest Volleyball Position?

Is Volleyball Hard

In volleyball, there isn’t much debate about which position is the hardest.

As the setter, you shoulder far more responsibility than any other player on the court due to your central role in every play.

Teamwork depends on the setter.

By delivering the ball to the correct hitting window, they allow an attacker to score.

It is common for the setter to take the blame for things going wrong.

Is Volleyball Hard To Learn?

Beginners find volleyball extremely challenging due to how foreign the passing, setting, and hitting movements are.

You are probably miles away from being able to spike properly when you are new to the sport. You don’t know how to make a passing platform, you don’t know how to set.

In my opinion, the worst thing about tennis is not having an intuitive sense of where you should go on the court or which balls you should aim for.

In order to learn volleyball, you need a lot of time.

Watching junior level volleyball is so frustrating for me!

The whole game is just error after error on repeat: it’s like playing low level tennis.

Coaches of grade 8 volleyball deserve my hats for their courage and patience!

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Is Beach Volleyball Harder Than Indoor?

Is Volleyball Hard

There is no comparison between indoor volleyball and beach volleyball in terms of difficulty.

The following are 8 reasons why beach volleyball is harder than indoor volleyball.

There is only one other player on your team

It’s still a fairly big court, so you’ll have to be more accurate.

Sand is the only thing you can move on

Running and jumping on sand are both difficult.

Making a living from it is much harder

As a beach volleyball player, I found it difficult to earn a living.

There are no substitutions

You’re the only one on the court with your partner. You will lose your tournament if they are injured.

You Don’t Get A Coach

In tournaments, you and your partner are the only players. Playing requires you to figure things out for yourself.

It Can Get Really Hot!

Several players suffered from heat stroke during beach tournaments in Australia.

It can get really hot in the sand!

On a really nasty day, your feet can get first degree burns not just from the sun, but also from the sand.

On more than one occasion, sand socks have saved my life!

There will be sand everywhere

All over the place. The frustration level increases after a while!

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How Hard Is It To Make A Volleyball Team?

Is Volleyball Hard

How much experience you have, what position you play, and what team you’re trying out for will all factor into this one.

Is It Hard To Make The Freshman Volleyball Team?

Your school’s volleyball program will determine the answer to this question.

There are some schools that will take just about anyone due to low interest, and there are some freshman classes with multiple teams that already have some experience.

Regardless of your experience level, you should definitely give it a shot!

Is It Hard To Get A Volleyball Scholarship?

Several excellent data points shed some light on this topic.

College volleyball is played by approximately 5.7% of high school volleyball players in the USA.

In volleyball, about 1% of players will receive a scholarship to a division 1 college.

Nevertheless, international talent isn’t taken into account in those numbers.

In reality, competition may be a little tougher now that athletes from around the world are competing for NCAA sporting scholarships.

How Hard Is It To Make A Club Volleyball Team?

With a little interest in the sport and ideally some experience, you shouldn’t have too much trouble joining a club volleyball team.

In most clubs, there are multiple teams for each age group that cater to different skill levels.

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Is Volleyball Hard To Master?

Is Volleyball Hard

A former coach of my national team once told me that spiking a volleyball is the hardest skill in any sport.

Certainly it seems that way sometimes, but I don’t think it’s true.

Volleyball becomes tougher as you get better, as I mentioned earlier.

It’s getting harder to pass

When you first begin playing, passing is very different…

You’re now facing a 25 meter per second jump serve.

In case you were wondering, the volleyball court measures 18 meters long.

The ball is spinning and curving away from you, so you have less than a second to pass it.

It gets harder to hit

At the highest level, spikes are incredibly difficult to master.

The ball must be killed around a triple block with 200cm tall defenders!

To prevent the block from gaining position, you should also run your attacks extremely quickly.

As a novice, I struggled the most with timing fast-paced outside attacks – you’re literally starting to jump before the setter has even touched the ball!

Both serving and defending become harder

Even the best players in the world still make errors in serving, an aspect we won’t be able to master…

It is hard enough to get the ball toss in the right spot consistently, let alone perfect the timing and contact with the ball.

In the highest levels of competition, the job of the defender is nearly impossible.

Most people cannot comprehend how long it takes to react to a hard hit ball.

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Are you still interested in playing volleyball?

You’re probably a good candidate to pursue the sport seriously if after reading all that you only feel more excited to play!

Volleyball is still a great, social game, even if you have no aspirations to play at the highest levels.


Is volleyball harder than basketball?

My experience playing basketball and volleyball for more than ten years makes me qualified to answer this question.
Since basketball is physically demanding, I think it is probably slightly harder than football. Comparatively to volleyball, it’s a very contact sport, and running up and down the court continuously requires extreme physical fitness.
I would argue that the skill of spiking a volleyball is quite similar to shooting a 3. I don’t think it’s fair to say that one is easier than the other, as both require a lot of repetitions and years of hard work.
Generally, I would say basketball is more difficult than football.

How can I improve my volleyball skills quickly?

It is possible to improve volleyball skills quickly by practicing consistently, focusing on fundamental skills, and seeking feedback from experienced players or coaches.

How many days does it take to learn volleyball?

Trying to learn volleyball in just a few days is ridiculous!
I think you’d have a pretty good grasp of the game’s rules after playing for 3-4 days straight, but you’re looking at 3-4 years before you’re any good at it!

Is volleyball only for tall people?

The right skills and techniques can enable players of all sizes to excel in volleyball, regardless of their height.

Is volleyball a safe sport to play?

The risk of injury in volleyball is similar to any other sport, but it can be minimized with the right training, equipment, and adherence to the rules.

Can anyone play volleyball, or is it only for athletes?

Whether you are a recreational player or a competitive athlete, volleyball is a versatile sport that suits all ages and fitness levels.

What are some strategies for overcoming nerves before a volleyball game?

Volleyball players can boost their confidence and calm nerves before matches by deep breathing, visualizing, and talking positively to themselves.


A combination of physical and mental challenges makes volleyball one of the most demanding sports. Mastering the game requires dedication and skill development, but the reward is well worth the effort.

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About Micah Drews

After playing volleyball at an international level for several years, I now work out and write for Volleyball Blaze. Creating unique and insightful perspectives through my experience and knowledge is one of my top priorities.

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