Basketball and volleyball are two of the most popular sports in the world. Athletes that play either sport often wonder if there are ways to train during the offseason outside the traditional practice of lifting, cardio, and drills. One of the most stimulating ways to train for your sport during the offseason is to play another sport that shares the same skill set! In the states, the popularity and coverage of basketball is much more extensive than volleyball. Due to the difference in coverage, many Americans are surprised to hear that the two sports share many similar traits. How are basketball and volleyball alike you may ask? Lets dive into a few similarities!
1. They were first played less than 10 miles from each other
The first game of basketball was played in 1891 in Springfield, MA. The first game of volleyball was played in 1895 less than ten miles away in Holyoke, MA. Part of volleybal's creation was in response to the rising popularity of basketball. People wanted an indoor sport that did not involve as much contact as basketball.
2. Swatting vs Spiking
In basketball, one of the most electric things to witness is a devastating swat by a defender (see below for Lebron James' iconic game 7 finals block on the unfortunate Andre Iguodala).
Likewise, in volleyball everyone loves a powerful spike.
Notice any similarities in the form? I bet Lebron could send a mean spike to the defense.
3. Blocking vs Also Blocking
Blocking straight up in basketball is an effective and legal technique to stop driving attackers in their tracks. I'm going to call on Lebron once again here (even though I'm a big Celtics fan) because this is too good not to use.
In volleyball, the same form is used to stop an attacker looking to spike the ball at your team. Ideally two hands are used in either sport but hey, the similarities are too similar to pass up.
4. Defensive Stance
Defense is another focus on how basketball and volleyball are alike. For both, lateral movement and quickness are key. Ensuring a strong base and ready arms are keys to success for both!
5. Real Life Proof!
Some notable NBA players that also enjoyed playing volleyball-
-Ella Delle Donne
So if you are a basketball player looking for a fun and exciting way to train for your next season, try picking up volleyball! Who knows, maybe you'll end up liking it even more!
Wondering how to get started? Try jumping into some pickup volleyball if you are around Boston. If you are elsewhere, there are definitely places to play if you search online for your city. We would also be more than happy to speak one on one to answer and specific reservations or provide guidance to get you started, just click on the link below! Good luck, happy volleyballing!