It’s that period of year again, with fall events, pumpkins, and the leaves changing color. For beach volleyball coaches and players, it’s a difficult time. We may enjoy a few more days on the sand, but we know it’s coming to a close, and the sand will soon be covered in snow.
This does not imply we should stop beach training; rather, we must find a strategy to stay in beach form during the winter months. Everyone understands that exercising in the heat demands additional hydration and sunscreen. But what about when it’s cold outside? What extra precautions should we take to ensure our safety and to decrease the risk of injuries?
If you are not bothered by the cold sand and weather, you can still train outside and make the best of the cold season by paying attention to these few guidelines:
Not all volleyball balls are the same. The ball will be constructed differently based on whether you’re playing indoors or on the sand, and the stitching will reflect the need for sand to remain out of the ball in beach volleyball balls or carry further in the air. Not all balls are made equal, so you’ll have to experiment to see which ones perform best with your strategy. Knowing the type of ball used in the arena where you will be playing is beneficial so you can practice with it on your own.
Ensure you do have nice pair of sand socks on hand. If you don’t want to bother with volleyball sand socks, invest in a pair of wetsuit footwear. They should be 5mm thick, not 3, and you may wear a pair of wooly socks inside on particularly frigid days! It’s time to put your shoes on, put your knee pads on, grab your outdoor volleyball ball and get out there. When talent does not work hard, hard effort prevails.
Dry and warm clothes.
Take a good pair of gloves in between training (I don’t enjoy wearing them during training), and have a reusable hand warmer with you for emergencies and rests. Wearing warm, sustainable sneakers is another great solution to keeping fit.
Keep in mind you bring some warm, dry clothing to put on afterward, and consider changing out of soaked clothing as soon as you finish playing. The risk is that your muscles will become cold if you do not dress warmly enough. This can result in severe and unpleasant injuries that can wreck a season, if not a career, in sports.
Carry a warm beverage in a flask or keep a cup on hand in case you need it. After a cold training, delicious hot tea is a fantastic treat. Skip the sugar, this time. However, don’t forget to drink enough water. Many people relate hydration to the summertime, but dehydration may occur in the winter as well. In fact, rapid dehydration affects an increasing number of people.
Simulate a beach game indoors.
You should also prepare for the time when the weather conditions are not great for playing outdoors. Try to simulate a beach volleyball game indoors, and try to make it fun by developing a unique set of competitive workouts which can help any team gain energy and life.
There should never be excuses for anyone to get out there and rock it this winter. Your training shouldn’t stop no matter what.