Volleyball England has launched a new campaign Women in Volleyball. The campaign was released along with the return of Sport England’s This Girl Can Campaign. The campaign supposes to attract more women to sport and help them to “overcome the fear of judgment that is stopping them from joining in”. Personally, I am surprised and sad at the same time that such a campaign needs to exist. I am originally from the Czech Republic where sport is a big part of our culture and girls like to to be active. In the series My Journey to Volleyball Coaching, I will describe my sports development including volleyball and what led me to coach it.
My Sport Development
The first sport I have actively done was swimming. Czech children start attending swimming lessons from a very young age and continue throughout their primary school attendance. I enjoyed swimming so much that when I was about 8 years old I have signed up for a local club for extra evening lessons. I have attended those sessions with my close friend and brother but managed to stay just for about two years. However, I have stayed passionate about swimming and I was representing my primary school in the regional competitions every year till I was 15 years old.
My primary school is based in the region of sport and close to the Jizera Mountains (yes, you wonder right, my surname is very local 🙂 ) for a long time focused on the development of cross-country skiers. When I joined, there were no longer any specific classes focused on that sport, but we had great PE teachers.
We were doing lots of fundamental skills focused on agility and body coordination, from gymnastics, athletics to throwing and catching a ball between age 7 -10. We loved playing dodge ball and even more when it was competitive. Our class was made of from very strong girls that were active and loved to challenge boys in this game. We would play girls versus boys games, and you would be probably surprised but we managed to beat them many times.
When I was about 11 years old my classmate came to me and asked me if I would like to join her and my other two classmates for volleyball lessons. It is very popular to have after school activities in the Czech Republic and as I have not attended anything that time and I loved being active and around my friends, I gave it a go. I stayed with this sport till now. You will find out more about my volleyball development and the organisation of this beautiful sport in the Czech Republic in part 2 of this series.
When we got older at school, we have started playing many team sports basketball, floorball (which is also very popular among girls in the Czech Republic), softball and spend time skiing and biking. I and my best (volleyball) friends were representing schools in different sports. The most interesting discipline that I have ever represented my school at was pole climbing ” which is a very popular gymnastic asset at the Czech schools. As you can see, Czech schools focus on a variety of sports and development of the young kids. PE is one of the most popular subjects at the Czech schools and kids usually looking forward to it.
Do not forget to comment on how did your volleyball journey started and what other sports were you doing as a child/teenager?
Please also read part 2 of My Volleyball Journey...it is coming soon!