Skip to main content

Intro to Volleyball

To All SMS parents that are interested in volleyball:

In most cases middle school volleyball is the first time your daughters are trying out for a team that they can be “cut” from, with no back-up plan or B-team available.  Our best advice is for your daughters to come to the gym with a positive attitude, a willingness to learn, be coachable, and don’t be afraid to ask questions.  It’s not how good they are today, it is about how much they learn and improve every time they are in the gym.

Every year we have 20 or more ladies tryout for each team.  Unfortunately we cannot keep 20 on each team so cuts are part of this process.  For everyone that has to go through this process, “cut day” is absolutely the worst day of the season for any middle school athlete or coach.  But no matter what happens at the end of tryouts, this season, or middle school, your daughters will always have a special place in our hearts. 

Volleyball is a communication sport.  It sounds simple but for middle school athletes it is extremely challenging.  If your daughter is not willing to say “MINE” or “BALL” to let her teammates know she is playing the ball, her time on the volleyball court will be limited.  Everyone has to communicate to win.

Volleyball Season General Overview:
IHSAA Physicals Required for Tryouts!
No Exceptions... we turn players away every year.


  • Early-July: Fall volleyball schedule will be available online.
  • Before School Begins: Open Gyms & Camps... to help the players prepare for volleyball season.

Once tryouts begin: 100% Attendance is required all season long!

1st Week of School: 8th grade tryouts
2nd Week of School: 7th grade tryouts & Mandatory Volleyball Parent Meeting
Between Tryouts and 1st Game: Practice 6 days a week for two hours, Mon-Sat.
Late-Aug -thru- Mid-Oct:  Mon-Fri = Two games per week + practice (2hrs) everyday we do not have a game.
Mid-Oct: Fun Open Gym & Awards to finish the season

What to expect at tryouts:
8th Grade: Two days (required) of drills to find the best “Team of 10-12”.
7th Grade: Three days (required).  Day-1 is teaching the game of volleyball, and then two days of drills to find the best “Team of 10-12”.

Making the team is earned:

Effort & Hussle → Paying attention, willing to learn everyday, run between drill locations, work hard.
Coachable → Listen anytime a coach is talking, ask questions, be involved.
Attitude → Be a positive, encouraging, helpful, teammate every day ON & OFF the court.
Teamwork → We are looking for the best team of 10-12.  Be encouraging and willing to play whatever role you can to contribute to the team.

Listen and learn from everyone and everything in the gym. At tryouts stay away from your friends, if you’re talking with your friends, you're not listening or learning!  Learning happens at the back and front of the line.

Any individual (no matter the skill level) that cannot get along with everyone, has a poor attitude, gives low effort, does not pay attention in the classroom or on the volleyball court, is a distraction in the classroom, or cannot fulfill the obligations of being a student-athlete will not be considered.  We are looking for the best TEAM of 10-12!

No matter what happens we highly encourage everyone to sign up for volleyball clinics, camps, and club teams to keep improving your volleyball skills.  Everyone “grows up” and becomes coordinated at different times, so keep playing volleyball!  Here is just one example... link here


Practice/Tryout Attire: School appropriate t-shirt with gym shorts or volleyball spandex.
Shoes: Any good supportive gym class appropriate athletic shoes will work.  A lot of players want volleyball specific shoes.  We would recommend those if you are planning on playing club volleyball so they can stay clean and only be worn inside the gym.
Knee Pads: Recommended, but not required.  Most players want them because hitting your knees on the floor hurts.  Black or White.
Socks: Height is totally up to the individual.  Black or White.

Game Day-Attire:

HOME Games: The ladies will be required to “Dress Up” at school.  Something nicer than what they typically wear to school.  No jeans, athletic pants, yoga pants, etc.  Must be school appropriate at all times.
AWAY Games: The ladies will be required to wear “Summit Gear”.  Typically a uniform top or team t-shirt with a nice pair of nice jeans/shorts with NO HOLES of any kind.  Nice athletic pants are accepted as long as they fit appropriately.  No Yoga Pants, No Holes!  Must be school appropriate at all times.

Volleyball Fixed Cost:

Uniforms: Following tryouts and the parent meeting we will be ordering uniforms online.  At that time each team will be ordering a long sleeve uniform, black volleyball spandex, and a team shirt.  Total Cost is typically $80 per player.
Attending HS or college volleyball games, pizza party, ice cream, meal after a Saturday tournament, awards night:  All of the things listed are about team building, bonding, and being a team of 10-12.  At the parent meeting we will ask each player to pay a set amount to cover any costs we may have.  Typically $20.  Every single penny (and more) goes back to the team.
$10 per player: SACS Transportation Fee (Checks made to Summit Middle School)