In this coaching log entry I talked about how my Svedala team did at Gran Prix in 2016. What I didn’t really talk about was some of what went on through the course of things when we weren’t on the court. Of course, as is always the case for tournaments like that, there were a number of side discussions with other coaches in attendance. All were interesting and engaging, as they tend to be.

One person I spoke with at a couple of different points was Volleyball Coaching Wizard Ismo Peltoarvo. At that time he was recently was named the Swedish Women’s National Team coach and was on-hand mainly in that capacity. After our match on Saturday, Ismo told me he really liked one of our Americans. She’s probably the league’s best all-around player in her position, so it’s easy to see why he’d say that.

When we were heading out to dinner that night I mentioned Ismo’s comments to the player in question, jokingly asking if she’d be interested in playing for the Sweden. That got her attention. She started asking our manager about what it would take to become a Swedish citizen.

Of course he joked the easiest way was to marry a Swede.

Without missing a beat, she asked if we knew of any eligible guys.

I mentioned the conversation to Ismo the next morning at breakfast. He smiled and said he’d take her in the team. 🙂

Oh, and it was COLD in Uppsala, where they held the event. The temperature when we went out for dinner on Saturday night was close to 0 Fahrenheit (about -17C). It snowed on and off most of the weekend, though got a bit warmer on Sunday.

You can see the official tournament articles and videos at and/or on the Swedish Volleyball Facebook page.

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John Forman
John Forman

John is currently the Talent Strategy Manager (oversees the national teams) and Indoor Performance Director for Volleyball England, as well as Global Director for Volleyball for Nation Academy. His volleyball coaching experience includes all three NCAA divisions, plus Junior College, in the US; university and club teams in the UK; professional coaching in Sweden; and both coaching and club management at the Juniors level. He's also been a visiting coach at national team, professional club, and juniors programs in several countries. Learn more on his bio page.

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