The idea of stations is a pretty straight-forward one. Players are divided up into groups and assigned to separate areas at which they do something. We see these sorts of arrangement used most often to cycle players through a series of exercises. For example, there can be stations set up to do strength & conditioning exercises, or where players work on the different volleyball skills.
When I’ve coached college volleyball in the States we’ve used stations regularly to break players into different groups – usually by positions – to work with them in a more focused fashion. I saw the same thing when I visited college training sessions back in August 2013. No doubt it is quite prevalent.
Of course the schools I’m talking about here had multiple courts on which to work. Not everyone has the sort of space available – including me with the university teams I coached in England!
Good for larger groups
Small space doesn’t rule out station work, though. In fact, sometimes stations is a good way to manage large numbers of players on a single court.
For example, one session I split the team into 4 groups. One group was the setters, who worked at the net on one side of the court. One group was defenders digging coach attacked balls on the court behind the setters. The other two groups were in a free ball passing drill on the other half of the court with a coach sending the ball over the net from near the setting group. We rotated the 3 non-setter groups between the digging and passing stations. This allowed us to efficiently use the space and work on key skills.
Obviously, what you do with stations in your training facility depends on your space and resources. Be creative about how you put all that stuff to use, though, and keep in mind that you need not be as rigidly constrained as you’d think.
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