Club Jumping...no, it is not a sport!
So what is Club Jumping? Club jumping is when a parent or player decides to leave one Volleyball club for another Volleyball club.
For many Club Volleyball is an investment. Most likely a coach has shown an interest in their daughter and has recommended they play Club volleyball because they think they may develop the skills to play volleyball at the collegiate level.
College athletic scholarships are hard to come by but not impossible if you work hard and play Club Volleyball...high school volleyball will NOT get you a Volleyball scholarship. So parents and players alike heed the advice of this coach and take the dive into club volleyball. A time expense, A monetary expense, all in the hopes that their daughter will improve and get that coveted prize of a college scholarship. Myself, I was very proud and still proud of my daughter Abbey and my son Tim Jr when they received Athletic Scholarships to play volleyball in college. For me it was a blessing as I financially could not afford to pay for their college otherwise. The other alternative was student loans and I did not want them to graduate from college and spend the next 30 years paying off $100,000 in student loans.
So on to the club jumping....
There are many reasons why people club jump but all to often it turns out to be a bad decision and all to often with tragic consequences. They will club jump because they are not seeing the desired result fast enough. Parents/players often are too impatient and expect instant improvement or results with their sons/daughters volleyball skills. Part of the problem is we live in an Instant Gratification society and we want it all and we want it now. With sports training, it simply does not work that way. To improve, you have to put in the TIME, you have to put in the EFFORT if you want to achieve the desired results. Yes, there are those few gifted athletes that simply have a god given talent and everything they do comes easy to them, but they are the exception and rare.
If you put in the TIME and you put in the EFFORT, you WILL see results. Typically what is taught doesn't take full effect until months later. Usually, four to six months later before you will see the full effect of the training. Until then it will be hit or miss, good days and bad days and that is apart of the learning process. Failure is apart of the learning process. As long as the player is truly giving full effort and they stick with it through the good days and the bad days, they will have no choice but to improve!
One of the biggest reasons for club jumping is because the parents or player feel they deserve to be on a the Elite team and anything less is beneath their child's skill level. This is one of the biggest mistakes that parents make by not accepting their child's placement and shopping around from club to club just so they can claim their child made the "ELITE" team. For us, there is a reason why we selected your child to be on a certain team. After tryouts, we take our time when placing players to teams and we do our best to not only help the team but to help the player and place them in the best possible situation for everyone. Our goal is for that player to thrive, improve, play and ultimately become a much better player. We look at playing time for the player, are there others on that team that play the exact same position and will this be an opportunity for your child to become one of the leaders of team and so on.
Others just want their child to be on a winning team irregardless of how much playing time their child will get. We get it, everyone wants to win but at what cost. I'd rather have my child learning and developing so she will become the best possible player she can be. Whether it's an Elite team, National team or Regional team, I want her to thrive and improve and also get the opportunity to do so and not buried on the bench just so I can say "My daughter plays on the 16's Elite team."
So why is it important to stay with one club and not switch year to year?
In a word - Consistency. UPONTOP Volleyball Academy has the best coaches around in my opinion from top to bottom. However, there are good coaches at other programs as well. When you switch from one club to another you have to learn a new system, adjust to new players and coaches. Adjust to new coaches philosophies, learn new offenses and defenses, get used to a new gym and routine and most of all prove to your new coach and team you are as good as you say you are. Often times these same players leave one club for another and wind up on a lesser team, with a lesser coach and have a worse season than they did the year prior with their former club. Why? Again, because it takes 4 to 6 months to learn something new and when you switch clubs you are having to learn a LOT of new things. The end result, the player is unhappy, the parents are unhappy and then the cycles continues as they go to another club in search of the Golden Ticket that doesn't exist. Had they stayed with their first club this could have all been avoided and the player would have progressed much more than they have with the new club.
There are a few success stories of players switching clubs and having success but all to often it is the opposite and the player never reaches their full potential. The player never progresses, gets frustrated when they see their peers have passed them up in skill level and they don't understand how that could have happened. They eventually lose interest and stop playing.
In conclusion - My best advice is to find a club and stick with that club. Have patience with your coach and their training. You won't know how effective their coaching is for about 4 to 6 months after the fact. If there is no improvement at that point then maybe it is time to move on but do your homework, talk to your coach first, ask what your child needs to do to improve and get more playing time....often there is a reason why and your coach should have a solution. Seek out an answer and work with your coach, every coach out there wants your daughter to be a success so be proactive, ask questions and work with your coach.