Raising the Bar
October 4, 2018 -
One of the unique aspects of Club Volleyball as a business is that there are virtually no barriers to entry. Anyone with a few hundred dollars in the bank can register a club with USA Volleyball. That's one of the reasons that approximately 20% of the volleyball clubs that are here today won't be here next season. But with the sport continuing to grow, there are plenty of start-ups in the wings to take their place. Indeed, A5 was a start-up when we opened our doors to tryouts back in 2004.
Volleyball Clubs have a variety of reasons for existing. Some are created to enable parents to coach their daughters; some exist to make money for ownership; many are treated as a hobby by their owner/director; some clubs are de facto High School teams playing together in the off season; several clubs are faith-based; you get the drift.
As you consider which club(s) to try out for this season, we encourage you to do your homework; attend informational meetings; talk to parents; ask yourself, "why does this club exist?" and "are they likely to be here for the long term?"
We won't hypothesize about other organizations, but we will certainly tell you about ours. A5 came into being 14 years ago for the purpose of creating a nationally competitive volleyball here in the South - changing lives and giving athletes the opportunity to play the sport at a high level in their teens, thus opening doors for them to play in college if that is their goal - all consistent with our mission statement, "teaching life lessons through the sport of volleyball."
As a 501 (c) 3 non-profit, we are not in it for the money.
And we intend to be here for decades to come.
Indeed, this is a shot of A5 Executive Director Michael Fletcher with Northern Lights' Executive Director Curt Glesmann, taken as Fletcher was touring Northern Lights' highly regarded training and competition center last week. Fletcher and A5's Development Team have been visiting many of the top volleyball facilities in the U.S. over the past several months, enabling us to learn from others' best practices so that we can create a best-in-class facility if and when we develop the next generation of SVC.
Bottom Line: if you and your daughter are serious about volleyball and want to train and compete at the highest level, do your homework in advance, and register soon to try out for the 3rd-ranked club in the nation. Why would you choose to play anywhere but A5?