The History of Volleyball

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The History of Volleyball

Jasmine Castro, Writer

Volleyball, or “Mintonette”, was created in 1895, just four years after basketball. It was invented by the Springfield College graduate and Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) member William G. Morgan. He decided to create a ball game that would incorporate ideas from basketball, baseball, tennis, and handball.

As the director of physical education at the YMCA, Morgan aimed for this new sport to be less physically demanding than the others, like basketball, and to interest others who have a lesser field of physical abilities, which is certainly no longer the case. He also included a net, like tennis, but raised it up to about six feet six inches, or almost two meters.

One problem that rose up was finding the right ball. At first, Morgan tried using a basketball bladder, which was too light and slow. Then, he tried using an actual basketball, which was the opposite but still impractical. A solution finally came up to the surface in 1900. It was a compact, lightweight ball that created new openings for tactical possibilities for the players.

The first offensive play style was introduced in the Philippines in 1916. It included setting and spiking the ball, which are fun techniques still used in volleyball to this day. In the year after that, the scoring system was changed from 21 to 15 points.

This fun sport was played for leisure and recreation until the early 1930s, with very few competitions and activities across the world. Volleyball soon became more popular in 1947 with the establishment of the Federation Internationale De Volley-Ball (FIVB). The inaugural World Championships were hosted in Prague, Czechoslovakia, two years after. In 1964, volleyball was included in the Tokyo Olympics.

At AHS specifically, volleyball is a beloved sport. Senior Joshua Lam, a current player on our Boys Varsity Volleyball team, vouches for the sport. He says, “I fell in love with playing volleyball since the seventh grade. I enjoy playing and still continue playing because of the people I’m able to meet and the adrenaline I always have on the court.” The game is not only intensive and fun, but, because it’s also a team sport, players are always able to connect with each other.

With the introduction of beach volleyball in the late 1930’s, the sport of volleyball continued to grow more popular. It also grew with global competitions like the FIVB World Championships, FIVB World League, FIVB World Cup, FIVB World Champions Cup, and the Olympic Games. Now, volleyball has over 800 million players internationally.

Courtesy of PEDIMENT.COM