It’s fast, furious, competitive — and played with your posterior in full contact with the ground. Welcome to the sport of sitting volleyball.
Adapted from volleyball to allow anyone to take part — including people with a disability — sitting volleyball has been a Paralympic sport since 1980. When hitting or attacking the ball, the player must have one buttock or an extension of the torso still in contact with the floor. Because of the game’s quick pace, the use of your hands to move and play the ball, good balance and a sturdy bottom are a necessity.
Now The University of Nottingham Department of Physical Recreation and Sport have joined forces with Volleyball England and the Students’ Union Volleyball Club to bring the sport to University Park. Students, staff and members of the public are welcome to give the game a go at a Sitting Volleyball session, taking place at the University Park Sports Centre on Sunday November 15.
Players of any ability are welcome to try the sport — many sitting volleyball clubs across the country have both disabled and non-disabled players in their teams. The sport is fun and sociable, and can help improve cardiovascular fitness, core stability and coordination.
University Disability Sport Officer Hannah Webber said: “As a University we encourage sporting opportunities for all, both within the wider community and also for disabled and non-disabled students and staff. We hope that this session of sitting volleyball will generate interest, activity and inspiration, leading to a longer term legacy of sitting volleyball at the University.”
It is hoped that this pilot session will be the start of regular sitting volleyball events at the University. This first event will include training sessions from some the UK’s best volleyball coaches. Members of the Nottingham Rockets volleyball team will also be on hand to give advice and tips on playing the game.
Volleyball England is supporting the event and members of the Team GB volleyball squad will be playing on the day. They are looking to inspire the next generation of sitting volleyball players — and looking for potential stars for the London 2012 Paralympics team.
“Sitting Volleyball is a fun and exciting sport for all which is great for anyone with or without a disability,” said Andrew Skinner, who plays for the Great Britain sitting volleyball team. “I am really pleased to see it starting up in Nottingham and I hope it will give me the opportunity to develop as part of the GB programme.”
The sitting volleyball taster session is free. It takes place at the University Park Sports Centre on Sunday November 15 from 3pm to 5pm. For more information and to book your place on the event contact Hannah Webber, Disability Sports Officer at The University of Nottingham, on 0115 846 8121 or email hannah.webber [a] nottingham.ac (p) uk