"Meetup groups offer a chance to get into the game at little expense and usually have openings." (Photo credit: WikiMedia.org)
Since its inception at the 1996 Olympics, beach volleyball has exploded in popularity, and what was once a recreational sport now garners support from over sixty universities with Division 1 beach volleyball programs.
- Saturday, March 2, 2019, 9 a.m. to noon
Mission Beach - End of San Gabrial Place at 2898 Ocean Front Walk
Free - $1
Volleyball club 692 Beach San Diego has a handful of their members commit to a university on scholarships every year, and Wave Volleyball has eleven members committed to Division 1 universities including Cal, USC, Stanford, and Hawaii in 2019.
The only Olympian to win a gold medal in hard court and beach volleyball, Karch Kiraly, trained at the old Federal Building in Balboa Park in the 1980s (now the Hall of Champions).
For those with no aspirations toward collegiate competition or making the Olympic team, but would still like to play, there are opportunities. There are over a dozen beach volleyball courts, from Oceanside’s Lifeguard Tower 31 courts, to the Central Beach courts in Coronado, and several clubs.
Meetup groups offer a chance to get into the game at little expense and usually have openings, but some experience is necessary. Not to worry, most clubs offer beginner training.
San Diego (Mostly) Beach Volleyball Meetup group is the largest volleyball group on Meetup.com with over 4,200 members and weekly games to join. The cost is free, though there is a suggested donation of $1 per event for equipment.
Skill requirements are not tough, as per the group’s Meetup.com website: “So that we can have a minimum level of play for everyone, players should have an ability to pass a ball to the setter before attending. If you're a beginner who’s never played before, you will need to have beginner's lessons before attending. Adult lessons and clinics are offered with The Coast Volleyball Club, San Diego Beach Volleyball Club, Ken Murczek, VAVI, or maybe even a patient friend.”