THE South Gippsland Volleyball Association, previously known as the Korumburra Volleyball Association, is one of the state’s most active grassroots’ organisations for the sport in Australia.
They rarely miss a chance to promote the sport to newcomers and also to schools.
They participate in all initiatives, run beach volleyball competitions, local comps and coaching, and are well-known for producing elite athletes who have gone on to compete at all levels.
So, it was hardly surprising to see that when Volleyball Victoria and Volleyball Australia offered an exclusive Professional Development Opportunity for coaches of volleyball, both in school and community programs, South Gippsland was one of the two district groups to put up their hand and be successful.
The result was that former Australian junior player and South Australian representative, now Volleyball Australia sporting schools’ educator Zack Lawley-Knott arrived at Leongatha Splash last Thursday to take local coaches of volleyball, from schools and the association through their paces.
The association’s state liaison officer, a legend in the sport at a community level, Tom Saario, was delighted with the outcome.
“We’ve had a great turnout from the schools and by our local coaches and they received some excellent support and training to take back to their schools and the players locally,” said Tom.
“Each primary school these days has a sporting schools program and can apply for government grants to establish a sport or try a sport in their schools. Volleyball is just one of them but we stand ready to take our sport to the schools.
“On the night last Thursday we had coaches from several schools come along including the two Korumburra primary schools, St. Josephs and Korumburra Primary, also Mary
MacKillop, Phillip Island YMCA and a few others, plus our own coaches.
“At various times we’ve taken a program to the schools and we’d happily support that sort of activity again.”
As well as coaching the coaches, Zack and his support team also got the chance to interact with the primary-school-age ‘Spike Zone’ session, for kids aged 8 and above, the equivalent of Aussie Hoops and Auskick, held 6pm to 7.30pm each Thursday together with junior competition followed by the seniors at 7.30pm.
“The juniors can continue on and play in the senior competition as well. Thursday at Leongatha Splash is our night,” said Tom.
If you’d like to get started with volleyball at any level, young or old, contact Tom Saario on 5658 1043 during office hours.
Coaching for the coaches at South Gippy volleyball