Elementary school gym class: Were you the sporty one or did you have a mysterious stomachache that recurred each week the same place on the same day and at the same time? (Or maybe you "forgot" your gym shorts each week.) If you were the latter like us, than team sports are probably the last thing you'd try.
But what if you found out Jonathan Scott wanted to go on a beach volleyball date with you? After all, the sport is one of his Summer Essentials. Plus, it's actually an awesome way to spend Saturday afternoons in the summer and a great way to meet you. And we promise, you don't have to wear anything approaching a bikini. This is What to Do When Jonathan Scott asks you on a Date, Beach Volleyball Edition.
You may not be ready to soar through the air and skid through the sand just yet, but with practice and with some insight you'll be a partner Jonathan wish he had on his team.
What is Beach Volleyball?
Beach volleyball is a team sport played on a sand court. This court is divided in half by a net that is 2.43 metres high. In many recreational games there are six members on each team. But this number is often reduced down to four members and later two depending on comfort level and expertise. So in other words, it will just be you and Jonathan if you’re a quick learner. Until then, look for a pick-up game or beginner's league.
How Do You Win...Over Jonathan’s Heart?
The team's collective goal is to ground as many balls on the opponent's side of the net. The opposing team does all that it can to prevent this from happening during their three “contacts.” This means that once the opposing team serves the ball you have three opportunities to have the ball in play on your side of the net before (ideally) landing it on the opponent’s side of the court.
This back and forth continues “until the ball is grounded on the playing court, goes ‘out’ or a team fails to return it properly” in what is called a rally, Volleyball Canada writes. The team that ends a rally gets a point and now has the ball in her court and gets the right to serve. The first team to get to 21 points with a lead of two points wins.
“I’ll Just Stay in the Back”
Not possible in this game. Every time a rally ends, team members rotate clockwise. Teams also switch sides of the court every seven points. Sorry.
What’s the Difference?
The main difference between the indoor sport that you watched from the sidelines in elementary school and the game that you will be playing with Jonathan on the beach is just that. Beach volleyball is played on an outdoor sand-covered court. Also indoor volleyball is often more structured and coach-driven.
Shawn McPhee is the manager of beach programs for the Ontario Volleyball Association. He says that the atmosphere is very relaxed and sociable. While exercise is the main draw for some league members—he says that one hour of play burns 800-100 calories—meeting new people, spending time outdoors and drinking after the game are pluses too! (Your city's local Meet-Ups likely have a singles volleyball league, increasing your odds of meeting Mr. Right, even if it isn't Mr. Scott himself.)
Beach volleyball is a relatively inexpensive sport. Jonathan probably already has a ball of his own, but if you want to pick one up to practice with it can cost you anywhere from $25 to $50.
A portable net can cost you around $120, which is a reasonable investment if you think beach volleyball will be the sport for you, and especially if you have friends who will take it up or commit to practising with you.
And the clothing the sport requires can be found in your closet. First, you’re barefoot so that’s free and the uniform is a bathing suit or a t-shirt and shorts combo.
The most common injuries would be centred around the shoulder or ankle regions, but these happen rarely McPhee says. The most important thing to keep in mind is proper warm-up procedures. Here are his best tips for getting your game on, beach volleyball-style.
1. Pick up a Ball and Practice. “Don’t be afraid of the ball just go out and try it. Just pick up a ball and practice,” McPhee says.
2. Stretch Properly. “Warm up all the major muscle groups that you will use, because the last thing you want is to get injured.”
3. Watch it on TV. “When there’s an opportunity, take a look at what the pros are doing.” (And hello! Totally a fun date idea.)
Now that you’re equipped with all the beach volleyball knowledge you need, get out there and enjoy. Are you prepared for a Jonathan Scott beach volleyball date?