|Q:||What are the differences among volleyballs?||
Indoor vs. Outdoor Volleyballs
Indoor Volleyballs: On indoor volleyballs, the panels are glued to an inner lining so the seams look smooth on the volleyball. This production method gives the volleyball more consistent playability. Indoor volleyballs weigh just a little less than outdoor volleyballs because indoor volleyballs do not need to contend with blowing wind.
Outdoor Volleyballs: On outdoor volleyballs, it is obvious that the panels are sewn because you can see the holes and the threads holding the panels together. This stitching makes the volleyball more durable. Outdoor volleyballs also weigh just a little more than indoor volleyballs to prevent the volleyball from blowing in the wind as much.
Materials - Leather vs. Synthetic Composite
Leather Volleyballs: Leather volleyballs traditionally are the top quality volleyballs. Different grades of leather exist. Consequently, the highest priced leather volleyball will have the best feel and playability. Generally, as the price decreases, the leather volleyball becomes harder and will not be as easy to play with. However, not everyone wants the softest volleyball, so some top-of-the-line volleyballs are made harder than others for different tastes in playability. Typically, people who like to hit the ball hard (usually male volleyball players) prefer a harder volleyball. Backrow players, by contrast, usually prefer a softer volleyball.
Synthetic and Composite Volleyballs: Every company has its own ideas and inventions regarding composite fabrics used to produce synthetic and composite volleyballs. Most companies claim their volleyballs are the best. However, that is for the volleyball player to decide. Personal taste dictates whether you prefer the playability of one composite volleyball over another composite volleyball. As with leather volleyballs, composite volleyballs also lose playability as the price goes down. Composite volleyballs typically are regarded as practice balls, so most major volleyball leagues (school, club, pro) use leather volleyballs. However, a few leagues, such as the AVP, use a composite volleyball.
|Q:||What are the official volleyballs for high school, college, and professional volleyball leagues?||
|A:||Indoor Professional Volleyball Leagues (USA)
As far as we know, no indoor professional volleyball leagues exist in the USA. At the very least, none of the manufacturers that we deal with list any of their volleyballs as official products of any professional league, excluding the 2012 Olympics.
Indoor/Outdoor Professional Volleyball Leagues (Worldwide)
The official balls for professional volleyball leagues worldwide are as follows:
2012 London Olympics:
Here is a list of official volleyballs used in American colleges:
No single volleyball is considered the "official volleyball" for high school play. The official ball for your high school will depend on your federation, league, or division. However, all official balls for high school must have the NFHS (National Federation of High Schools) stamp. The following volleyballs carry the NFHS stamp:
|Q:||Can we use colored volleyballs in our league?||
The answer to this question has changed drastically since 2010. It's basically up to the league or federation in which you are playing.
Colored volleyballs have been used in college, internationally, and the Olympics for years.
The National Federation of High Schools (NFHS) now allows colored volleyballs, so you can use colored volleyballs from a variety of volleyball brands for high school play. However, the NFHS requires that high schools use only volleyballs with the NFHS stamp on them.
Most volleyball leagues sign contracts with manufacturers to use their volleyballs. Organizations such as the NCAA, FIFA, and the Olympics have signed contracts with specific manufacturers to use specific volleyballs.
For club volleyball, it's up to your regional club organization to decide which volleyballs are eligible for play.
Most volleyball associations, other than high school and college, do not notify us of the requirements. Therefore, it's best to check with your governing body to verify which volleyballs are acceptable for play.
|Q:||How do I care for my indoor leather volleyball?|
|A:||Store indoor leather volleyballs in a cool dry environment and do not expose your volleyball to extreme temperatures or outside elements. We recommend cleaning your volleyball with a mild soap and water solution.|
|Q:||What is the recommended amount of inflation for my volleyball?|
|A:||The recommended inflation (psi) of most volleyballs is marked around its valve area. Be sure to moisten the inflation needle before inserting it into the valve. You also may want to refer to the official volleyball rule book for exact requirements.|
|Q:||How do I know when my volleyball is fully inflated?|
|A:||We recommend using an inflation gauge to determine the exact amount of pressure. Do not use a high pressure compressor like those used at industrial sites and gas stations. Rather, you should use a small inflator or hand pump, similar to the models that we carry.|
|Q:||How can I preserve the leather on my volleyball?|
|A:||The best way to preserve a leather volleyball is simply to use it. This releases the natural oils and characteristics of the material, comparable to "breaking in" a fine pair of shoes. We do not recommend using any topical ointment or creme to preserve the leather, nor do we recommend using indoor leather volleyballs for outdoor play. You should use a volleyball that is specifically designed for either indoor play or outdoor play.|
|Q:||What is composite leather?|
|A:||Composite leather is a man-made material manufactured with high fiber content to simulate the characteristics and durability of natural leather.
|Q:||What are the differences among volleyball shoes?||
What makes a volleyball shoe a volleyball shoe, as opposed to a basketball shoe or a running shoe? The short answer is soles and weight.
Soles: The sole is at the heart of what makes a volleyball shoe a volleyball shoe. Most volleyball shoes have gum rubber soles. Gum rubber is the best material for soles because volleyball shoes are made for indoor court surfaces (usually wood) and because volleyball requires a lot of starting, stopping, and quick cuts. Gum rubber provides the best traction for the volleyball shoe on the very smooth wooden court surface. Other athletic shoes, such as running shoes, do not use gum rubber because they are designed either for outdoor use or for a greater variety of surfaces. Gum rubber does not look like the rubber used on most athletic shoes. Rather than being solid in appearance, gum rubber is semi-transparent (you can almost see through it). If the soles on the volleyball shoes you just received DO NOT match your mental picture of gum rubber, it is because today's gum rubber is dyed to match the shoe. Manufacturers also mix other types of rubber with the gum rubber in the sole to improve traction and mobility.
Weight: Weight is the other feature that makes a volleyball shoe a volleyball shoe. Almost all the top volleyball shoes are lightweight. Some volleyball shoes may be a bit heavier; however, these usually are the less expensive models.
What are the Chief Differences among Volleyball Shoes?
Basic Design: Volleyball shoes are like most other athletic shoes in this respect. That is, every manufacturer has its own designs for uppers, midsoles, cushioning, and support. You need to read the description of each volleyball shoe and compare the different features of each in order to decide which volleyball shoe is best for you.
Materials: Modern volleyball shoes are no longer made of leather. At one time, you could buy all leather or all synthetic leather volleyball shoes, but those days are long gone. The reason is that leather shoes, on the whole, are heavier. Consequently, leather is not the best material for volleyball shoes. Most volleyball shoes today are a combination of synthetic leather and mesh uppers. This composition provides lighter weight, more breathability, and faster drying.
Support: All volleyball shoes are enhanced by manufacturers to have additional cushioning and support. Examples:
Price: Price is another area where volleyball shoes resemble most other athletic shoes. More expensive volleyball shoes usually are better and they offer fancier features. Typically the higher priced volleyball shoes are lighter and offer better traction, more cushioning, and more support. However, these characteristics may not make your foot happier. Sometimes a less expensive volleyball shoe will fit your foot better and be more comfortable.
Here at realvolleyball.com we carry only the top models of each volleyball shoe from each manufacturer. So, even though a particular shoe is not the most expensive shoe on our site, it will be a very good volleyball shoe. Realvolleyball.com's website offers volleyball shoes from each manufacturer, but we do no not offer EVERY model from each manufacturer. That is because we select only those models of volleyball shoes from each manufacturer that we consider high enough quality for our customers to use when playing volleyball.
|Q:|| My volleyball shoes have a colored sole. Will these soles leave marks on the gym floor?
If your volleyball shoes were purchased from realvolleyball.com, they should not mark the floor. All brands of volleyball shoes that we carry have non-marking soles. If you have any problems with your volleyball shoes marking the floor, please contact us so that we can rectify the problem.
|Q:||What are the differences among volleyball kneepads?||
Bubble Style Kneepads vs. Flat Style
Two different types of volleyball kneepads exist — bubble style kneedpads and flat style kneedpads.
Bubble style kneepads: This style used to be the only type of volleyball kneepad available and it is what most people think of as a traditional style kneepad. Basically, a bubble style kneepad has a big pad in the front of the knee, directly on your kneecap. The bubble style kneepad is rather thick (thus the name, bubble type), and it provides a lot of cushioning if you fall straight forward onto your knees. Unfortunately, this style volleyball kneepad is not as readily available as it used to be. In fact, we carry and know of only two bubble style kneepads — the Asics ZD0009 and the Tachikara TKP kneepad (shown at right). Mizuno and Adidas no longer even make a bubble style volleyball kneepad.
Flat style kneepads: Flat style volleyball kneepads were first brought out by Mizuno in the mid 1990s. This style, dubbed the MZ-J1, was quite different from all the volleyball kneepads available then, and it proved to be quite popular. Consequently, most volleyball kneepads made today are the flat style.
The MZ-J1 was so successful because it provided two features that many volleyball players liked. First, it wasn't as bulky as the bubble style, allowing volleyball players to move better. Second, the flat style MZ-J1 kneepad could wrap around the knee (which is why some people refer to flat type volleyball kneepads as "wrap around kneepads"). This wrap around style provided some padding to the sides of the knees, a feature that went over very well because in volleyball, 6 people are stuck in a small square, increasing the chances of running into their teammates. (Although some players may rarely fall on the ground, depending on their position, they still run into their teammates.) Also, when players fall down, they don't always fall perfectly straight forward, making a case for padding along the sides of the knee.
The downside of flat style volleyball kneepads is that they have less padding directly in front of the knee, which is why some players prefer the bubble style. So when these players do fall directly straight ahead onto their kneecaps, they do not get as much cushioning with a flat style kneepad as they would with the bubble style.
Differences among Kneepad Styles
Asics, Mizuno and Adidas also make junior volleyball kneepads, which are the same as the standard models but with a smaller diameter sleeve.
As you can see, which features are best for you really depends upon your personal preference for comfort, protection, and ease of movement in a volleyball kneepad.
|Q:||What is the best portable outdoor volleyball system?|
Here at realvolleyball.com, we carry two brands of portable outdoor volleyball systems: Ultimate Systems and Park and Sun. As their name implies, Ultimate Systems is into hardcore volleyball. They strive to make their top outdoor volleyball systems as close to an indoor volleyball system as possible. For example, they make the volleyball net as tight as possible for play off the net. Plus, everything in the Ultimate Systems volleyball system is heavy duty so it can take a lot of abuse. Ultimate Systems do tend to be heavier to carry around and more complicated to set up than some other outdoor volleyball systems. As you'd expect, the lower-priced Ultimate Systems units start to lose playability and durability, which may or may not be right for you.
We also carry outdoor volleyball systems from Park and Sun. This company makes nice volleyball systems, though they are not as heavy duty as the top Ultimate Systems volleyball systems. Park and Sun's volleyball systems are, however, easier to set up than Ultimate Systems units.
The suspension setup for the net represents the major difference between Ultimate Systems and Park and Sun's outdoor volleyball systems. Park and Sun's poles go directly into the binding of the volleyball net. By contrast, Ultimate Systems units do not connect the net and the poles directly; instead, they feature a suspension setup connecting the volleyball net to the pole using either ropes or straps. This suspension setup enables you to adjust the tension on the volleyball net more than you can with the Park and Sun outdoor volleyball systems. Park and Sun's volleyball systems may not provide as good playability as those from Ultimate Systems, but they do play well and are easy to set up.
Portable outdoor volleyball systems can be complicated and involve tradeoffs; so if you have any other questions, please give us a call.
|Q:||Do you carry volleyball nets?|
Yes, we carry volleyball nets. However, we do not show them on our website because ordering the correct volleyball net can be quite complicated. The right volleyball net for you will depend on a several factors, including: the kind (brand) of volleyball uprights you will use with this net; whether you want rope or steel cables in the net; and whether you want a wooden dowel in the ends of the volleyball net. We also can have custom volleyball nets made for you. Please call us if you need a volleyball net.
|Q:||What are the dimensions of the beach volleyball short court?|
The short court dimensions are 8 meters by 8 meters for each side of the volleyball court or 16 meters by 8 meters for the entire volleyball court. The standard dimensions for a volleyball court are 30 feet by 30 feet for each side or 60 feet by 30 feet. A meter is about 39 inches long, so this reduces the size of each side of the volleyball court from 30 feet by 30 feet to about 26 feet by 26 feet.
|Q:||Do you do any silk screening?|
We carry all sorts of volleyball uniforms, but we do not silk screen them ourselves. However, we can have silk screening done for you. We use the biggest and best silk screener in Los Angeles. This company screens uniforms from the NCAA, to the NFL, to the Harlem Globetrotters. Our screener also does embroidery and tackle twill. Some silk screeners may be faster and less expensive, but our silk screener produces results that will make your volleyball team very happy with their uniforms. Silk-screening volleyball uniforms takes about two weeks.
Because screening can become complicated, we do not include information about it on the website. Please give us a call if you want any volleyball uniforms, T shirts, sweatshirts, or bags screened. You may email us also, but a call usually is a more efficient way to avoid the back and forth flying emails that typically result when we try to figure out exactly what you want done.
|Q:||When should I place my order for volleyball uniforms for the upcoming high school or college Fall volleyball season?|
High school volleyball season usually starts at the beginning of September; college volleyball season starts roughly a couple of weeks before that.
The major suppliers of volleyball uniforms usually bring out their new uniform styles in May, so you probably will want to wait at least until then to order, so you can see which new volleyball uniform styles will be available for the Fall season. If you order before May, the new volleyball uniform styles will not be available yet, and most of the suppliers' inventory from the last year's styles will be very low.
We will update our website with the new volleyball uniform styles as soon as they become available. If you've visited our women's volleyball uniforms or men's volleyball uniforms page before, please be sure to refresh your page so that you see the most current volleyball uniforms available.
If you place your orders in May, June, or July, you should be in very good shape to receive your uniforms before the start of the Fall volleyball season. If you need screening for your uniforms, please note that screening takes at least 2 weeks, in addition to normal shipping time.
Any orders for new uniforms placed after August 1st should have plenty of time to be completed before Fall volleyball season starts. However, as we get farther into August, we start to run into two problems:
1. Our screener will become more backed up.
2. The manufacturers start to run out of stock of the most popular styles, colors, and sizes of volleyball uniforms. We stock many uniforms here, but we cannot stock every single color and style. And the manufactures never make enough of the most popular uniforms for the whole country, no matter how many they make.
Please don't think that we can't supply your team uniforms if you order after August 1st! August and September are the two busiest months of the year and that is when we deliver the majority of the teams volleyball uniforms. Availability of volleyball uniforms depends most on the current fashion trends, along with the supply from the manufacturer of the uniforms in the fashion and color that you want. Some manufacturers are more organized than others.
|Q:||Can you explain the differences in colors among volleyball uniforms?|
Certain colors used in volleyball uniforms are just what they sound like. Black is black, white is white, as are orange, purple, and pink.
Cardinal is the most confusing color used with most school team colors. Cardinal is very similar to maroon, but these are two different colors. Cardinal has more red in it, while maroon has more purple. Most volleyball uniform manufacturers use cardinal for their uniforms; Adidas, however, uses maroon. Teams that wear cardinal include: NFL: Washington Redskins; College: USC, Arizona State.
Blue is the color with the most variations. Royal blue is a very blue blue. For example, the LA Dodgers, Indianapolis Colts, Duke University all use royal blue. Navy blue is a dark blue. Teams and colleges that use navy blue include New England Patriots, Notre Dame, Dallas Cowboys, and the Chicago Bears. Columbia blue is a powder-blue color used by the University of North Carolina, San Diego Chargers' throwback uniforms, and UCLA.
Green also has many variations. Kelly Green is a "true" green. The Boston Celtics uniforms are kelly green. Most volleyball uniform manufacturers no longer make uniforms in this color. Forest green is a dark green. Most green team uniforms these days are forest green and nearly every volleyball uniform manufacturer uses forest green.
The last two regular colors are scarlet and gold.
Scarlet is red. Teams using this color include Indiana University, Kansas City Chiefs, Chicago Bulls, and the Cincinnati Reds.
Gold is slightly more complicated. Gold comes in two main variations: Vegas gold and Athletic gold. Vegas gold is a sparkly gold. Tachikara puts it on their colored volleyballs, although they call it vintage gold. Football teams, including the San Francisco 49ers, St Louis Rams, UCLA, and Notre Dame, are the main users of Vegas gold in their uniforms. However, if one of your volleyball team's colors is Vegas gold and the uniform that you want doesn't come in Vegas gold, you can always have it screened in Vegas gold.
Athletic gold basically is just yellow. Because it is difficult to make sparkly volleyball uniforms from today's most commonly used fabrics, most gold volleyball uniforms are athletic gold. However, Adidas uses a shade called sandstorm, which is supposed to be similar to Vegas gold but is not quite as sparkly. Adidas does use athletic gold in some of their volleyball shoes. Examples of teams using athletic gold are University of Michigan, USC, Green Bay Packers, and the LA Lakers.
The colors royal blue, kelly green, scarlet, and athletic gold are basically your kindergarten crayon colors of blue, green, red, and yellow.
A few remaining colors are used in some volleyball products, but not always in uniforms. Silver is similar to gold, with a sparkly and non-sparkly variation. Sparkly silver is used mainly in football uniforms, such as those for Seattle Seahawks, Detroit Loins and Ohio State. For volleyball uniforms and volleyballs, light gray substitutes for silver, but it isn't sparkly like the football uniforms.
Choosing colors can be tricky for several reasons, including these:
If you have any further questions, please call us (800-215-3574) and we'll do our best to answer.
|Q:||Why does one player have a different color jersey than all of the other players?|
The player with a different colored jersey is the Libero.
What is the libero?
The volleyball libero is a defensive specialist position in indoor volleyball. The position was added to the game in 1999 along with special rules for play in order to foster more digs and rallies and to make the game more exciting. The libero remains in the game at all times and is the only player not limited by rules of rotation. He usually replaces the middle blocker position when they rotate to the back row and never rotates to the front row himself. (Liberos exist in both men's and women's volleyball; we use the masculine term here for convenience.)
The libero is chosen by the team before the match or tournament and that designated player must remain the libero for the entire match or tournament. If the libero is injured, he can be replaced by any player who is not on the court, but that player must remain the libero for the remainder of the match.
What does the libero do during a play?
The libero is responsible for a great deal of the passing in serve receive. Often the libero will be responsible for a much greater part of the court than his teammates. The libero is in the game to add ball control, so his main responsibility is to pass the ball well so the team can run the offense. On defense the libero needs to dig well, getting a hand on every ball he can to keep the play alive. Since the libero has no attack responsibilities, he must chase down every ball he can. He also may be responsible for setting if the ball is dug by the setter or out of the setter's range.
|Q:||How accurate are shipping charges shown on my online order?|
Shipping charges on realvolleyball.com's website are estimates only. Actual freight charges for your order will depend on what you order and where you ship it.
If you order over-sized items such as ball carts or portable outdoor systems the freight probably will be higher.
If we are shipping to Hawaii or Alaska you should definitely contact us for accurate freight charges. Our estimated shipping charges usually are fairly accurate. Sometimes, however, they differ significantly from the estimate. In this case, we will call to get approval to ship your order. If you have any questions, please call or email us and we will provide you with an accurate shipping cost.
|Q:||Can I use a purchase order to make a purchase?|
Yes, you can. We only accept purchase orders from schools or school districts. You have several options:
After placing the order, please fax the purchase order from the school to (858)279-5477 or email it to firstname.lastname@example.org, as we must follow the exact billing and shipping information provided on the purchase order. If you have any further questions or need more clarification, please call us at (800)215-3574.
|Q:||Why doesn't my online order show the correct California sales tax?|
Like the shipping costs, the tax rates given on our website are estimates only. When we process your order, we will charge you the correct tax rate for your county. Currently, there is no sales tax if you live outside California. Some states are hoping to charge out-of-state sales tax in the future, and we will try to inform you about any changes that affect your order.
|Q:||I entered my tax ID number online and/or I am not located in California. Why did I still get charged sales tax?|
Only customers with a resale license can be considered tax exempt. Also, a copy of your resale license needs to faxed or emailed to us directly. Fax: (858)279-5477 Email: email@example.com
If you are located in Mississippi, Texas, or Florida, you may be issued your county tax if you are ordering Asics items.
|Q:||I placed an online order for a pair of volleyball shoes, size 12 or larger. However, I did not get the 12+ discounted price.|
The 12+ discounted price refers to the number of pairs of volleyball shoes you ordered, not their size. You would need to order 12 pairs of these volleyball shoes (in any combination of sizes) to get the 12+ discounted price.
|Q:||I placed an online order but was told an item was unavailable. Why?|
Unfortunately, it is not possible for us to update the website automatically every time we run out of a volleyball product. We do apologize for this inconvenience and will update our website as often as we can to minimize the problem.