Sun and Sand: The Benefits of Playing Beach Volleyball


May 13, 2024By Volleyball Paradise Club

Beach volleyball offers more than just fun under the sun; it's a vigorous sport that provides a comprehensive workout and numerous health benefits. This article delves into the physical, mental, and social advantages of playing beach volleyball, highlighting why this sport is a fantastic choice for both fitness enthusiasts and those looking for a new hobby. 

The Rise of Beach Volleyball as a Popular Sport

Beach volleyball has grown from humble beginnings into a globally recognized sport, featured prominently in international competitions like the Olympics. Its newer and more accessible appeal lies in its exciting gameplay and the beach setting, making it an attractive sport for all ages. 

Key Differences Between Beach Volleyball and Indoor Volleyball

Playing on sand requires different techniques and strategies compared to indoor volleyball. The uneven terrain impacts movement and energy expenditure, emphasizing the innate increase in conditioning and stability. On the other hand, the soft sand makes it less impactful on your joints, building muscular strength or what we call ‘Sand Legs’ just by walking on it.  

man in black shorts holding hands with woman in white tank top on beach during daytime

Physical Benefits of Beach Volleyball

Enhancing Cardiovascular Health

Beach volleyball is an excellent cardiovascular exercise. The continuous movement on the sand and the added jumping increases your heart rate, which helps improve heart health and burns a ton of calories! As a professional player, I do not add any cardio exercises outside of volleyball in my gym routine (no treadmills!).  

Building Muscular Strength and Endurance

The resistance of sand makes beach volleyball particularly effective for building lower body strength including ankle, knee & hip joint stability. It also enhances core stability, which is crucial for balancing and moving efficiently on the uneven sand surface.  

Improving Coordination and Agility

Navigating the sandy court requires quick changes of direction and speed, which greatly improve coordination and agility. These skills are transferable to many other sports and daily activities with a decreased risk in injury because of the grace the sand gives.  


Mental Benefits of Beach Volleyball

Stress Reduction and Mental Health

The natural beach setting and the positive endorphins from physical activity involved in beach volleyball are excellent for reducing stress. The serotonin release associated with sunlight exposure also boosts mood, enhancing overall mental health, not to mention the amazing and supportive reputation of the beach volleyball community.  

Enhancing Focus and Cognitive Functions

Playing beach volleyball requires concentration and strategic thinking, which can enhance cognitive functions over time. The dynamic nature of the game helps improve focus and mental agility.  

men playing volleyball

Social Benefits of Playing Beach Volleyball

Building Teamwork and Communication Skills

Beach volleyball is inherently a social sport that requires effective communication and teamwork. Regular play can improve interpersonal skills, which are valuable both on and off the court. There are many options of volleyball team formats from 4’s, 3’s, & 2’s, either way, there is immense amount of communication and teamwork incorporated in this sport! In addition, whenever you’re done playing, you’re already at the beach with all your friends, what could be better?

Expanding Social Networks

Joining a beach volleyball community can significantly expand one's social network, providing opportunities to meet people from diverse backgrounds and cultures.

Unique Aspects of Playing in Sand

How Sand Affects Play and Fitness

Playing in sand offers unique challenges and benefits. The unstable surface increases energy expenditure and engages more muscle groups compared to firm ground, providing a more intense workout. There are also different types of sand you’ll play on that require adjustments such as ‘shallow’ sand-making it easier to jump and move versus ‘deep’ sand that is harder to move in but easier to dive in.  

Adaptability and Strategy in Sand and Wind

Players must adapt their strategies to the sand's resistance, which can improve problem-solving skills and flexibility in thinking. The wind is one of the biggest obstacles of beach volleyball-always affecting each play and how you will play the ball. The play is never ‘fixed’ but depending on the wind, there is always a level of adaptation and compensation to account for.  

Getting Started with Beach Volleyball

a group of women playing a game of volleyball

Necessary Equipment and Where to Find It 

Starting beach volleyball doesn't require much equipment—a ball, basic sportswear, and sunscreen are sufficient. Detailed tips on selecting the right volleyball and other gear are provided.

Finding Local Beach Volleyball Clubs and Communities

Volleyball Paradise Club is currently located in Tampa Bay Area, but there are many clubs, coaches and uncovered players in every area! Try locating beach volleyball communities and clubs in your area, ensuring you can start playing and enjoying the game regardless of your skill level.

FAQs about Playing Beach Volleyball

What are the best times to play beach volleyball? 
Any time! Many players practice in the mornings before work (7-8:30AM), after work (5pm-dusk) or mid-day if they are able!  

How can I improve quickly in beach volleyball? 
Get a coach! Learning and improving quickly in anything, you’ll always get a teacher, the same thing is for beach volleyball! One hour with a coach correcting different habits can entirely change your game and give you goals to work towards. 
Are there age restrictions for playing beach volleyball? 
Never! As young or as old as possible! Top professional player John Hyden just retired at age 50 and was kicking 25 year old’s butts!  
What should I look for in beach volleyball gear? 
Sunglasses that stay on your head and a comfortable bathing suit, athletic wear and the occasional sand socks!  
How does playing beach volleyball affect the body long term? 
It increases your balance/stability, increases strength building your ‘sand legs’, tones your core and arms and increases your cardiovascular.  

Can beach volleyball help with weight loss? 
Absolutely! Just like Hot Yoga when you’re sweating the entire workout, but you’re having fun and it’s a game, it’s always going to increase weight loss due to the sweat and muscular strain.  

Conclusion: Why Choose Beach Volleyball?

Beach volleyball is not just a sport; it's a lifestyle that offers myriad benefits. Whether you're seeking to improve your physical fitness, mental well-being, or social life, beach volleyball provides a dynamic and enjoyable way to achieve these goals. Embrace the challenge and joy of beach volleyball, and experience the satisfaction of this engaging sport.