Today, Volleyball continues to draw large crowds into stadiums because of its fast-paced, exciting nature. In fact, the game is played everywhere. Whether it’s tossing a ball back and forth in your neighborhood street, teaming up with a high school varsity team, or playing in the big leagues, volleyball remains to be a favorite among locals.
Here are four things you probably didn’t know about Philippine volleyball:
GAMETIME SINCE THE 1910’s
Volleyball first introduced itself to Pinoys during 1910, when YMCA’s Eldwood Brown taught a young group of boys about the back-and-forth sport. Did you know the game was originally played as a street sport? But since it’s existence, volleyball has developed into a nationwide competitive sport.
EVOLVING THE GAME
One of the basic rules of a volleyball match is that each possession is only allowed a maximum of three hits. During the late 1910’s, Filipinos were responsible for the three-hit rule that the entire world of volleyball adapts to and follows today. Not only did this crank up the speed of matches, but forced teams to come up with strategic plays to outscore opponents.
The three-hit rule isn’t the only thing Pinoy’s came up with. The spike, the game’s most dominant scoring tool, too, was a product of our country’s efforts to push the game. The set, a tactical offensive set-up was also one of our game inventions.
It was in 1993 when the Philippines were the queens of Asian volleyball. This was courtesy of the legendary team composed of the country’s elite collegiate athletes, lead by Russian coach Stanislav Lyuglao.
One notable member of the ’93 team was Thelma Barina, a 5-foot-8 Cebuana open spiker who wore the Philippine colors for 14 years. She’s also considered to be the Rachelle Anne Daquis of her time, because of her superstardom in the volleyball scene. During one report, Barina shares her insights on what the present team can learn from their predecessors, “During training camps we matured as players and as a team. That’s what we need now if we want to become strong in this sport again.”
The 2000’s then saw volleyball become a famous college sport, where teams would go head-to-head in the UAAP or NCAA tournaments. If they were lucky enough, athletes moved on to the famous Shakey’s V-League to compete against stronger talent.
Today, with the emergence of commercial leagues like the Philippine Super Liga (PSL), Beach Volleyball Republic (BVR), Asian Volleyball Conference (AVC), athletes have more avenues to showcase, develop, and expose their talent. Most importantly, volleyball stars can continue to inspire newcomers who are just getting into the sport.