How to Choose a Volleyball System

Amy Deschaine

Choosing a volleyball system that best fits your program is critical for all levels of play because it directly impacts your athletes and their performance. Think of it like picking the perfect playlist for a road trip: it sets the tone, keeps everyone in sync and ensures you arrive at your destination with a smile. Whatever formation you use, each one shapes how players groove together on the court, making the most of their strengths and adapting smoothly to the rhythm of the game. Choosing the right volleyball system makes every attack, set and kill a hit!

Comparing Volleyball Systems

It can be overwhelming when considering the different features and benefits of multiple volleyball systems. Most people want a high quality system that will safely endure years of hard game play. While it can be an investment, it’s an investment worth making because it offers better value over time due to the durability and minimal maintenance requirements. Plus, a high quality system offers adjustable features, is more reliable and provides a better overall playing experience.

Here are some things to consider.

System Types

Volleyball systems are either in-sleeve or portable. In-sleeve systems are permanently installed with sleeves placed underneath the gym floor. SNA has multiple in-sleeve systems like The Edge, EZ Telescopic or Collegiate 4000.

Portable systems are easy to set up and adjust, but can require more storage space. SNA Sports offers portable net systems — the Portable Pro II and the Vision Pro Collegiate Portable. These are ideal when you can’t install floor sleeves.

Materials and Quality

The type of materials used in a volleyball system and the quality of those materials is a critical consideration and one that needs to consider durability, portability, performance and budget. Volleyball posts are made of carbon, aluminum or steel. Carbon provides premium performance with lightweight advantages. Aluminum balances weight and durability, while steel is reliable and cost-effective. Evaluating these features will help you determine which is best for your program based on usage and budget (it always comes back to the budget!).

Here are things to consider for materials and quality.

  • Carbon: Extremely strong and the lightest weight available with the newest technology, but it comes at a higher cost.
  • Aluminum: Lightweight and affordable with more deflection than carbon or steel.
  • Steel: Known for durability and affordability, but older technology and very heavy.

All of SNA Sports volleyball systems come with aluminum or carbon posts. We don’t sell steel posts anymore because they’re simply too heavy and with today’s innovative technology, steel posts are not an advantage for a program. Similarly, SNA ensures all of its volleyball posts work with any existing floor sleeve. Floor sleeve installation is often very expensive so even if a program has old sleeves in the floor, SNA will find a workaround so you can get the volleyball system that is the best for your program needs. More information about floor sleeves and measurements can be found in the SNA blog “Three Easy Steps to Measure Existing Volleyball Floor Sleeves”.

Net Options

Volleyball nets come in various styles based on their usage, specifications and requirements from organizations like the NCAA or Fédération Internationale de Volleyball (FIVB). They always come with a net so factors to take into consideration include: type of game play, adjustability and net tensioning mechanisms. Does your program take place indoors or outdoors? Will the net be used in competition and practice or solely for just one of those? What is the age group and skill level of those who will be using it? Each style of volleyball net is designed to meet specific requirements in terms of dimensions, materials, portability, and level of game play.

SNA sells two different types of nets. The first is the International Competition Volleyball Net where the cables and netting are pre-tensioned to provide a tight net each time it is set up. It’s been SNA’s most popular net for over 30 years because it only takes a four-point net attachment and some tension and it is ready to go.

The other net is SNA’s Kevlar Volleyball Net made for indoor and outdoor use and for all levels of play including collegiate-level NCAA matches. It’s designed as more of a traditional net, strong and durable, able to be used with nearly any system on the market today.

Height Adjustability

An important feature to take into consideration when choosing a volleyball system is the ease and range of the height adjustment. Volleyball systems differ greatly in their height adjustments and the range of adjustments that can be made. The differences depend on the level of play the system will be used in, the location (indoor vs. outdoor) and the height regulation requirements specified by organizations like the NCAA.

SNA Sports Volleyball Systems

SNA Sports Group stands out from its competitors in volleyball systems with their commitment to innovation, quality and player safety. They offer a full range of volleyball systems to meet every program need whether it’s for professional competitions, college, recreation or K-12 play. You can see a full product comparison of their best volleyball systems on the website. With a reputation built on excellence and a dedication to meeting customer needs, SNA continues to be the top choice for volleyball coaches, players and program directors worldwide.