Three Easy Steps to Measure Existing Volleyball Floor Sleeves

Amy Deschaine

Volleyball’s popularity has grown dramatically in the last two decades, and it’s common for universities, schools, and recreational centers to have floor sleeves for volleyball net systems. While some institutions have carefully chosen the type of floor sleeves they want to install, the decision may have been left to the builder (for new construction) or the previous facilities manager. You might have no idea what size the existing floor sleeves are, which can create issues when installing a new volleyball net system. Here’s how to properly measure your floor sleeves in three easy steps.

Step One: Measure the Bottom of the Volleyball Post to Find the Inside Sleeve Diameter

Floor sleeves are located beneath the gym floor and their tops start about one to two inches under the floor. When ordering a new volleyball net system, a sports equipment manufacturer requires three different measurements to ensure they send the correct size posts. Use this form to record your measurements as you work.

The first measurement needed is the inside sleeve diameter. This may seem like a tricky thing to measure, and at SNA we’ve seen people try all sorts of methods. But there’s one very simple way to do it, and that is to measure the diameter of the bottom of your existing volleyball post. Super simple! No need to try and cram a tape measure or fit a ruler into a small hole in the floor. Just grab the volleyball post and measure the diameter of the bottom of it. Unless you are in a very old gym, the diameter will be 3-inches, 3 ½-inches, or 4-inches. Some older buildings in Michigan and Canada will be 2 ⅜-inches.

Step Two: Use a Tape Measure to Find the Floor Sleeve Depth

The second measurement needed is the sleeve depth. This is the measurement from the floor surface to the bottom of the sleeve. The easiest way to find this is to stick a tape measure down to the bottom of the floor sleeve and see at what measurement the floor surface hits. A 3-inch or 3 ½-inch floor sleeve usually measures around 9-10 inches deep. A 4-inch sleeve is around 13 inches deep. You will need to measure the depth of ALL of your floor sleeves. They could have different depths depending on who installed them and when even though they should be uniform.

Step Three: Measure the Distance Between Floor Sleeves

To ensure you receive the appropriate volleyball net with your system, it’s important that you accurately measure the distance between your floor sleeves. Do this by measuring the distance between the sleeves from the center of one floor sleeve to the center of the opposite sleeve with a tape measure.

Can I Just Replace the Old Sleeves with New Ones?

When purchasing a new volleyball net system, some people may assume that it’s easier to replace the old floor sleeves with new ones. However, this is not the case! Removing old sleeves and installing new ones is extremely expensive and can cost nearly as much as the net system itself. 

To address this problem, SNA Sports was one of the first companies to modify their volleyball posts to fit existing floor sleeves. This is particularly helpful for coaches and athletic directors who have no control over the size of the sleeves in their gym, but still need a net system appropriate for their athletes’ level of play. Regardless of the size of your existing floor sleeves, we will either modify our net systems’ posts or offer adapters to be placed in your existing sleeves to ensure your athletes can play on the best possible net system.

Have questions about your current volleyball equipment or net system? SNA is here to help! Email our Technical Sales Specialist John Connors at or give us a call at 800.823.0182.