Throughout 2018 preseason camp, returning VolleyMob All-Americans, other key players and even some coaches will be giving an inside glimpse into training camp at their respective schools.
They will introduce fans to their teams, share about drills, excitement for the season and more.
Colorado State setter Katie Oleksak, who was named Mountain West Preseason Player of the Year on Wednesday, shared her take on the Rams’ camp and some of the extracurricular activities that have led to team bonding thus far.
The Rams were picked as the favorites in the Mountain West race, while Oleksak, the reigning conference player of the year and a two-time AVCA Honorable Mention All-American, headlined the all-conference team. Oleksak averaged 11.94 assists per set and notched five double-doubles in 2017.
CSU kicks off the season on Aug. 24 when it welcomes Illinois and UNC Wilmington to Fort Collins.
When people think of preseason camp, they think all we do is volleyball. Well, there are many components to these two weeks than just practice. Camp consists of practicing, meetings, lifting, photo shoots, and promotion of the program.
It has been great so far; we have been making progress as a team and a program. Every day we split off and do individual sessions in the morning and team practices later. I usually focus on setting into a target so I can get my accuracy down. Other positions split off to focus specifically on what they bring to the court.
After a post recovery shake and a short lift, we eat lunch and take a nap. Adequate rest is crucial to performing at a high level for team practice. Team practice is fun, especially during camp, because we test new lineups and see what people can bring to the table. This portion of practice is key to development of the new freshmen. After practice we shower, eat dinner, and do promotional work. This includes passing out fliers at carnivals, attending pep rallies, and doing booster events.
Although we spend every hour of the day together, the team dynamic is fantastic. This group of girls genuinely cares about each other and genuinely has a fun time together. Our coaches have incorporated fun team bonding experiences throughout camp. We had a team brunch and yoga on Sunday, and every year we compete in an Iron Chef competition. This year half of the team had to make Turkish food and the other had to make Thai food. Other team bonding activities include team dinners and movies.
All in all camp has been a great growing and learning experience for the team, and it gets me pumped for season.