Why Are Volleyball Players So Skinny? (Explained with Stats)

why are volleyball players so skinny

Volleyball players have a uniquely strong physique that I personally like! However, many people think that their anatomy tends to look quite skinny. Indeed …

Volleyball is a sport that involves a ton of exhausting training sessions and all sorts of drills and physical efforts which burn extensive amounts of calories. All this contribute to their anatomy that tends to look skinny in many cases.

In this article, I provide more details explaining the anatomy of volleyball players, as well as what it takes to have a strong physique just like them.

Reasons why volleyball players are usually skinny

To be honest, I wouldn’t say that volleyball players are all tall and skinny! I would rather say that they are long and lean. This is a more accurate description of their physique.

Keep in mind that the average volleyball player is taller than a regular human. The average men and women combined is around 176.5cm, so here is a short answer why volleyball players seem to be skinny, it is because of the height.

But, as I’ve mentioned before, volleyball players are not really skinny, they are long, with arm spans equivalent to an eagle wing span. There is the misconception of volleyball players being skinny and it is widespread.

We can compare the anatomy of volleyball players with the anatomy of basketball players. Basketball players are also long and lean, but more muscular, because of the nature of the sport.

Helpful Tip: If you want to help your body becomes more like volleyball pro players, then you need to help yourself by more practice hours. A great way to do so, is by using this volleyball training equipment aids that will allow to train even if you don’t have an available partner with you.

On the professional court if you look carefully, you can see that there are no skinny players. You will rather notice that they are in top form!

So basically, volleyball players, as any other professional burn calories very quickly, during their exercises, individual or team exercises, they burn calories on the court, basically every day, and on top of that they work their muscles really hard.

We can call them skinny in colloquial terms, but the truth is they are long, lean and in top form.

Does volleyball make you skinny?

The only thing that volleyball can have a strong effect on is your height, especially if you practice it from a young age!

Volleyball, depending on the amount of practice, can give you in the best outcome, a low body fat, muscles and an elongated body if you will, but it depends upon the age of starting the practice.

So No, volleyball does not make you skinny, but practice does, pretty much any kind of practice.

Finally keep in mind that volleyball can really make you strong overall!

What is the ideal weight for a volleyball player?

Nothing can be ideal, not even weight. However the average weight for volleyball players is:

  • For male and female is 72.8kg (160.5 pounds)
  • For males it is 91.1kg (200.8 pounds)
  • For females 69.5kg (153.2 pounds)

The weight needs to be looked at proportionately to the height!

For female players for example, the average height is around 182cm, add the average of 69.5kg and you can easily see the reason for them being skinny or long if you will, hence why they are explosive on the court.

When it comes to the ideal weight for volleyball it is best to stick to the average weight of professional players, or at least keep it around those numbers, but as we have mentioned, try finding balance between those two.

So for females around 69.5kg and for males 91.1kg, just remember to keep it healthy and not to force your weight up or down.

Can you play volleyball with a fat body?

Playing volleyball with a body that exceeds the average weight that we have mentioned, could be possible, but there are couple of things you need to have in mind …

For example a female that weight 75kg (average is 69.5kg), she won’t be impact by the extra weight, hardly at all.

However, if she is 182cm with +90kg than that can be a real problem!

An overweight body is keen on getting tired very quickly, fatigue is the main problem, since the human body is not designed to have a lot of fat stored in it.

Weight can impact your entire body. Overweight people tend to be slower, more clumsy, sweat a lot, and they most of all tend to get tired very quickly.

While playing volleyball, an overweight player can give his maximum, but he will not be able to follow thru the entire game, since fatigue will catch up and he will need some time off.

Professional volleyball players are never overweight, since they, as we have already mentioned, burn a lot of calories and do not give fat the time to pile up!

When we talk about amateur volleyball, overweight players can play for sure, since it is amateur and most of the time recreational volleyball, but they even at a young age cannot hope to start a career while maintaining their overweight body.

You can learn more about the best practices to lose weight for volleyball!

What is the ideal volleyball players diet?

Volleyball players are sportsmen, and they need to eat healthy in order to perform at the best of their ability in the court.

When we talk about food that is recommended for volleyball players, and that is part of the ideal diet, we must point out that the main key is to eat rich and healthy. By rich I mean not to eat junk food, like soft drinks, saturated fats and sugars.

That being said, let us focus on the chemistry. So an ideal diet, off the court is composed out of carefully calculated calories, carbohydrates, lean protein sources, and healthy fat sources, of course there are fruits and vegetables, and drinks, but as we have said, it is best to adapt the diet to your own needs.

During game day, it is recommended to eat one to two hours before the game, not too much of course, but not scarce either. Hydration is a must, also not too much since you do not want to upset the stomach.

After the game is finished, it is best to eat within one hour after the game, in order to regain lost energy. It is best to eat protein and carb foods after the game, so that the muscles can start regenerating.

Final Thoughts …

Hope this article has helped you understand the anatomy of volleyball players. I also hope you’ve learned how you can replicate that for your own needs and trainings.

Again, I do believe the volley players body type is one of the best among all sports and if you manage to have such a body type through volleyball practicing or through general training, then that’s really a very good thing that you should be proud of.

Finally, it is worth mentionning that being skinny also happens to some volleyball players who are running too much!

Carissa Harmer

Carissa Harmer has over 6 years of volleyball experience between playing the sport at a semi-professional level, following the biggest volleyball teams & leagues out there as well as helping beginners to get started on the right path.

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