Inspirational Female Volleyball Players Stories 

Female players provide motivation with their stories, be inspired!

There are many famous American female volleyball players in the

history of the sport.

I was fortunate to play with and against and to be taught and

coached by quite a few of these players in my college, beach

and professional career.

What I want to do on this site is to share with you information, from the

most inspirational players  to play the sport.

Why is it important to learn from other female volleyball players


Female Volleyball Player Courtney Thompson, star of
the movie "Court & Spark"

One of the best ways to be and to stay motivated to excel at this sport

is to learn from the experiences, stories and even the mistakes

learned by some of the champion female players who competed

and excelled before you did.

Whether it's something they say about the way they train, the way

they think, what they eat or how they explain who their heroes were

and what motivates them, we can learn from the habits of the world

class, inspirational female players that played and continue to

play and coach the game.

As athletes, we learn things in many different ways.

By spending hours in a gym with a coach, we hear  them explain to

us how to perform a specific drill over and over again.

But sometimes, really understanding how our coach wants us to

perform that drill really comes across to us if someone else

explains it in their words, in a different way.

This happens all the time.

One person may tell us how to do something one way and we

may not fully understand what they are trying to say.

But when another person says it using different words,

a different tone of voice or even communicates with us during a

different time of day then for some reason we can understand what

they are saying right away.

That's the moment when we respond with the famous "Ohhh so THAT is

what you were trying to say."

Hopefully, by listening and reading about some of the lessons these

champion players learned in their lives their information may

help you learn the lessons and tips you need to understand in order to

perform well during your volleyball drills, practices, games, tournaments

and competitions.

Once upon a time...

When I was playing volleyball professionally, I decided to ask

female players who were my teammates, friends and coaches

to write their own stories of the greatest personal obstacles  they had

to overcome as teens or young female adults in club, high school or

even college.

Collegiate female volleyball players: Fighting Illini Celebrates In Their Team HuddleCollegiate female volleyball players: Fighting Illini Celebrates In Their Team Huddle

I asked them to describe how that particular obstacle helped or

motivated or inspired them to become the professional players

or Olympic players they had become.

Here is a list of questions these female volleyball players chose

to answer and share in their stories:

  • Did the obstacle help you grow emotionally? If so, how?
  • How did it make you stronger (or not?)

Iowa State female volleyball playersIowa State female volleyball players

The players chose one of the following topics that they

personally experienced and described it in their story:

Body image

Were you ever told you were too tall or too short to play volleyball?

Did you have a coach or player tell you that you were too big or too

small to be on the court?

Have you dealt with eating disorders like taking pills, binging or


Click here to read Debbie Green's story about having to work harder than other players since she was always the shortest player on the court.


Have you been the first female volleyball players and/or only person

of your race on your club or high school team?

Were you ever told that you wouldn't be good at a particular skill in

volleyball because people of your race usually weren't that good at

doing that skill?

Click here to read Kim Oden's story about being the tallest player on most of her teams and how she was challenged by a person at Stanford who felt she wasn't smart enough to finish school there. 


Have you had to overcome poverty or economic hardship in order to

play and excel the sport that you love?


Have you had to overcome homelessness, or alcoholism personally or

in your family in order to play, enjoy or excel at volleyball?

Have you had to overcome feeling isolated or were you treated as an

outcast because you decided to be one of the best female volleyball

players in your hometown to play or compete at a higher level in this


Click here to read Mary Jo Peppler's story on how she had to practice and train with very little of her family's support once she announced her plans to play Olympic volleyball.


Has playing volleyball helped you to overcome depression or a poor

self image?

How did you feel about yourself before you played the sport and how

has it helped you gain confidence in who you are and how you carry

yourself on and off the court? What other female volleyball players

helped you along your journey?

Click here to read Heather Bown's story about how she had

to prove herself worthy of being on the court.

First to herself and then to others and how her journey helped

her build her self confidence.


Have you had to overcome physical issues, birth defects or abuse?

Has the physical requirements of this sport helped you to overcome

any disabilities you were born with?

Click here to read April Chapple's story of an early childhood spent having to wear leg braces helped form her decision to play and grow in the sport. 


Has playing volleyball helped you deal with divorce in your family, or

have you had to deal with being raised by a single parent or

sibling rivalry and how did that affect your attitude towards playing

the game?

Click here to read Liz Masakayan's story about how growing up in a single parent household affected how she dealt with teammates, how she trained and the lessons she learned about herself.

Olympian Liz Masakayan at the Las Vegas Volleyball Voice Boot Camp Class Summer 2017.Olympian Liz Masakayan at the Las Vegas Volleyball Voice Boot Camp Class Summer 2017.

Inspiring Volleyball Stories

Follow Elaina Oden's story of her journey to accept that

despite not having the physique of the "typical" volleyball

playershe was determined to be an Olympian.

E.O Learned How To Be A Good Volleyball Player

Elaina Oden

Elaina's older sister, two-time Olympic team captain Kim Oden

was always the tallest player on her team, until she made the

Olympic team, then things changed.

The Tallest Volleyball Player On The Team

Kim Oden

Despite having dreams to play in the Olympics, Debbie Green Vargas

spent hours in the gym because she had to improve her setting

skills since she was always the shortest girl on her team. 

The Shortest Volleyball Player On The Court

Debbie Green Vargas

Olympian and beach volleyball legend Liz Masakayan was raised in

single parent household.

She felt that led to her compulsion to overtrain

and overperform in order to get her teammates and others to like her.

Are you guilty of doing the right thing for the wrong reasons?

I Learned How To Be A Better Volleyball Player

Liz Masakayan

Not all families members may be happy when you tell them that you

want to play in the Olympics. Mary Jo Peppler told her family and

was kicked out. Read how she handled the situation in 

The First Volleyball Player America Had To Respect

Mary Jo Peppler

Nina Matthies worked hard to accomplish her goals. The founder of the

Women's Pro beach Volleyball Association, the first womens beach

volleyball tour admitted that she had very few obstacles to overcome. 

Famous Beach Volleyball Player

Nina Matthies

The first American Olympic women's volleyball team to win a

silver medal did so at the Los Angeles, California Olympiad in 1984.

One of three black females on the team and to this day still considered

the best female volleyball player ever was 6' 5" Flo Hyman, born in

Inglewood, California.

The Most Famous Volleyball Player

Flo Hyman

Olympian Rose Magers was a teammate of Flo's and played on

the 1984 silver medal winning American women's team as well.

In 2007, USA Volleyball awarded the "All Time Greatest Player Award" to

Rose at the USAV Nationals. Read her story as told by her friend, coach

and mentor, Ruth Nelson.

Famous Female Volleyball Player

Rose Magers

In many situations when growing up, Laurel Brassey Iversen played

with and against and was surrounded by boys her age.

She had to learn

how to outplay them and how to compete against them. She did.

She did it so well that during her career she played on many men's


The Girl Who Got Better Than The Boys: 

Laurel Brassey Iversen

Pro volleyball player, April Chapple had to overcome several 

physical obstacles before being able to pursue her goals of making

the US National Team, earning a college scholarship and playing

professionally in Italy.

I Learned How To Become A Pro Volleyball Player:

April Chapple

Read The Inspirational Female Volleyball Players Stories That Our Visitors Have Submitted, Then Submit Yours!

Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page...

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LOS ANGELES -- Last Friday, the USC women's volleyball team spent time with local children at the Stuart M. Ketchum Downtown YMCA in Los Angeles. The …

Kansas Volleyball Senior Karina Garlington Earns Marlene Marson Award Not rated yet

LAWRENCE, Kan. Kansas volleyball senior Karina Garlington has been named the recipient of this year?s Marlene Mawson Female Athlete of the Year award, …

Carmichael’s Unlikely Hero  Not rated yet

LAWRENCE, Kan. - It was the call Catherine Carmichael’s mom, Janelle, had hoped she would never get again, let alone on the way home from holiday shopping …

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The Weekly Award-winning Las Vegas Boot Camp Volleyball Class Schedule

  • Monday Volleyball Class (ages 11 - 14) - Stupak Community Center 6 - 7:30
  • Tuesday Volleyball Class (ages 13 - 18) - Mirabelli Community Center 6 - 7:30
  • Wednesday Advanced/Varsity Only Class - Chuck Minker Sports Complex - 4:30 - 6pm - Contact Coach April first before coming if you've never been
  • Thursday Volleyball Class (ages 13 - 18) - Stupak Community Ctr. 6 - 7:30
  • Friday Advanced/Varsity Only Skill Clinics (ages 13 - 18) - Veteran's Memorial Summerlin - 5pm - 6pm - Contact Coach April before coming first if you've never been 
  • Friday Volleyball Class (ages 9 - 13) - Veteran's Memorial Leisure Services 6 - 7:30

Boot Camp Volleyball Class Requirements

  • No online registration for Volleyball Voice Boot Camp classes
  • Arrive 15-20 minutes before class begins
  • Pay $10 at front desk
  • Kneepads mandatory
  • Classes close at 6:05, latecomers will not be admitted
  • You WILL sweat

Monthly Monday 
Advanced Training 

Breakfast Club 60

About Breakfast Club 60

  • Four Mondays 4pm - 5pm
  • 60 minute intense Training
  • Class Max 12 - Coed
  • Ages 14 - 18
  • No Beginners
  • Varsity/Adv/Elite Skill level
  • Breakfast Club/USAVHP
  • Registration is Open
  • Stupak Community Ctr 
  • Pay $195 for a four class pack Breakfast Club 60 
  • Pay $195 late registration (1-3 Mondays)

Elite training for very advanced hard working players who INTEND to play volleyball in college.

Exclusive opportunity to train with teammates/friends with similar high goals and are ready to push YOU and themselves to improve. 

Not for the curious, weak hearted or distracted player, we do more in 60 minutes than most clubs and teams do in three hours. 

If you’ve never attended a Breakfast Club class contact Coach April BEFORE registering.

Brunch Club 60

About Brunch Club 60

  • Four Mondays 5pm - 6pm
  • 60 minute intensive Training
  • Class Max 12 - Coed
  • Ages 13 - 15
  • No Beginners
  • Intermediate Skill level
  • Registration is Open
  • Stupak Community Ctr 
  • Pay $195 for a four class pack Breakfast Club 60 
  • Pay $195 late registration (1-3 Mondays)

Perfect for regular Boot Camp class players and players who've ALREADY played on a City of Las Vegas/NYS Elite local league team and who're interested in more advanced training and/or trying out for the Volleycats Elite 14s/15s/ local team competing in June/July/August. 

Private and Semi Private Lessons with Coach April
Tuesdays and Thursdays

Ten (10) - intensive 60-minute sessions of semi-private (small groups of six) volleyball practices 

Sessions are a specially designed mix of skills conducted by Coach April within the one hour session

  • Private training class pack is $1050 for 10 classes. This includes gym rental fee 
  • Semi-private training class pack is $850 for 10 classes. This includes gym rental fee