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  • Writer's pictureCompression Athlete

Your Complete Volleyball Checklist for 2023

All your apparel, equipment, and recovery needs for the upcoming season.

Volleyball players during season competition.

As the volleyball season approaches, preparation will be your key to success.


One part of this preparation is, of course, the physical aspect.


Volleyball is a demanding sport that can throw a lot at you: attacking, blocking, setting, serving, jumping, diving, and more.


There’s plenty of action happening on the volleyball court. Putting the time into your training and practice regime will help ensure you’re ready for it.


But the other part of your preparation is making sure you have all the essential gear that the game requires.


Consider the high levels of focus required of volleyball players: constant teammate communication, anticipating attacks, accurate ball placement and control.


There’s no way you can do this at a high level if your gear is uncomfortable and causing distractions, or inadequate and holding back your performance.


Here, we’ve put together a complete checklist for the upcoming volleyball season, including our top picks in each category to help you reach your peak level of play.


Whether you’re new to the game and looking for the right place to get started or a seasoned vet in need of a few updates or upgrades, we’ve got you covered.



Note: Featured products are independently selected and reviewed by Compression Athlete. If you purchase through our links, we may earn commission.



Full Volleyball Apparel Checklist 2023


Whether you’re a libero focused on passing, covering, and all the little things or you’re an outside hitter tasked with attacking and defending, you’re going to need apparel that can keep up and hold up.


Volleyball players in a team huddle.

Ill-suited athletic shoes could lead to injury and an inferior pair of compression shorts inevitably leads to constant adjustment and distraction.


Comfort, mobility, and support is crucial on the court. These are the top volleyball apparel picks that provide it.



1. Volleyball Shorts: Under Armour Team Shorty Shorts


All volleyball players know just how much movement the game requires.


And if you have an inferior pair of volleyball shorts, you’ll notice just how quickly they can drag your game down with annoying irritation and constant adjustment.


You need a pair that will stay in place, reduce roll along the legs and waistband, and offer support, comfort, and mobility.


And let’s not forget that other crucial factor, you need shorts with high-quality fabric that aren’t see-through so that there’s never an “oops” moment.


Our top pick for the best volleyball shorts this season are the Under Armour Team Shorty Shorts.


Volleyball player wearing Under Armour Team Shorty Shorts.

Shop at Under Armour: UA Team Shorty 3" and UA Team Shorty 4"

Available on Amazon: UA Team Shorty 3" and UA Team Shorty 4"


The Under Armour Team Shorty Shorts have a sleek and athletic look that performs great and features soft and breathable sweat-wicking material to keep you dry.


These volleyball shorts are available in both 3-inch and 4-inch lengths and have a wide, low-rise waistband for great coverage and support.


Check out our full list of the Best Volleyball Shorts for 2023. And grab a few pairs for your upcoming season.



2. Volleyball Sports Bra: Nike Swoosh Sports Bra


In volleyball, players need to be ready for just about anything. It’s a sport that requires quick reactions, plenty of agility, and a versatile skillset.


Having the right sports bra is essential to ensure that players stay focused and perform their best on the court.


The best type of sports bra for volleyball will depend on your preferences and cup size, though a medium-impact to high-impact sports bra is the popular choice.


Our top pick for volleyball sports bras this season is the Nike Swoosh Sports Bra.


Volleyball player wearing Nike Swoosh Sports Bra.

Shop at Nike: Nike Swoosh Sports Bra


The Nike Swoosh Sports Bra features a classic non padded design with wide stabilizing straps and extra smooth fabric.


This sports bra has a racerback design, an exposed elastic band that stays comfortably in place, and sweat-wicking Dri-FIT technology.


Check out our full list of the Best Sports Bras for Volleyball 2023.



3. Volleyball Shoes: Adidas Crazyflight Mid Volleyball Shoes


Volleyball shoes are specifically designed to assist and boost the lateral and vertical movements you make on the court, while also offering support and stability to prevent injury.


Impact cushioning, upper ankle support, and rubber soles for traction, are all typical features of a quality volleyball shoe to assist your movement and protect your body.


Seeing as how injury to feet and ankles is a primary concern in volleyball, shoes that can reduce slippage, cushion jumps, and stabilize the foot and ankle will keep you in top form on the court.


Our top pick for volleyball shoes this season are the Adidas Crazyflight Mid Volleyball Shoes.


Adidas Crazyflight Mid Volleyball Shoes

Shop at Dick’s Sporting Goods: Adidas Crazyflight Mid Volleyball Shoes


The Adidas Crazyflight Mid Volleyball Shoes feature a unique energy-returning Boost Midsole that provides ignition for jumps and cushion for landings.


These volleyball shoes have an ankle-hugging mid-cut design that provides a stable platform for twisting, turning, and lateral movements.


Check out our full list of the Best Volleyball Shoes for 2023.



Optional Volleyball Apparel Picks


Beyond the essentials, there are a few other apparel options that can be helpful to have.


While most any pair of athletic socks will work fine when playing volleyball, athletic crew socks tend to be the most popular choice among volleyball players.


Our top pick for volleyball socks this season are the Under Armour Team Crew Socks.


The Under Armour Team Crew Socks provide medium cushioning with embedded arch support to reduce foot fatigue and mesh panels for breathability.


These volleyball socks are sweat-wicking, quick-drying, and available in multiple team color options.


Also, depending on what your team wears for practice, a volleyball jersey is a great top to have when you’re training.


Our top pick for volleyball jerseys this season is the Adidas HILO Jersey.


Volleyball player wearing Adidas HILO Jersey.


The Adidas HILO Jersey features stretchy fabric with moisture-wicking AEROREADY technology to keep you dry and comfortable.


This volleyball jersey is available in both short and long sleeve, as well as 4 classic color options.



Full Volleyball Equipment & Accessories Checklist 2023


With a high-flying, hard-diving court sport like volleyball, having the right equipment and accessories is crucial to ensuring you stay competitive and injury-free.


You’ll need protective equipment that lives up to its name, so that you can make plays and give your all without holding back.


Volleyball players wearing protective equipment.

Durable knee pads are a must for any volleyball player, while passing sleeves, ankle braces, and athletic tape are also commonplace.


And don’t forget those uncelebrated accessories that keep you focused and playing hard.


These are the top volleyball equipment and accessories picks that get the job done and then some.



1. Volleyball Knee Pads: Adidas Elite Volleyball Knee Pads


From high-flying spikes to low-diving digs, it’s no surprise that volleyball players opt to wear knee pads for protection.


A great pair of volleyball knee pads will be comfortable to wear, won’t require constant adjustment, and won’t cause any irritation or chaffing.


You’ll need a pair that’s durable and can take a beating while still offering you a full range of motion to compete at your highest level.


Our top pick for volleyball knee pads this season are the Adidas Elite Volleyball Knee Pads.


Adidas Elite Volleyball Knee Pads

Available on Amazon: Adidas Elite Volleyball Knee Pads


The Adidas Elite Volleyball Knee Pads feature anatomical flex zones that comfortably fit the contours of your knee and flex with you as you move.


These knee pads have thick padding to cushion impact and a full coverage sleeve height.


Check out our full list of the Best Volleyball Knee Pads for 2023.



2. Volleyball Passing Sleeves: Mizuno Padded Sleeves


For the defensive-focused players out there doing all the diving, digging, lunging, and passing, padded passing sleeves are a great option for extra confidence and protection.


Passing sleeves utilize durable moisture-wicking compression material that helps to take the sting out of ball impact, while the padding protects your elbows from contact with the court.


Our top pick for volleyball passing sleeves this season is Mizuno Padded Sleeves.


Volleyball player wearing Mizuno Padded Sleeves.

Shop at Mizuno: Mizuno Padded Sleeves

Available on Amazon: Mizuno Padded Sleeves


The Mizuno Padded Sleeves feature breathable and stretchy fabric with molded elbow pad protection available in 3 classic colors.



3. Volleyball Shoe Insoles: Move Game Day Pro Performance Insoles

 

Whether you’re experiencing some form of pain while you’re moving on the court (arch, ankle, knee, etc.) or simply looking for a performance boost, adding insoles to your volleyball shoes might be just what you need.

 

A high-quality pair of volleyball insoles will improve energy transfer in your feet for quicker reactions and higher verticals.

 

And they’ll also increase support and reduce strain on your feet, which in turn reduces your risk for injury and limits wear and tear on your joints.

 

Our top pick for volleyball shoe insoles this season is the Move Game Day Pro Performance Insoles.


Athlete using Move Game Day Pro Performance Insoles.


The Move Game Day Pro Performance Insoles feature an incredibly dynamic performance design that pairs a firm and bouncy foundation for take-offs with comfortable cushioning for soft landings.

 

Used by Jasmine Gross, Skylar Fields, and more, these insoles sport a signature Pro Base with a carbon-like composite for strong and adaptive movements and Active Heel Technology to reduce pressure where it’s needed most.


Check out our full list of the Best Insoles for Volleyball Shoes.



4. Volleyball Ankle Braces: McDavid & Shock Doctor


With all the quick movements, turns, jumps, etc. that occur on the court, ankle braces are a common must-have item for many volleyball players.


Whether you currently have an ankle sprain or are hoping to fend them off, an ankle brace is a great way to both prevent and help recover from ankle sprains.


You’ll want an ankle brace that offers medial and lateral stability without adding bulk or hindering flexibility.


Our top picks for volleyball ankle braces this season are the McDavid Phantom Ankle Brace and Shock Doctor Ultra Ankle Brace.


McDavid Phantom Ankle Brace and Shock Doctor Ultra Ankle Brace

Shop at McDavid: McDavid Phantom Ankle Brace

Shop at Shock Doctor: Shock Doctor Ultra Ankle Brace


Both ankle brace options offer comfortable and supportive lace-free designs with lightweight and low-profile fits that work great with volleyball shoes.


The McDavid Pantom Ankle Brace offers advanced strapping with flex-support stirrup stays and non-slip straps ideal for volleyball.


And the Shock Doctor Ultra Ankle Brace provides a figure-8 and vertical tension stirrup strap design for maximum support and advanced stability.



5. Volleyball Athletic Tape: KT Tape


Here’s something that volleyball players will be glad they have in their bag: kinesiology tape.


A versatile option that’s great for minor injuries and pain, kinesiology tape can be applied nearly anywhere on the body to help alleviate muscle swelling, promote circulation, and maintain joint functionality.


Our top pick for volleyball athletic tape this season is KT Tape PRO Kinesiology Tape.


KT Tape PRO Kinesiology Tape


KT Tape’s PRO Kinesiology Tape is highly breathable, offers flexible support, and remains firmly on skin through sweat and moisture.



Optional Volleyball Equipment & Accessories Picks


There are a few other accessories that volleyball players may need depending on what’s provided by their team or based on their own preferences.


Many volleyball players like a secure and comfortable way to keep hair and sweat out of their face and eyes, opting to wear an athletic headband during play.


Our top pick for volleyball headbands this season are the Under Armour Adjustable Mini Headbands and Under Armour Tie Headband.


And you are going to do lots of sweating over the course of this season, so you’re going to want to stay hydrated throughout.


The best way to do that is by making sure you have a water bottle that you actually like and enjoy having with you.


Our top pick for a volleyball water bottle this season is the Lululemon Back to Life Sport Bottle.


The Lululemon Back to Life Sport Bottle features a vacuum insulated design to keep drinks cold with a slip-free powder coated texture and easy-open leak-proof lid.


Looking to shake the rust off leading up to the season or continue working on your game outside of team practice?


You’re going to need a quality practice ball and ball pump.


Our top pick for a volleyball practice ball this season is the Molton L2 Indoor Volleyball, perfect for indoor practice and play.


And our top pick for a volleyball ball pump this season is the convenient and compact Nike Essential Ball Pump.


Molton L2 Indoor Volleyballs and Nike Essential Ball Pumps.

Shop at Dick’s Sporting Goods: Molton L2 Indoor Volleyball

Shop at Dick’s Sporting Goods: Nike Essential Ball Pump


Finally, if your team doesn’t provide one, you’re going to need a way to stash and transport all of your apparel, equipment, and accessories this season.


Of course, we’re talking about an equipment bag and our top pick for a volleyball equipment bag this season is the Adidas Alliance II Pack.


The Adidas Alliance II Pack is convenient, secure, and available in multiple stylish designs.



Full Volleyball Recovery Checklist 2023


Sore muscles are an unfortunate reality for any athlete, volleyball players no exception.


And while there’s no silver bullet that offers instant relief, there are a few methods and tools at our disposal nowadays that we know work well at reducing muscle soreness and improving recovery time.


Volleyball players celebrating.

Over the course of a long season with all those grueling practices and high-energy games, these recovery tools might just become your new best friend.



1. Volleyball Massage Gun: Hypervolt Go 2


You’ve no doubt seen these all over recently. Just turn on any professional sporting event and you’ll see athletes on the sidelines working their muscles over with massage guns.


But massage guns aren’t just for professional athletes. They’re an effective and easy-to-use tool for any active individual.


And athletes that incorporate percussion therapy into their warm-up and recovery routines feel fresher from one workout or game to the next, while also noticing a bump in overall flexibility and mobility.


Our top pick for the best massage gun for volleyball players is the Hypervolt Go 2.


Athlete using the Hypervolt Go 2 massage gun.

Available on Amazon: Hypervolt Go 2


The Hypervolt Go 2 has a perfect handheld ergonomic design that’s extra lightweight (only 1.5 pounds), portable, and very easy to use.


This massage gun feature QuietGlide technology for nearly silent use, 3 powerful percussion speed, and 3 hours of batter life per charge.


Check out our full list of the Best Massage Guns for Athletes 2023.



2. Volleyball Foam Roller: TriggerPoint GRID


Over the course of just a single volleyball game, your body can be put through a wide-range of motion and demand.


Many athletes look to foam rollers as a way to alleviate muscle soreness, tightness, and inflammation.


Our top pick for the best foam roller for volleyball players is the TriggerPoint GRID.


Athlete using TriggerPoint GRID Foam Roller.

Available on Amazon: TriggerPoint GRID Foam Roller


The TriggerPoint GRID Foam Roller is one of the most popular foam rollers available and was first to utilize a firm, hollow core for improved effectiveness.


Sports doctors, physical therapists, and chiropractors recommend the GRID Foam Roller for releasing muscle pain and tightness, as well as improving flexibility and circulation.

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