Spiking Your Brain Health: The Neurological Power of Volleyball

I recently attended the 2023 USA National Girls Volleyball Tournament. My experience playing competitive volleyball reinforces research demonstrating that playing volleyball has not only physical benefits, but also neurological benefits that can help improve brain function on and off the court.


7/14/20231 min read

I'm a 15-year-old girl who's been playing volleyball since I was 11 years old. I've always loved the sport, but I never realized how much it was benefiting my brain until I read a recent study published in PubMed Central.

Stepping onto the court at the volleyball nationals is an exhilarating experience for any athlete, and I am eternally grateful for the opportunity I was given. The journey to this prestigious event requires unwavering commitment, countless hours of practice, and a passion for the sport. Walking around the McCormick Center, I witnessed volleyball at the highest level, athletes swinging their hardest knowing a college scout was watching them. Yes, volleyball may open the gates for many student-athletes to go to college, but what many don’t realize is the profound impact it also has on the performance of your brain. A recent study published in the PubMed Central journal found that participation in sports can have a number of benefits for the brain, including:

· Increased cognitive function

· Improved memory

· Enhanced problem-solving skills

· Reduced stress levels

· Increased self-esteem

These benefits can transfer past the court to other aspects of life.

Additionally, the friendships and team dynamics fostered during the tournament contributed to the optimization of brain performance. The collaborative nature of the sport required effective communication, coordination, and cooperation. The NCBI research emphasizes the positive impact of social interactions on brain health, underscoring how teamwork and support from teammates can enhance cognitive function and overall mental well-being.

Participating in the US National Girls Volleyball Tournament this year not only amplified my physical capabilities, but also transformed my brain’s performance, so I encourage other young women to get involved in sports to reap these same benefits. I'm grateful for the opportunity to compete in this tournament, and I'm confident it will be a positive experience for me both on and off the court. I'm excited to see how it will benefit my brain and help me to grow as a person.

Source: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3590639/