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Things to Consider Before Building a Volleyball Court in Your Yard

Volleyball is a great sport for both the physically fit and skilled players or any backyard enthusiast. The beauty of this particular sport is that any and all levels of players can play and compete. Beach volleyball is a fun sport to play at family get-togethers, reunions, block parties, after-school events, and children, teenage, or adult parties. Team sizes and rules can vary depending on how many people and how old players are. If you really want to host some fun parties and have a place to blow off steam, building your own backyard beach volleyball court may be the perfect thing to add to your own backyard. I am going to share with you all that you need to know in order to build your backyard volleyball court, including areas where to consider building your court, suggested size and dimensions, and the equipment that you will need in order to play the game.

Best Places to Build a Volleyball Court

Where you want to build your volleyball court is up to you, but you may want to consider the following ideas:

A Flat Surface

Anywhere there is a flat surface is a great place to build a beach volleyball court. Although you can flatten any hilly places in your yard, it is easier to find an area that is already flat and suitable for a playing area.

An Area with Plenty of Room

You will want to build your volleyball sand court in an area with plenty of room that provides for a large playing area. You will not want to build the volleyball court too close to your home or garage to prevent broken windows or damage to surface structures. Consider placing the court in an area that is away from backyard garden or landscaped areas that you do not want to be damaged by players or too near swingsets or other play equipment that can hurt players or damage equipment. Do not build a volleyball court near your swimming pool where young players can fall and drown. Consider sprinkler areas that may flood the court or interfere with or hurt players. The beach volleyball court dimensions should be approximately 30' x 60' with a recommended 10 feet of clearance around all four sides. Therefore, the entire volleyball area dimensions will be 40' x 70', which is the recommended size of recreational beach volleyball court dimensions.

Do You Want Privacy?

If you want privacy, consider building your volleyball court in an area that is surrounded by trees, your house, or a fence. Many people have built their volleyball court in their backyard, away from the street, where no one can see them. You may want to consider a more private area so that it doesn't attract unwanted people from wandering onto your playing court. Of course, depending on where you build your beach volleyball court depends on where it is placed in the yard. Ideas to consider will be discussed below.

How to Make a DIY Sand Volleyball Court

Now that you have an idea of where to build your volleyball court, it is time to start building. Remember to choose a flat, large area to build with some extra space on the outside of the volleyball court. Now, let's get started on learning how to build your own beach volleyball court.

1. Decide Where You Want to Build It

Start by deciding where you want to build your beach volleyball court. Make sure the space above the volleyball court is free of obstructions like power lines or street lights. I gave you some suggestions earlier, such as building it in a place with privacy and in a place with plenty of room. Before building your beach volleyball court, you will also want to make a volleyball field diagram. A volleyball field diagram will give you an idea of where and how to build your own beach volleyball court. Later in this article, I will guide you on how to draw a volleyball diagram.

2. Begin Digging

Before you begin digging, you may want to call your utility company to determine whether or not there is anything underground in the area that could be damaged during excavation. You will want to dig your volleyball court approximately 1 1/2 to 3 feet deep on the court and approximately 12" in free zone areas using a front-end loader or Bobcat. Use the dirt that you excavate to build up a slight slope on your court, Next, you will need to dig a drainage ditch which leads away from the lowest point of the volleyball court. Lay perforated drainage pipe across the volleyball court, with the perforated side down. The open end should be placed at the low point of the court and open to the drainage ditch. Do not attempt to use corrugated drain pipe, because it will collapse under the weight of the sand. Proper drainage is very important. Sand will retain water which will result in a giant mud puddle if not properly built to drain excess water.

3. Add Pea Gravel

Cover the entire volleyball court with a few inches to a foot of pea gravel which helps with drainage. If you do not want to spend that much money on pea gravel, you could simply purchase enough to spread around the drain pipe. The purpose of the pea gravel is to allow your volleyball court to have proper drainage. It will also help prevent the top layer of sand from clogging the drain pipe.

4. Add Sand

The next step to building a volleyball court is to add sand. You will want to cover the entire volleyball court with a foot or two of sand, depending on the depth you prefer. Most people use approximately 100-300 tons of sand. Make sure the sand is not dusty, or sharp when people fall. You will want to use sand that is not too abrasive. Check the sand when it is wet and dry by kneeling down on it. You will probably not want to use washed masonry sand or golf course bunker sand because it is too dusty. Whatever you choose, make sure it is the right sand for you because once it's placed in your beach volleyball court, sand is very costly to return, especially if you pay someone else to haul it away. Use a large rake to level the sand on your playing court.

5.  Add the Poles

Now it is time to add the poles. The poles are what will hold the net up. Each pole should be made of stainless steel, anodized aluminum, galvanized steel, or treated wood. If you are using wood poles, the volleyball pole measurement should be 6’ x 6’. The poles should be 10.5-16 feet long and cemented into a concrete footing measuring at least 1 foot in diameter and 3 feet deep. The volleyball pole to pole distance should be the width of the volleyball court.

6. Attach the Net

The official measurements of a volleyball net are 32 feet long by 39 inches tall. You will want the net to hang directly in the center of the playing court so that it divides the volleyball court exactly in half. Therefore, make sure you dig the holes ahead of time in the correct place. Also, slide the floor plates that come with your volleyball net through the poles. Attach the net to the poles, and you are ready to play volleyball.

Volleyball Court Dimensions

After learning how to build a volleyball court, you may still be wondering, "What are the dimensions of a volleyball court?" Volleyball court dimensions can vary, depending on who is playing the game. The regulation volleyball court size, which is the official volleyball court size, must be at least 52’6” by 26’3”. The exact volleyball court dimensions will vary depending on if it is for competition and what age is playing the game. If you are younger, you would need the net to be lower. Unlike the regulation volleyball court size, high school volleyball court dimensions can be slightly different in size. Most sand volleyball court dimensions are 26.2 ft × 52.5 ft. For your own backyard volleyball court, the volleyball court size should measure about 40' x 70'. That would mean that the volleyball court length would be 70 feet. Remember that how high you hang the net will depend on who is playing.

How High to Hang the Net

Hanging a volleyball net is not as hard as you may think. Here’s how to do it:

1. Remove the Floor Plates with an Allen Wrench

Most volleyball nets have floor plates that secure them to the ground. Use an Allen wrench to loosen the floor plates.

2. Slide the Floor Plates Through the Poles

Slide the floor plates through the poles. This will help keep your poles in place.

3. Tie the Net to the Poles

Next, tie a knot to each side of the net rope to the post hook on your pole, and thread the rope through the winch leader strap, a strap with a metal connector that hangs on the volleyball pole's side. Tighten the winch so that the net reaches the desired height.

4. Tighten the Net Straps

Your volleyball net should come with net straps. Grab the net straps and secure them onto your post hooks. Continue pulling on it until your net is tight.

5. Tie Extra Rope to the Poles

If you have extra rope that you didn't use, tie it to the poles. Make sure you don't tie it so tight that it is hard to untie.

Estimated Cost

The cost to build a sand volleyball court will depend on what materials you use and where you purchase those materials. Below is an estimated cost:

  • Volleyball net - A couple hundred dollars. Some may cost as high as $1,000, depending on the quality of the net.
  • Sand - You will need about 166 tons of sand. You may be able to find sand for $14 per ton, but sand costs may vary depending on where you live. Approximate sand costs would be $2,324.
  • Poles - The cost of poles will depend on where you purchase them. You may be able to find poles that are included with the purchase of the net. It will cost approximately $1,000 to buy the full kit.
  • Perforated drainage pipe - This should cost under $100.
  • Pea gravel - Pea gravel will cost approximately $40 per ton. You will need to measure how much pea gravel you need for your volleyball court. Pea gravel costs will vary depending on whether you use pea gravel only around the drainage pipes or whether you cover the entire volleyball court.
  • Volleyball - The volleyball itself should cost under $20.

How to Draw a Volleyball Diagram

At first glance, a volleyball diagram may seem very confusing. But once you know how to draw a volleyball diagram, you may be surprised at how easy the process is. Start by deciding where you want to build your volleyball court. Once you have decided, draw the volleyball court in that area. Make sure to write down the dimensions of the area, so that you know how much space you have in your playing area. A volleyball court diagram should show the entire court. Make sure you draw the diagram without leaving anything out. Label where the poles will go, where the boundary lines will be, including the back line and sideline and where the free zones are. Also, add the volleyball net to the diagram. It may be helpful to label how long the net is and what height it should be hung. Remember, you may need to draw the diagram several times before you get it right. That is completely fine. It is important that you get the diagram right so you don’t make any mistakes when purchasing the materials to build your volleyball court.

Photo Credit: Conquest

How Old Is Volleyball?

Volleyball was invented in 1895. It is actually a mixture of basketball, baseball, handball, and tennis. The first rules, written down by William G. Morgan, called for a net placed 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m) high and a 25 ft × 50 ft (7.6 m × 15.2 m) court, and any number of players. Later on, new rules developed. The original game was actually spelled using two words (volley ball), but later on, the words were joined together.

Conclusion

I hope that this “how to article” has motivated and equipped you to build your own volleyball court in your backyard. It is not hard, but it will require a little money and muscle power to get the job done. Just think how much fun that you and your family and friends will have this summer and fall playing volleyball in your very own backyard. Your home will be the perfect place to host parties and a fun place for your family and friends to play.

Mariann Foster

I am one of our content writers for Everything Backyard. I am a mother and business owner of Big Horn Mountain Alpacas in Wyoming. I love farm life, cutting my own firewood in the mountains, and participating in local trail run races.

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