: F.A.Q,

Q:  How are Teams Formed?  How can I get my kid on a team?

Presently there are no tryouts for AAU teams.  If a player expresses interest in learning to play more competitive volleyball, every effort is made to try and place that player on a team.   There are no guarantees though because AVBA does have to limit membership because of a number of factors.  Having enough gym time available to rent for practices and tournaments is a major concern.   AVBA tries to have two to four teams in each age group with 8 to 9 players on a team.  Too many players on a team will limit court time for all players.  Having too many teams in an age group is also not good.  There are not enough tournaments being held in a given weekend so Ankeny teams just end up playing each other.  Players need to be serious about learning to play volleyball and make a commitment to attend practices and tournaments.

Q: What are some of the similarities and differences between AAU and USA volleyball?

Similarities:
Both programs are under the “umbrella” of the Ankeny Volleyball Association (AVBA), but are separate entities.
Both programs stress teamwork and good sportsmanship.
Both programs are for Ankeny School District residents.
Both programs provide an opportunity for girls to play volleyball outside of the school season.

Differences:
USA teams are formed on a competitive tryout basis (tryouts in October or November).
USA season begins with practices in early December. Tournaments start and run from January through April.  The AAU season is shorter and AAU plays all their tournaments in Iowa.
USA teams travel to several out-of-state tournaments.  AAU volleyball is competitive, but usually the better players move to USA volleyball, as they get older.  College recruiting is done at major USA tournaments

Q:  What do my fees cover?  

The fees paid to AVBA cover AAU membership fees, gym rental for practice and tournaments, tournament entry fees, uniform, insurance, equipment, and supplies.  Parents also help run a concession stand when AVBA hosts tournaments to help raise money to cover expenses.

Q:  What are tournaments like?

Tournaments and teams are based by grades for AAU.  Tournaments are held all over Iowa with teams deciding how many tournaments they want to play in and how far they want to travel.  Tournaments tend to fill up quickly.  Most tournaments have pool play, and then that seeds you for a single-elimination tournament.  The majority of tournaments are on Saturday but some are on Sunday due to gym availability.