History of Volleyball


William G. Morgan, Inventor of Volleyball in Holyoke, MA. He developed a new game from his own sports training methods and his practical experience in the YMCA gymnasium


USA Volleyball is the National Governing Body (NGB) for the sport of volleyball in the United States and is recognized as such by the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) and the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC).


International Olympic Committee (IOC) the governing body for all countries that participate in the Olympics. Volleyball become an Official sport where Japan Women won the first Olympic Gold Medal. The Olympics were held in Tokyo, Japan.


The Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (AIAW) was founded in 1971 to govern collegiate women’s athletics in the United States and to administer national championships (see AIAW Champions). It evolved out of the Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (founded in 1967). The association was one of the biggest advancements for women’s athletics on the collegiate level. Throughout the 1970s, the AIAW grew rapidly in membership and influence, in parallel with the national growth of women’s sports following the enactment of Title IX. The AIAW functioned in the equivalent role for college women’s programs that the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) had been doing for men’s programs. Owing to its own success, the AIAW was in a vulnerable position that precipitated conflicts with the NCAA in the early 1980s. Following a one-year overlap in which both organizations staged women’s championships, the AIAW discontinued operation, and most member schools continued their women’s athletics programs under the governance of the NCAA.

 The AIAW developed from the CIAW in recognition of the need for institutional membership and elected representation. Formation of the AIAW was approved by the DGWS Council and the AAHPER Board of Directors in 1971, but the CIAW continued to operate until early 1972, at which time the AIAW officially came into existence, with over 280 schools as members. (cited from Wikipedia)

 (cited from Wikipedia)


In 1972, the United States Congress passed Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972. Although the impact today is primarily discussed in terms of the impact on athletics, the bill made no explicit mention of athletics. The bill provided that neither men nor women could “be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance”. The task of issuing regulations fell to the Department of Health, Education and Welfare (HEW). One of its early decisions was that athletic programs would indeed be subject to the requirements of the law. The effect was to require the creation of new women’s teams instead of stipulating that women could simply try out for men’s teams. Consequently, the regulations required colleges to provide equal opportunities for both genders in collegiate athletics. Any school that received federal funds was required to provide gender equality by the 1978-79 school year. (cited from Wikipedia)


NART™ (Nelson Aquatic Resistance Training) began in 1973 during the pre-season, regular season and extended through the off-season. The water resistance program was designed to progressively overload the same physical movements on land but performed in the water. In addition, the attempt was made to maintain the majority of exercises performed underwater to prevent muscle soreness.

This program has certified instructors all of the United States providing great success.  In 1979 Mary assumed a graduate assistantship at Lamar University where she designed and conducted a study for her Master’s thesis, “A Comparison of Swimming Pool Vertical Jump Training with Weight Vertical jump Training, and Their Effects on Vertical Jumping Ability.” The result of the study was that the increase in jumping ability from the jump-training program in the swimming pool was higher than weight training on land…confirming that water resistance training yielded more gains beyond an increase in jumping ability.


In 1974 colleges started giving scholarships to female student-athletes.That year (aside from the exceptional Wayland College basketball team in the 1950s), Flo Hyman became the first female to receive a full volleyball scholarship by committing to play for University of Houston on Legendary Coach Ruth N. Nelson. Title IX is credited with the vast improvement in funding for women’s athletics. (cited from Wikipedia)


Dr. Arie Selinger, Marilyn McReavy, Mary Jo Peppler and the City of Pasadena, Texas becomes the first men’s or women’s national team training center with a full-time coach and the support of Bob Lindsey, Wichita Falls Oil Field Owner. This was the first time in history for any USA National team to train full time all-year round.


In 1978, the committee incorporated as Holyoke Volleyball Hall of Fame, Inc., a nonprofit corporation established for the purpose of planning, promoting, establishing and maintaining a living memorial to the sport of volleyball. The Volleyball Hall of Fame, at 444 Dwight St. in Holyoke opened to the public on June 6, 1987. A two-day volleyball tournament was hosted by the Volleyball Hall of Fame to celebrate the grand opening.


The 1980 Summer Olympics boycott was one part of a number of actions initiated by the United States to protest the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.The Soviet Union, which hosted the 1980 Summer Olympics, and its allies would later boycott the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. The USA Women were prepared and had trained for 5 years and were picked to win the GOLD Medal under the direction of Dr. Arie Selinger.


Nelson becomes Director of Volleyball at Special Olympics International and is part of hosting the first International Special Olympics Games in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.


In 1984 Olympics Games the USA Women win the first ever medal (silver) playing against the powerful Chinese Team lead by the “Iron Hammer”. This team was a favorite behind the power of Flo Hyman, Debbie, Rita Crockett, Rose Magers, Paula Weishoff and a team of highly trained players under the legendary coach Arie Selinger.  The USA Men win the Gold with a talented group of men


Louisiana Volleyball Club  (LVC) is a 501c3 non-profit organization started in 1985 by Ruth N. Nelson in order to provide athletes an opportunity to improve their skills in order to reach a level of excellence whereby they could receive a college athletic scholarship to fund their higher education. Ms Nelson is a former USA National Volleyball team member and coach with over 50 years of collegiate, national, international, and professional volleyball coaching experience. During her career, she has coaches three of the top volleyball players in the world while at University of Hosuton (Rose Magers, Rita Crockett and the late Flo Hyman) and 5-time Olympian Danielle Scott in her junior club while in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.


In 1986 the premier legendary Olympic Silver Medallist dies during a match while she was playing for Daiei Department Professional Volleyball Team in Osaka, Japan. Thanks to Daiei for creating three beautiful statues one that is in Colorado Spring at USAV Office, International Hall of Fame in Holyoke, MA and one in Japan.


Beach Volleyball became an official sport at the Atlanta Olympics Games.


Bring Your Own Parent® (BYOP®) was created for kids and parents ages 10 and under to engage on the court to learn the skills of volleyball and the movement patterns.  2013 BYOP® was officially trade marked March 26, 2013.


Jenny Lang Ping became the first women coach for the USA Women’s Olympic team and wins a Silver medal defeating her homeland country China.


Nelson works directly with Baden Sports in creating a volleyball that has the correct weight, material, size and feel for ages 10 and under. Testing took place with BYOP® families over a 7 year period.


Nelson develop the GoKids Youth Sports™ Program and Certification Process to assist teachers, parents and youth coaches an opportunity to utilize her vast experience with ages 12 and under. 

Nelson also develops the Home Training Program Series™ Online Course with Art of Coaching to assist teachers, parents and youth coaches so that players are able to practice both Physical Elements of Performance and Fundamental Volleyball Skills at home.


Nelson creates a full-time platform for training kids on ZOOM during the COVID Pandemic for ages 4 and up. With an emphasis on ages 5-10.  Her Phase V RNN Sports Gym being created and developed for roll out in 2021.  .


Nelson begins Monthly BYOP® on the Go! Facebook Live Show for teachers, parents, kids and youth coaches to have opportunities to learn from Nelson and all of her experiences

RNN Sports Gym™ nearly complete with Online Certification in GoKids Youth Sports™ and new programs for Home Training Program Series™ and NART™ online certification. Along with membership levels for everyone including the “READY” club level membership for limited time for FREE.