Uneven ground, blinding sunlight, blistering heat and an unspoken bond between two prime athletes – it could only be the intense sport of beach volleyball that brings all these elements together.
Two of England’s finest volleyball players, Jess Grimson and Daisy Mumby, have been playing together since just before the pandemic, and in that time done the groundwork for their shot at the Commonwealth Games in 2022.
Speaking on the unique physical challenges posed by a sport where the average rally is less than 14 seconds, Jess and Daisy share their rigorous training regime, the sport’s growing focus on strength & conditioning, how to form the best partnerships, and the creativity that keeps volleyball players on their toes.
This episode of Perfect Athlete is sponsored by Precision Hydration who help athletes personalise their hydration strategy using their sweat tests and electrolyte supplements.
Get 15% off first orders with discount code PERFECT15 or book a 1-2-1 call with one of the sweat experts here: https://www.precisionhydration.com/book-a-sweat-expert-call/
This episode is also sponsored by Forest Fit Clubs who run outdoor fitness classes as an alternative to indoor gyms. Catering for all fitness levels and abilities from beginners to advanced. Get a free 2 week trial with no contract or obligation to sign up afterwards: www.forestfitclubs.com/2weekfreetrial
Chris Billam-Smith: https://twitter.com/chrisbillam
Jess Grimson: https://twitter.com/jess_grimson?lang=en
Daisy Mumby: https://twitter.com/daisy_moya?lang=en
Chris Billam-Smith: https://www.instagram.com/chrisbillam/
Jess Grimson: https://www.instagram.com/officiallallana/
Daisy Mumby: https://www.instagram.com/daisomumbo/
Precision Hydration: https://www.precisionhydration.com/
Forest Fit Clubs: https://www.forestfitclubs.com/
Get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org
“When I went to university, I joined the indoor team and the coach asked me which position I played. I had no idea there were positions so I just said, ‘Every position, I guess?’” – 2:30 – Daisy Mumby
“Volleyball is probably one of the only sports that I have not picked up straight away. In that mindset, I was like, ‘Right, I’ve got to get better’. So I played in every PE session after school, any club I could join, and then by about 15 I got invited to the England Junior setup.” – 5:25 – Jess Grimson
“I think strength and conditioning, diet, psychology; all those things together make a huge difference. Going from playing for fun at an amateur level, training once or twice a week, getting some pickup games here and there, to now taking it seriously full time. I think the development’s been huge.” – 13:40 – Daisy Mumby
“Since starting with Duncan on the S&C, I’ve definitely had far fewer injuries. I used to have a bad knee, and since working with him it’s almost completely disappeared. I think that knowing when to rest is important as well, having a rest day.” – 19:00 – Daisy Mumby
“Obviously, there’s always a good end or a bad end and you know that, so you know what you need to do with the ball to get it where you want it if it wasn’t windy, which is definitely something that’s really difficult to get used to and control. ” – 24:40 – Jess Grimson
“I literally have 5 pairs of sunglasses in my bag at all times. On Monday, we played a small tournament with some friends from London. I went up to the net to block and got smashed straight in the face, and my sunglasses broke. Obviously in a game you don’t have time to put them back together, so I had to go get another pair and you know fix it later.” – 29:50 – Daisy Mumby
“Volleyball is a sport with so many different skills, and it’s constantly changing and growing as a sport worldwide – you have to stay on top of every new thing that each other team is doing, they’re always getting more creative.” – 34:00 – Daisy Mumby
“There’s studies every year for beach volleyball that the average rally is around 14 seconds. So we’re maximal for that, and then you have 8 seconds to recover. But actually you might only be touching the ball once or twice, so realistically you’re maxed out for maybe a couple of seconds. So how do you get your cardio from that?” – 44:10 – Jess Grimson
“We’re very good at having emotionally intelligent, calm conversations. For example, on Monday I had a complete mental breakdown in one of the sets, and my go-to reaction is I get really angry. We’ve had this discussion before – it’s not at her, it’s at me, but it doesn’t come across very well. We won the third set, and after that we had a conversation about what we would do in that situation again.” – 50:00 – Jess Grimson & Daisy Mumby