Long Beach Open

Hello friends,

I have officially completed 2 goals listed on my goals in 2014 super stoked on that!

This is quite the story, which is definitely worth telling. So I was expected to arrive in LA from Harrisburg Pennsylvania at 10pm Saturday evening before the tournament that started on Sunday at 9:00 am. Unfortunately, my flight got delayed so I had to stay in Chicago for the night and sleep for about 2 hours then head back to the airport to fly back and arrive in LA at 8:30 am on Sunday.

I was determined to get to the tournament, I was so stressed the whole flight hoping we wouldn’t get disqualified or forfeit or anything. I ended up showing up around 9:05 am after the 4 hour flight thanks to a buddy Jaren for picking me up at LAX.

I was playing with a buddy Jake from Santa Cruz. I was super stoked to get the chance to ball with him. First game of the day we lost in 3. Rough start to the day for sure, yet we were determined to make it through.

We end up winning several matches in the losers then make it to the 5th place match where the wind started going crazy. We ended up winning in 3 15-12. At the finish of that game I began cramping and was looking for anything to stop the cramping. Sadly thanks to my cramping legs we didn’t make it past the crossover and finished in 3rd. Which I won’t complain about. Although it’s easy to do so.

On Friday I found out I am rated a AAA player in CBVA as well. That was one of my goals this summer along with placing a 5th or better in an open. Luckily, I had a great partner and completed both of those goals in one tournament.

Onto the sand…..

Thanks for reading,

Christian Honer

Sandia Classic 2014

Hello friends!

San Dia is one of my favorite tournaments of the year (http://smvolleyballclassic.com/) . My friend Garrett and I finished in 9th place last year. I teamed up with Drew this year with a goal of finishing 5th or better.

Saturday, we began playing a team from New Mexico. My head wasn’t there. We made it through and won 21-13 and I’m guessing the second game was 21-16. Got served most of this game and just wasn’t there yet or wasn’t awake. Frustrating when you don’t mentally prepare for a match. But these are the situations I get to learn from.

I finally got my focus on point for the next game. It was a team from Colorado I watched play last year and thought very highly of them and still do. They’re two incredible volleyball players. We got past that game in 2 as well. The scores aren’t coming to me right now. There were a few really long rallies in this game. Here’s a video from the final point.

We made it to Andre’ Belov (basically the best jump server in the game) and Dana Camacho. I admire both of their playing styles. This game was the worst serving game of Drew and I’s life. We missed like 6 serves. We ended up losing 21-19 & 24-22. I made a lot of mistakes this game and was very frustrated with myself. But looking back at it, that’s an incredible team and I’m very pleased with the way we competed against them. They finished 2nd in the tournament.

That wraps up Saturday. We watched 3 matches after that. Then it was onward to Sunday. We started playing against Bryan K. (who I’m playing with in vail). I played very poorly I had no energy or focus again and it definitely showed. This was my absolute worst game without a doubt. Just shows how important your focus is. We won 25-23 I believe.

Next match was against these two ripped dudes from Colorado who ran a quick offense (Drew and I also did this game because the wind began). This is another team I really admire and watched play last year. We won 25-20 I believe.

We immediately had to go up to the top courts for a match against Jorge Martinez (my partner from the Hermosa NVL) and Jake Rosener another California AAA player. This was to get into the Crossover. It was a good game that we lost by 2 or 3.

All in all it was a fun weekend. I am extremely pleased with a 5th place comparing to last years 9th. Next year I will have a goal of making the crossover. Improvement is what I’m aiming for. I want to consistently be improving.

What I took away/learned from this tournament:

  • I passed pretty well
  • I set a tad better
  • I felt very well put together with no pain on my shoulders or knees
  • I re-learned that I can play at a high level

What I need to work on after this tournament:

  • REACT REACT REACT – No more guessing
  • Stay true to my line on my block
  • Look at the court every approach
  • Think of the other team as a team keeping you from your goals
  • Hitting higher and making every approach look the exact same

I’m sure I will add more to these lists, but for now that’s all I got. I will try to list these thing after every tournament to help me better myself.

Here are a few pictures and a small video clip from the tournament:

Thanks again Luis Garrido for the shot.

Thanks again Luis Garrido for the shot.

Thanks Luis for the photo!

Thanks Luis for the photo!

Hit against the Colorado team for game point.

Thanks for reading.

See you on the sand,

Christian Honer

Welcome to my Journey

Blocking EVP Open ArizonaHello & welcome to my journey whether you’re a friend of mine, family member or whoever you are thank you for visiting.

My name is Christian Honer. I am 18 years old trying to pursue the wonderful game of Beach Volleyball. Visit the About Me page to learn more about myself.

Basically this site is here to document my journey in my hopes of becoming a professional Beach Volleyball Player. This site will have an updated schedule, links to social media, videos, pictures, upcoming tournaments, past tournament results, what I learned from a specific tournament, anything in between.

Thanks for visiting and if you ever have a question or need to contact me, don’t hesitate to do so. Contact Me today.

Rocky Point 2014

IS that a mustache I see?

IS that a mustache I see?

Rocky Point (yes Mexico)!

If you didn’t go to Rocky Point, you my friend missed out. Rocky Point happens twice a year, it’s a fours tournament. This year 80 teams went total. Only 6 AAA/Open teams though. Showed up Friday and played pick-up for a few hours then figured out where I was gonna stay (a couch, obviously).

The tournament day on Saturday came around. I had such a fun team. Played with Drew, Gregg, and Kristen. Our day was going so well, went 3-0 in pool play, got the first seed, won our first 2 games then played Tom, Richie, Ryan & Michelle in the semi’s and won 21-9 which I don’t think anyone expected. We then waited around for the finals. But before the finals sir Tom Witt or as they call him “the Oracle” made an announcement from his committee to give Drew & I our AAA cards (you will see in the picture below). It meant a lot coming from such a successful volleyball player. So after he distracted us and got us all excited we lost the finals 25-18 or something with NO DOUBLE FINAL. Come on man! Oh well, it was such a good time having a huge crowd watching you play the game you love.

As you can tell, I'm pretty stoked :)

As you can tell, I’m pretty stoked 🙂

How to Get Started in Beach Volleyball? New to the Game?

Hello all,

I have had a lot of questions on my Instagram with comments like “what is beach volleyball like?”, “how is beach volleyball different?”. All this is my opinion, don’t take it to heart, I don’t have the right answer.

Beach Volleyball is a completely separate game from indoor in my head, people can treat it like the same game but there’s no way you’ll succeed. Don’t get me wrong; Beach/Sand Volleyball is a wonderful way to compliment your indoor game check out this post for more “Why Indoor Players should Play Sand”. As well as Indoor is a great way to compliment your Beach game. I don’t have the exact statistics, but the majority of beach volleyball pros played indoor in college or professionally over-seas.

So if you’re new to the game, what is the same? The fundamentals are the same as your indoor fundamentals you’ve learned your entire life. Serving, passing, hitting, blocking (basically); although you will have to do all these things with the wind in mind (if it’s a windy day).

There are only 2 people on the court at one time. Woah! Don’t worry the court is also smaller. But you will have to cover much more court than you are used to on court 6’s.
The ball is different, to most people it’s easier to pass, I would have to agree with that statement. The beach volleyball has much more cushion. Here’s a few examples of beach volleyballs.
The rules are much different
The setting rules are much different, I only know of 1-2 doubles teams that hand-set. Most girls will bump set.
Where did my vertical go? Depending on if you’re in the sand in Arizona at victory lanes where you’re basically playing indoors or wether you’re in Manhattan Beach, Calif. where the sand is extremely deep you will need to learn how to jump in sand and not broad jump like you probably do indoors.
No coach? You will have to push yourself. Unless you are at the highest level of Beach Volleyball or are apart of a Beach Volleyball Club (which I think is a great idea) you will have to teach yourself the game. I did, check out my story I’ve never been coached other than 1 year of my life as a setter.

I will continue to add to this list, I am very tired at the moment of writing this post so I will definitely be coming back to it and updating it, fixing errors and what not. If you have any suggestions I missed, should be taken off, feel free to leave a comment or drop me a email.

Thanks,

ChristianVball

2014 Pro-Am

Thanks to AGamePhoto for this photo!

Thanks to AGamePhoto for this photo!

Hello all,

I had the incredible experience of playing in the ProAm this year with Mr. Ryan Doherty. It was a great experience for me to see what it’s like playing with the big boys at a high level. I had some great interaction with the man himself.  I’ve never had such a great experience in a tournament. It was so cool to see such a talented group of players out there on that day. I was lucky to be able to even keep up.

We ended up going 4-0 in pool play which I was extremely pleased about. It was really kind of him to also post something on his Facebook about the day. It was so good to just be out in California that weekend and play in a CBVA the next day in which we finished 3rd!

 ProAm 2014 Huntington Beach

Goals for 2014

Hi friends,

Goals are much more successful when they are written down or in my case blogged. I will continue to add and check off if I have attained these goals. My ultimate goal of 2014 is to get in better shape and to stabilize my joints (shoulders, knees) and keep myself from getting hurt in the future. Another goal I have is to get my AAA in CBVA. I’ve been so close with two thirds and one 5th. I have the confidence that I will get it done this year. My next goal is to make the HP top 4 in U21 so I can get the opportunity to train with some great coaches, learn the game and travel to another country to play beach volleyball. This will be an incredible experience that I really hope to get. Qualifying for a main draw in the AVP is another one of my goals. Check out this post to see my first experience in Huntington. As well as finishing a 9th or better in an NVL. Click here to see the post from my 17th in the Hermosa NVL. Check the list below.

Goals for 2014:

Stability in joints, better shape

  • AAA in CBVA – completed May 11th, 2014
  • Make Top 4 U21 HP USA Volleyball National Team
  • Move to California
  • Qualify for an AVP Event
  • Place 5th or better in a CBVA Open – completed May 11th, 2014 in Long Beach
  • Place 9th or better in an NVL Event
  • Some private beach lessons
  • Win every tournament in Arizona
  • Learn more mental parts about the game
  • Start eating better.
  • 40 inch vertical in the sand
  • Film in every tournament and most practices

I will continue to add more to these list as I think of them.

Stay in touch,

Christian Honer

How I Started Playing Volleyball

Hermosa BeachWhen I was a Junior in High School I found Beach/Sand Volleyball. Not the typical way people find their favorite sport. I started playing what I can “jungle ball” with however many people you could fit on the court, didn’t matter. I then continued to try and find pick-up every day I could I would ride my bike down to the courts basically hoping someone would ask me to play. After I had done that for awhile, I made friends and played at my local park a few days a week trying to schedule games. Someone asked me if I had played indoor volleyball (which I obviously haven’t) then gave me information on a local club which I tried out for & made the team, but never received any playing time or much coaching in practice. I felt like I was wasting my money while I wasn’t getting anything out of it, I quit. I made some connections and found out about other parks around 20 minutes away and worked my way up. Never playing doubles, in December of 2010 I entered in an Open tournament which is the highest level tournament you can play in. My friend and I thought it was “open gym” so after pool play they dropped us to A/B, we then finished last in A/B. This experience playing against some great players and losing 21-3, 21-5, etc. and all the while enjoying playing really was astounding to me. I learned so much from that tournament I can’t even begin to tell you. I was probably extremely annoying to everyone there asking questions and what not.

I made some connections after that tournament (don’t know why they would let me play with them ha-ha but they did). Then started playing pick-up and working my way up in tournaments. My first tournament win was on 6/8/2013 which is when I made my venture out to California with my friend Dayton. You can see more about my time out in California in my post here. Don’t wanna bore you with the details. Lets just say it was an incredible Summer.

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