Volleyball Costume Selection Tips

Over the years, since the beginning of volleyball, the costume has undergone tremendous changes in designs and technology. From sleeveless jerseys to full-sleeved ones, many updates hold technological advantages and help improve performance by providing comfortable movements and better air circulation. Since volleyball is a sport that demands quick action, the appropriate costume is expected to be made up of breathable fabric, durable, and light in weight.

A perfectly designed costume will feel comfortable and boost the team spirit with the color choices and styles. A volleyball player’s uniform mainly consists of a jersey, shorts, shoes, and socks. Apart from these, a few protective gears complete the outfit for a safe game. Every football team is bound to follow specific rules based on their level. The costume is also decided according to the set rules and standards, violating which may lead to disqualifications. The idea of selecting an outfit is thus not limited to appearance only. This is the right place to gather knowledge if you are considering picking a good costume for your team or yourself. This article intends to equip readers with costume selection tips and help them make good decisions.

Choosing the necessary parts of the costume

Though there aren’t significant differences in the costumes for men and women, a few additional rules are applicable for women’s uniforms in both court and beach volleyball. Here are a few general tips to consider while choosing the outfit for both men and women players.

Select a close-fitting jersey

This sport is about the physical movements and reflex actions made while dealing with the ball. The correct fitting jersey not only supports quick activities, unlike baggy outfits that hinder the ability to move but also supports the muscles and back while saving from injuries to a great extent. The jersey should not be too tight or loose and should be long enough to cover the stomach or tuck in the bottom wear. Players can also choose to have long-sleeved jerseys to protect the forearms from the ball impact and in cold weather.

Pick similar color undergarments

For women’s apparel, an appropriate sports bra is an important part that offers adequate support for various movements. Depending on the comfort level, anything like racerback or front-fastening can be chosen. But considering the rules, if the undergarments are visible for both men and women, they should be of similar color as the jersey.

Select close-fitting shorts

Appropriate bottom wear supports leg movement while playing. The right fit will support the muscles and give freedom to move quickly. Though women players can also opt for tight-fit leggies or pants, based on many sportspersons’ experiences, spandex shorts are the most comfortable option for them. The spandex material provides good airflow and is quite stretchable with a tight fit. Still, getting the right size is necessary for a comfortable fit.

Men can choose shorts that are less tight than spandex shorts and are not as short as them. Their shorts should be snugger than women’s bottom wears but should be better fitting compared to normal workout ones. The bottom wear can have the manufacturer’s logos but again, after considering the set regulations.

Choose comfortable socks

Socks can be crew, calf height, or knee height. The only thing to consider while choosing socks is that all the members should have similar socks if they belong to a specific brand sponsoring them. Otherwise, the color should match the uniform, or any light color will work. The appearance should be decent, without any character print, designs, cartoons, etc. Consider choosing a pair that feels comfortable and fabric is not harsh on the skin. Knee socks are a great option to provide added knee protection and prevent bruises and injuries. It is advised to avoid ankle socks as they may keep sliding down and distract the player. The size is also essential in preventing frequent sliding and avoiding needing to readjust. A few unique features are provided in socks, including moisture control, built-in arch support, cushioning, and blister control. Consider such options for added comfort.

Pick a pair of shoes

The shoes specially prepared for such sports activities differ from regular sports shoes. These provide excellent gripping and are made using breathable fabrics. Such shoes provide good arch support, and if one is serious about considering volleyball long-term, investing in specially-made shoes would be beneficial. There are options to pick from depending on the weight preference of the players. Pick a pair that fits perfectly and is comfortable to move around in.

Knee pads

Investing in knee pads is a wise decision to protect the knees from tripping accidents, bruises, and other injuries. These also provide support to the muscles of the leg and help in quick movements around the court. Knee pads are bought based on knee measurements and comfort level. So, consider getting a pair to protect the knees better.

Does color affect the game?

Colors do not directly affect players’ performance but are believed to impact psychological functioning. Based on the critical beliefs and findings of Taylor & Francis Online in 2020, there are psychological functioning effects of color theory. The research presented by them showed that people’s reactions become faster and more forceful when they see or wear red color. Similarly, black is considered to have been tied with aggressive behavior. Now, whether colors impact people to such a great extent or not can be said for every individual, but colors affect the mood and environment based on psychology.

The blue color leaves a calming effect on the surrounding. It is associated with sincerity and truthfulness and thus can be beneficial in keeping the team cool throughout the game. The green color is considered cheerful, represents growth and health, and thus spreads healthy vibes in the team. Yellow and orange are other bright impact-bearing colors that provide a vibrant look and cheer up members and viewers. Choosing the right color for a volleyball costume thus depends on the effect one wants to create. Bright colors should be selected for a cheerful environment, while dark colors would be perfect for a calm appearance. The costume color of the entire team should be similar except for the Libero.

Does size matter in the costume?

The costume size is an essential factor that can either help improve the performance or distract the players, which may lead to losing the game. A perfect-fit costume supports muscle movements, does not bulge up while making the court moves, and helps maintain body heat. Players are advised to have a slightly loose jersey (not too loose to bulge up repeatedly) that feels comfortable and allows movement freedom in the shoulder area. It should not be too long to hang on the thighs and not too short to stretch up. The length should be enough to tuck inside the shorts or hang down a few inches above the thighs.

When the bottom wear is considered, women players must have either spandex shorts or tight-fit leggings. Men are required to have slightly loose shorts (more snug than baggy workout shorts) with a length a few inches above the knees to give a comfortable and pleasing appearance. For shoes, pick a pair that fits perfectly. Choosing a bit loose or tight shoe will keep distracting the player or can even lead to blisters because of the constant friction with the foot.

The role of fabric and cuts

Considering the fast movements and intensity of the game, volleyball players deal with sweat and body heat while ensuring not to let these things affect their performance. Thus, it requires costumes made up of breathable, soft, and lightweight fabrics to facilitate quick movements and ensure good airflow. Apart from it, two other crucial areas involve the design and cuts of the costume. These three things together decide the durability and style of the team jersey.

The jersey material should be moisture-wicking and should not feel sticky and uncomfortable. Cotton has been a favorite material when sweat-absorbing features are considered. Still, as it absorbs sweat, the fabric will start weighing down as the game starts getting intense, which may feel uncomfortable to the players. Spandex is always a go-to choice for sports outfits as it provides mobility and is stretchable, ensuring durable apparel. The costumes should be made up of fabric mixtures with some percentage of spandex. Polyester fabric can be chosen with meshwork to allow more excellent airflow. There are also options with mixtures of polyester and spandex in different ratios.

From the variety of fabrics available, one can pick a material that feels cool and comfortable during play, remains lightweight, and is highly durable. The cuts of the jersey impact the appearance and convenience of the players. The available options include sleeved and non-sleeved jerseys. The non-sleeved ones are a good choice for hot weather or outdoor game, while the sleeved ones protect the arms from impact and are also suitable considering cold weather.

Designs and buying options

Buying options for volleyball costumes involve ready-made options or custom-made outfits. The ready-made costumes are available with limited designs and predesigned logos and numbers on various online platforms of different popular sports apparel brands. No matter the preferred option, the outfit should be professionally made, durable, and have good constructions and comfortable fabric. When it comes to design, custom-made options allow the team to create an everlasting impact on the viewers. They get to see their most creative ideas printed on their jerseys, which can boost team spirit and enhance their style statement.


Apart from choosing the fabric color and design, there are a few rules set on every level of volleyball games, school or college clubs, or national or international groups. Every team needs to follow the instructions provided by authorities while selecting the outfits. Such instructions include the number format on jerseys, the size of the logo, the color of the player number, etc. Following these is necessary to prevent disqualification just based on the costume.