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The Leader In Beach And Indoor Volleyball Apparel

Professional Volleyball Player & Smack Sportswear Athlete of the Month

Lindsey Berg answers your questions!

1.       When did u start playing volleyball?

I started playing volleyball when I was very young.  My father was a volleyball player and coach so I was touching the volleyball I think when I was even 6.  I started playing on a team when I was 9 and competing at the Davis Volleyball Festival at 10 years old.

2.       What are some of the things u did to help make yourself better outside of regular team practices?

Now in my career it is all about maintaining my body.  A lot of therapy and strengthening.  But when I was younger I was in the gym any free moment I had.  I have to admit I probably over did it a little but the more touches you have the better you will be.  I watched a lot of volleyball so I could become a master at the game.  Volleyball is not only about your physical skills, it is about your knowledge of the game as well.  Reading plays, recognizing situations, then knowing what to do in certain situations.  Also it is a mental game.  I do a lot of mental training with a coach earlier in my career, and now on my own.  If you can be a strong mental player it will make you an even stronger volleyball player.

3.       What is your favorite part about living in Italy for half the year?

I am finishing up my 6th season here in Italy.  I feel like I am here more then anywhere else in the world.  I have been fortunately enough to have a great career here.  The Italians have been very welcoming.  It is great living here for many reasons.  First of all the volleyball is great.  I still think it is the top league in the world…I am a little bias since this is the only league I have played in.  I get to play with and against some of the best players in the world and it has definitely contributed to improving my game.  Other then the volleyball part of it…I have been able to learn a new language and culture and experience places and things that I could never have done in the states.  I have met friends that will be in my life forever.

4.       Are you still enjoying traveling the world playing the sport you love?

Obviously I am still enjoying it or I wouldn’t be doing it.  It does get trying both physically and mentally but not many people in the world get this type of opportunity.  It is also my job but when I am out there on the court it never feels like that…my love for the game is all that comes out.

5.       What made you decide to play in Italy instead of other countries?

After the Athens Olympics I got a very good offer to start my professional career in Italy.  It was an offer I could not pass up.  I have had other offers to play in other countries but Italy always finds a way to keep me.  It is a great league and very nice living.  Really I have no reason to leave…

6.       If you could change anything about your volleyball career, would you?

The only thing I can think of would be more rest.  My body is definitely paying for all the hours in the gym.  It is great to play a lot and practice a lot but active recovery and rest is just as important.  I would have taken care of my body better if I could change anything.  Other then that I wouldn’t change anything…I have done more in my career then I would have ever imagined.

7.       What is one tip you would give to a setter trying to play in D1 college?

Be a leader…

I know you asked for one tip, and being a leader isn’t that simple.  It takes a lot of work, especially mental work.  Be the hardest working player in the gym.  Develop relationships with your teammates.  As a setter you have to communicate with everyone.  As far as volleyball skills, touch the ball as much as you can.  You have to have a certain feeling with the ball and you develop that with the more reps you get.  Practice, try different things, develop your own style…

8.       In all your traveling with both US team and your professional team, what is your favorite place?

Oh wow, this is a tough one.  The hard thing about this question is when we are traveling with the team we don’t get to see much other then the hotel and gym.  But Japan is an incredible place to play.  The support is amazing, the people are so generous, and there is a true love there for the sport.

9.       How do you balance both life and volleyball?

Balancing life and volleyball is tricky.  In recent volleyball has definitely taken over my life and most that I do is for my volleyball career.  But it is important to have another life as well and balance with other things that you enjoy doing.  When I am not playing volleyball I am normally with my family or friends that I don’t get to see often.  I am also very interested in fashion and I try to do some projects with that when I have time.  Balancing is hard at this level because the time commitment is huge and there is not much time for other things.  Being organized is key.   But when I do have time I find a way to be with the people that I love.

10.   Are you going to compete in the 2016 Olympic games as well as the 2012?

Right now my goal is to make the 2012 Olympic team.  That will for sure be my last Olympics if I make it.  But I would love to go to the 2016 as a supporter and experience the Olympics in a different way.

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