This page draws together volleyball-related information for all of Special Olympics. The coaching materials and other links will help you get a good sense of how this sport contributes to Special Olympics.


Get an overview of the sport of Special Olympics volleyball.  View the Volleyball Fact Sheet

The game of volleyball is attractive to all types of players, from competitive to recreational, young and old. To play volleyball players need to acquire a few basic skills, learn a few rules, require very little equipment, and can play the game almost anywhere – from the beach to the gym. The aim of the sport is to score more points by hitting the ball with the hands and sending it over the net to the opponent's court.

Recently, Special Olympics was awarded a two-year grant from the SportsUnited Division of the U.S. Department of State to support a coaching fellowship to recruit and train high level Special Olympics coaches and leaders from the United States, Serbia, and Montenegro. A total of 20 fellows from the United States, Serbia, and Montenegro will participate in various 10-day workshops focused on recruiting and training high-level coaches and adapting their skills to work with athletes with intellectual disabilities to compete in soccer (football) and volleyball. Learn More

Volleyball Stories and News

October 02, 2014 | Europe Eurasia: Croatia

EKS honored at volleyball competition in Croatia

By Franjo Horvat

Female player gets ready to serve during the volleyball competition in Zagreb.

The poor weather did not dampen the spirits of participants as Special Olympics Croatia held its eighth national volleyball competition on 25 September 2014 in Zagreb.View Story The poor weather did not dampen the spirits of participants as Special Olympics Croatia held its eighth national volleyball competition on 25 September 2014 in Zagreb. Approximately 100 participants, from 10 institutions and centers, took part in the event that included both male and female volleyball teams and a Unified Volleyball demonstration. The competition was held at the Tuskanac Home for Children and Youth. During the Opening Ceremony the life and work of Special Olympics founder Eunice Kennedy Shriver (EKS) was highlighted to honor her on EKS Day. The Unified Volleyball demonstration, building on the "Play Unified, Live Unified" concept, brought together Special Olympics athletes with the Ministry of Interior (Police Academy), the Protective Honorary Battalion and the Jabukovac Primary School. Guests included several students from the Rochester Institute of Technology.

About Franjo Horvat:Franjo Horvat is National Director of Special Olympics Croatia.
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October 02, 2014 | Europe Eurasia: Poland

FIVB ready to continue cooperation with Special Olympics

By Krisfof Krukowski

FIVB President Dr. A.Graca presented with a Special Olympics appreciation award by Krzysztof Krukowski, Organisational Development Director for Special Olympics Europe Eurasia.

The International Federation of Volleyball (FIVB) supported Special Olympics in Europe Eurasia in organization of the Unified Volleyball Tournament in Warsaw last month.View Story The International Federation of Volleyball (FIVB) supported Special Olympics in Europe Eurasia in organization of the Unified Volleyball Tournament in Warsaw last month. Four Teams representing Special Olympics in Germany, Serbia, USA and Poland had a chance to participate in a four-day tournament. The tournament was accompanied by a rich social program which included participation in the breaking of the Guinness Record for the greatest number of people playing volleyball at one time and attending the Opening Ceremony of FIVB Men’s Volleyball World Championship amongst other activities. During the finals of the Championships, President of FIVB Dr A.Graca and General Director of FIVB F.Azevedo confirmed the interest of FIVB to continue cooperation with Special Olympics. Both gentlemen received invitations to Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles, 2015.

About Krisfof Krukowski:I am responsible for Orgnisational Development at Special Olympics Europe Eurasia.
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September 15, 2014 | SOI: Europe-Eurasia

Volleyball Legend Unified with Special Olympics Athletes

By Suzanne Coogan

Vanja Grbic with his Unified team mates.

Volleyball legend and Special Olympics Ambassador, Vladimir “Vanja” Grbić took to the court with athletes with and without intellectual disabilities as part of a Unified Volleyball demo match.View Story Volleyball legend and Special Olympics Ambassador, Vladimir “Vanja” Grbić took to the court with athletes with and without intellectual disabilities as part of a Unified Volleyball demo match. The Unified Volleyball match is just one of the highlights of the Special Olympics European Summer Games taking place in Antwerp. “I am delighted to participate and to promote more Unified Volleyball and Unified Sports across the world” says Vanja Grbić. “There are no losers in Unified Sports, only winners. This is a very special type of sport that challenges and supports everyone who participates in its own way. Most of all every athlete and team mate can be themselves and that is what is so special, that the differences of individual persons are united into a team”. Vanja Grbić, is an Olympic and World Volleyball Gold Champion. He is a long-term supporter of Special Olympics in his home country of Serbia. In 2013 he took on an international role by becoming a Special Olympics Sports Ambassador.

About Suzanne Coogan:Senior Manager, Media and Public Awareness Special Olympics Europe Eurasia
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Upcoming Volleyball Events




Oct 10 - 12 2014

Special Olympics Bangladesh National Games

Special Olympics Bangladesh’s National Games will welcome an estimated 800 athletes and 100 Unified Sports® partners across Bangladesh. Ten sports will be played: athletics, badminton, basketball, bocce, cricket, football, handball, swimming, table tennis and volleyball. The three day event will be held across different venues: Bangabandhu National Stadium, Army Stadium, National Indoor Stadium & Swimming pool and the Bangladesh Sports Education Institute (BKSP).
For more information
Faruqul Islam
Phone:+880 1819 259844
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Bangabandhu National Stadium & other venuesDhaka

Oct 10 - 11 2014

South Carolina Fall Games

Join us from October 10-11 at Pavilion Recreation Complex in Taylors, South Carolina as athletes from all over the state will be competing in Under 21 bocce, masters bowling, disc golf, flag football, volleyball, tennis, golf and soccer. Hope to see you there.
For more information
Kelly Garrick
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Pavilion Recreation Complex
400 Scottswood Road

Taylors, South Carolina

October 19, 2014

Unified Volleyball Divisioning Tournament

Join on us on October 19th at Floyd Little Athletic Center in New Haven, Connecticut as our athletes and Unified Partners take the court to compete in a divisioning tournament that will encourage athletes of all ability levels to participate and be recognized for his/her performance. Afterwards, competitions will be structured so that athletes and Unified Partners will compete with others of similar ability in equitable divisions. For more details, please refer to contact information below.
For more information
Special Olympics Connecticut
Phone:(800) 443-6105
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Floyd Little Athletic Center
480 Sherman Pkwy

New Haven, Connecticut

Nov 1 - 3 2014

Special Olympics Nippon National Summer Games Fukuoka 2014

Athletes from all over Japan will come to the city of Fukuoka for the 2014 Special Olympics Fukuoka Games to participate in 3 days of competition in 12 sports. Athletes will compete in aquatics, athletics, badminton, basketball, bowling, football, golf, gymnastics, table tennis, volleyball and equestrian.
For more information
More Details
Sayaka Sonobe
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Multiple locations, Fukuoka
Fukuoka , Kyushu

Dec 14 - 15 2014

Southern California Fall Games

Be inspired by athletic determination and courage. Come cheer on more than 1,100 athletes from across Southern California as they compete for gold, silver, and bronze medals and ribbons at Fall Games. The Games will feature our six fall/winter sports — bowling, floor hockey, soccer, softball, tennis, and volleyball. Fall Games, one of our largest competitions, is the second of two Southern California competitions held every year.
For more information
More Details
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Fountain Valley and Irvine
Fountain Valley and Irvine, California

Jul 24 - Aug 2 2015

World Summer Games Los Angeles 2015

In July of 2015 more than 7,000 athletes from 170 countries will come to Los Angeles, California for the Special Olympics World Summer Games and enjoy 10 days full of joy, friendship and competition. Athletes will compete in 22 sports. The event expects to attract 500,000 spectators and 30,000 volunteers and 3,000 coaches.
For more information
More Details
World Summer Games Los Angeles 2015
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Various Locations, Los Angeles
Los Angeles , California

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Volleyball Competitions

2014 USA Games

The 2014 Special Olympics USA Games ran June 14-21. See results and stories.

2011 Special Olympics World Summer Games

Athens, Greece, was the home of the 2011 Special Olympics World Summer Games. That year, it was the world’s largest sporting event for athletes with intellectual disabilities. See results by athlete, delegation and bib number.

How to Get Involved in Special Olympics

Special Olympics sports training, coaching and competitions go on in more than 170 countries around the world. You can get involved by getting in touch with the closest Special Olympics office.

Special Olympics near you»

Made Possible by The Annenberg Foundation

The Special Olympics movement is profoundly grateful for the support of the Annenberg Foundation which has underwritten the production of the coaches’ guides and resources, supporting our global goals for coaches’ excellence.


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Videos and Photos

Coaching in SerbiaCoaches from three countries met in Serbia to hone their skills.See slideshow »

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In Deep WaterGo feet first for one of the newest Special Olympics sports.See Slideshow »

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Power of SportsSports are a powerful way to change our athlete’s lives.See Slideshow »

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First Unity CupSpecial Olympics uses football to promote understanding.See Slideshow »

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What We DoSports, health, education, community and more.See Slideshow »


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