Beach Volleyball

New Beach Volleyball Technical Director Position Created
After the 2009 Summer Deaflympics were completed in Taipei, the International Committee of Sports for the Deaf (ICSD) replaced the Assistant Volleyball Technical Director position with a new and independent position: Beach Volleyball Technical Director. Therefore, the technical directors of both volleyball and beach volleyball will concentrate their time and efforts on their own sport.

Some of you may know me as a three-time Deaflympic volleyball athlete (1993, 1997, 2001) or as a technical director (2005-present). ICSD appointed me to assist the volleyball technical director by overseeing the inaugural four-day beach volleyball competition at the 2005 Summer Deaflympics. I was then promoted to the position of Volleyball Technical Director and supervised the 2008 World Deaf Volleyball Championships and both volleyball and beach volleyball at the 2009 Summer Deaflympics. I am honored and look forward to serving you and the beach volleyball community for the next three years!

Bids Open for 2012 World Deaf Beach Volleyball Championships
The 2010 event was supposed to be held several weeks ago in Israel, but unfortunately it was cancelled. I was very disappointed, and I am sure that many of you were, too. However, I have good news. Instead of training and waiting for another four years for the next world championships, ICSD has agreed to move the next championships to 2012 from 2014. I think this is a good decision for several reasons. First, regional confederations will have an opportunity to host their own regional championships the year prior to the worlds. Second, the worlds will give athletes an opportunity to gain international experience and prepare for the Deaflympics a year later. Third, national federations may want to start a rebuilding process during the first year after the Deaflympics.

Bidding is now open to all National Deaf Sports Federation (NDSF) members, chambers of commerce and tourism bureaus, private event organizers, and corporate partners. The deadline to bid for the 2012 worlds is 30 November 2010. Please be reminded that the second worlds will be held in 2016.

New Page on Facebook
World Deaf Beach Volleyball is now on Facebook! The link to the page is -

If you are interested in becoming a "fan" of the World Deaf Beach Volleyball page on Facebook, you will need to sign up for Facebook and create a personal account. Then become a fan by clicking "Like" on our page. There are many social networking websites, and Facebook is apparently the most popular with over 500 million subscribers. Please keep in mind that the Facebook social networking website is owned and managed by a private company, but ICSD and I are administrators of the World Deaf Beach Volleyball page. Also, be aware that Facebook is occasionally blocked in some countries.

News with photos, competition videos, and instructional videos would be appreciated. Come in and join your beach volleyball fans!

Regional Confederation Beach Volleyball Championships
The third European Deaf Sports Organisation (EDSO) Beach Volleyball Championships was scheduled to be held in Cadiz, Spain (ESP) on 14-19 August 2011, but the EDSO website says the Cadiz event has been cancelled. I hope another EDSO member nation will come to the rescue and host the third EDSO championships in 2011.

The other three regional confederations – Asia Pacific Deaf Sports Confederation (APDSC), Confederation of African Deaf Sports (CADS), and Pan American Deaf Sports Organization (PANAMDES) – are strongly encouraged to organize their beach volleyball championships for 2011 or 2015.

Qualification Procedure for World Championships and Summer Deaflympics
There were 21 men’s teams and 20 women's teams at the 2009 Summer Deaflympics in Taipei. The preliminary registration for the 2010 worlds in Israel consisted of 50 men’s teams from 32 nations and 44 women’s teams from 30 nations, an increase of 138% and 120% respectively since Taipei. The regional confederation representation by percentage share (%) was EDSO with a 51% share, followed by PANAMDES with 20%, ASPC with 17%, and finally CADES with 11%. In order to ensure that the best athletes are represented at the worlds and Deaflympics, a qualification procedure needs to be developed. We should consider the following key questions when writing a qualification procedure:

1. Should there be a minimum number of events to rank and qualify teams fairly?
2. Should ICSD comply with the Fédération Internationale de Volleyball’s (FIVB) entry of two teams per nation per gender?
3. What is an appropriate competition format?

The qualification procedure may be amended and formally adopted during the technical director meeting at the 2012 worlds.

Ranking System
I asked myself the other day, "Should ICSD beach volleyball have a ranking system?" The purpose of the ranking system is two-fold: to recognize high-performing teams for their achievements in a quadrennial and to seed teams for worlds and Summer Deaflympics. Currently, badminton, basketball, table tennis, and tennis have ranking systems and guidelines. I reviewed their ranking guidelines and summarized that their systems typically cover the following events in a four-year span:

1. Summer Deaflympics
2. World championships
3. Regional confederation championships
4. ICSD-sanctioned Open events
5. NDSF-sanctioned national championships

Invitational events are excluded from the ranking system.

Ideas and Suggestions
The FIVB has qualification procedures and ranking systems. However, FIVB and ICSD are obviously different organisations, so it makes sense to develop a qualification procedure and a ranking system that best fit ICSD's beach volleyball community. Your ideas and suggestions are welcome! You can contact me at

ICSD Technical Director – Beach Volleyball

By John Knetzger