Little Rock Juniors Plays with Discipline and Heart-1st Place Volleyball Blog

Little Rock Juniors 17 National Team Plays with Discipline and Heart. Coach Todd Bourdo compliments his team on their 8-3 record so far, shares team goals and attributes the success to their hard work.

 “The 17-National team is made up of 15-17 year old young ladies. In my 20 plus years of coaching Junior Olympic volleyball teams this team is the hardest working team I have coached.They have a lot of self discipline and play with so much heart. They play every ball like it is match point. I have had numerous college coaches and parents from other teams compliment our team on their work ethic and how confident they look while on the court. I occasionally ask my team what is the thing I look for in players and its always “DETAILS COACH”and this remains a goal of our team since we started practicing. We are totally driven on peaking at the end of the season just before Nationals, where our ultimate goal is to win the AAU Nationals. We have a saying that if practices are harder than the actual game we will be prepared when we meet the tougher competition. Our team has a record of 8-3 and we are continuing to grow each and every tournament. We are developing plays for our offense that will make us tougher to defend so we spend a lot of time getting the timing down between our hitters and setters. We are also studying action shots of game pictures to see where we can use some improvement on defense. I am very happy at this point of the season and look forward to each and every practice because these young ladies are like sponges; they want all the information they can get to make their team better. Being a College Coach from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, I just have to say I am very proud of them.”

Thanks Coach Bourdo! We are very proud of them so far as well. Stay in touch with this amazing team by following their page on Facebook.

PLAYER PROFILE: Markie Shaedig


High School: Little Rock Christian Academy

Graduation Date: Spring 2013

GPA:            3.9

ACT Score:            23


High School: 9th Grd Yr – Varsity VB Team, 5A SW All Conf. Player, 5A All State Player, 5A State All-Tournament Team, 5A SW Conference Champions, Spring 2010 – Top 25 Camp, Selected 1 of top 25 VB Players in Arkansas, Varsity BB Team – State Runner-up, Varsity Soccer Team – 5A State Champions,10th Grd Yr – Varsity VB Team – Team Captain, 5A Central All Conference Player, 5A All State Player, 5A  All-Tournament Team, 5A Central Conference Champions, Henderson State Inv. Trmt. 1st Place – MVP of the TournamentVarsity BB Team – State Quarter Finals, Varsity Soccer Team-State Runner-up, 11th Grd Yr – Varisty VB Team-Team Captain, 5A Central All Conference Player, 5A All State Player, 5A State All-Tournament Team, Undefeated Conference Champions, 5A State Runner-Up, Henderson State Invitational Tournament, 1st Place – MVP of the Tournament

Club: Little Rock Jrs – At 13 she was selected to play on the 17-1’s Team as Guest                                                                        Player.  At 14 she was invited to play on the 16-1 Team and attended AAU Natl’s in FL.  At age 15, Coach Todd Bourdo,University of Arkansas Assistant Volleyball Coach, selected her to play on his 16-1’s team and again attended AAU Natl’s in FL.  In 2011 Season, at age 16, Coach Bourdo again selected her to play for his 18’1s team.  2012 Markie is on Coach Bourdo’s 17 National Team and was selected All-Tournament Team at Battle at the Fort 2/29/12.  Position Libero.


Position Played: – Libero, Hitter, DS & Setter, Dominate Hand: – Right, Standing Reach: – 6’11”, Block Jump: – 8’3”, Approach Jump: – 8’10”


High School Coach:  Karen M. Schaedig | 501.425.8744

Club Coach: Todd Bourdo | 501.425.9176 |

1st Place Volleyball Blog: Warm it Up with Professional Trainer, Barry Lovelace

1st Place Volleyball brings you the best way to WARM IT UP with Sports Specific Trainer, Barry Lovelace, in this week’s Drills and Skills.

Pre-game is an exciting time for athletes and coaches alike. It’s the time when we finalize mental preparations, team build and prepare our bodies for the physical demands to come. Before your team hits the court it’s important to warm up our muscles. We spoke with sports performance specialist, Barry Lovelace with Athlete Training Academy, and asked his take on this subject. This is what he had to say:

Warming up is very important. Often coaches and players alike don’t like to take the time to warm up and I can’t stress enough how much I disagree with that. Entering a volleyball game with warm, flexible muscles is not only important for injury prevention but it’s also a  way of alerting our bodies that there is work ahead.

The following is a simple and highly effective way to warm up your team that is also very time efficient. Go from one exercise to the next with no break in between.

1) Jog – Start out with a nice, easy jog. Keep with this for about 2 minutes.

2) High Knee Skip- Skip forward and as you do, drive your knee upward toward your chest with each skip. Use a full-range, exaggerated arm action; the opposite arm comes forward and up with each skip. Keep with this for a minute or two.

3) Butt Kick – Run forward and attempt to touch your butt with your heels. Thighs should be perpendicular to the floor. Lean your upper body slightly forward.

4) Lateral Shuffle – Move laterally (sideways) to the right by stepping out to the side with your right foot and then bringing your left foot to meet your right foot without crossing your feet. Keep your body square and do not twist. Upper body should lean slightly forward. Move to the right for ten shuffles and then to the left for 10 shuffles. Repeat 4-5 times.

5) Lateral Lunge – Take a big step out to the right side, lowering your hips and bending your right knee until the thigh is near parallel to the floor. Keep the left leg as straight as possible. Step your left leg in to meet your right leg. That is 1 lateral lunge. Do 10 to the right and 10 to the left.

6) Shoulders Front Raise – Stand with feet hip distance apart holding volleyball in both hands, arms straight down, ball against thighs. Use your shoulders to raise the ball to just above forehead height keeping the arms straight the entire time. Lower back down to starting position. Do 20 repetitions.

7) Raise and Slam – Perform shoulder raise as above. Begin to move arms back down and when arms are just past hip height release ball to the ground. Do 12 at half speed (simply releasing the ball down to the ground) and 12 at full speed (slamming the ball to the ground).

There you have it. A complete and total body warm-up that will prepare your volleyball player for the game ahead.

For more information on Barry Lovelace and Sport Specific Training, email him directly at


1st Place Volleyball Indoor Tournament Schedule for 2012

1st Place Volleyball Sponsored Indoor Tournament Schedule for 2012

So many tournaments, so little time! What’s a social butterfly to do?! With the biggest, baddest booth on the block, we hope you can join us in all the fun in between winning your games! Click on the event to visit the official tournament website:

Capitol Hill Classic – February 18-20

Colorado Crossroads – February 24-27, March 2-4

Asics OVA Invitational – March 3-4

JVA World Challenge – March 30-April 1

Big South Junior National Qualifier - March 30-April 1

USAV Florida Regionals – May 19-20

AAU Nationals – June 19-27

Courtney Davidson Puts the Fun in Design at 1st Place Volleyball

Courtney Davidson is this month’s featured Employee of 1st Place Volleyball. Davidson, a four year veteran, serves as the Creative Director in the Arts Department. When not designing your next jersey, you can find her handcrafting custom corn hole boards or finding her inner peace at random public places.

Courtney Davidson, 1st Place Volleyball Creative Director & Fungineer


Why she loves working at 1st Place Volleyball: “Everyday is different & you can expect anything to happen. It’s fun, loud, challenging, creative and most importantly…its volleyball.”

Motivational quote: “Go get ‘em tiger!”

Asics GEL-Volley Lyte Men’s Volleyball Shoe Review by 1st Place Volleyball

The Mens Asics GEL-Volley Lyte features rear and forefoot GEL® Cushioning for responsive cushioning.

The bottom line:

The Asics GEL-Volley Lyte features an exoskeletal upperdesign that provides lightweight medial-lateral support for long rallies. The injected EVA midsole features near and forefoot GEL® for responsive cushioning.The Asics GEL-Volley Lyte has an open mesh upper that provides added breathability for long hours on the court.  The Asics GEL-Volley Lyte offer great Rearfoot and Forefoot GEL® Cushioning Systems and an NC® Rubber Outsole. Along with these features the shoe is also equipped with a trusstic system.

The Asics GEL-Volley Lyte has a unique design that hasexoskeletal ASICS Logo stripes. 1st Place volleyball offers this shoe in great team colors: White/Black/Silver, Black/Silver. All the Asics GEL-Volley Lyte shoe come pre-laced with an extra set of laces in a different color.

Reviews: 4.6 out of 5 |

Asics Gel Volley Lyte Volleyball Shoe

Reviews on Asics GEL Volley Lyte Volleyball Shoe Now on Closeout at 1st Place Volleyball

32 Reviews | 100% of respondents would recommend this to a friend.


  • Lightweight (28)
  • Attractive (26)
  • Comfortable (24)
  • Good cushioning (19)
  • Durable (12)


  • Wears out easily (4)
  • Narrow / tight (3)


  • Gym (18)
  • Distance / endurance (7)
  • Volleyball (4)

1st Place Volleyball Joins Team Wave in the First Professional Indoor Volleyball League!

It’s been a long time coming but USA Volleyball announced the first indoor professional league, Premier Volleyball League, in the US for women last week with several states already confirming teams. Among the first was the Florida Waves; and 1st Place Volleyball was more than happy to sign up as the official Branding sponsor.

Team Wave is complete, signing 14 active players with 7 secondary players, and practices this Sunday, January 29th, at the Orlando Sports Center. A tentative competition schedule has also been announced and is posted here:

We will continue to follow the Premier Volleyball League and post updates on how Team Wave is doing.