How Kelsey Robinson Prepares for a Big Match

Focusing on your breathing and pre-match mentality can help you stay relaxed before and during a volleyball match.

Waiting to step onto the volleyball court for a match can be a stressful situation. No matter if you’re at your local gymnasium or competing in international play, the buildup to the first serve can be hard to handle.

Kelsey Robinson knows the pressure all too well. The national team outside hitter has competed on the grand stage for most of her career. Robinson has played in many big games from her college career through international competition. She spoke to Pro Tips about how she prepares for these crucial moments.


While certain matches may have a different feel, Robinson says she tries preparing for each match the same way. No matter if it’s for a gold medal or a match in pool play, she walks into each contest with the same mentality.

“That’s what gives me confidence to go into a final and perform really well, because I’ve done the work already,” Robinson says. “And I’ve done it time and time again that this just feels normal to me.”


One way she stays focused during a match is through her breathing. By maintaining her breathing throughout a match, it can help her concentrate on the competition.

“I really focus on my [breathing],” Robinson says. “I focus on being present in that moment and what’s my task at hand. How do I win this point? And then everything else just kind of fades away, and it becomes me in this moment right here trying to get the next point.”

By going into each match focused, you can be ready to help your team walk away with a win.

Looking for more Pro Tips with Robinson? The volleyball veteran discusses how she moved from libero to outside hitter to help her team. Robinson also shares advice she has received from coaches in her career.