National Teams

Volleyball England is a member of the Northern European Volleyball Zonal Association (NEVZA), which is one of five zones under the European Volleyball Confederation (CEV). In turn, CEV is a member of the Fédération Internationale de Volleyball (FIVB).

Indoor Volleyball

There are three tiers of official international competition at which Volleyball England teams could potentially compete in any given cycle. Here’s how they are currently structured.

Within this structure, Volleyball England currently operates four levels of national teams. At the top is the Senior National Teams (SNT). They comprise players who compete both domestically in the Super League and in leagues abroad. Closely associated with the Seniors is the U22s, which are also coached by the SNT coaches.

Below the U22s we have two main cohorts. The U20s are those are players who will be eligible to compete in the next U20 CEV European Championships, and by extension the next U21 Worlds. Similarly, the U18s cohort comprises players who will be eligible to compete in the next U18 Euros, and thence the next U19 Worlds. We do not currently field U16s.

Entry into the Senior and Age Group versions of the World and European Championships are via qualification events. At the age group level, qualification for U20 and U18 Euros begin with the NEVZA U19 and U17 zonal tournaments respectively. The winners there go straight into the main draw, while a number of the next highest finishers progress on to a second qualification around against teams from the other four zones.

Euro qualification for the Seniors and U22s don’t flow through the zonal process. Instead, they work on a CEV-wide mechanism.

Performance at Euros drives qualification to World Championships.

Beach Volleyball

Beach Volleyball runs on a primarily annual rather than alternating year structure. Again, at the top sit the various FIVB competitions. Here’s how FIVB depict them:

Below the FIVB sits the CEV competitions – European Championships and their age group versions for U22s, U20s, and U18s. NEVZA also run Senior and Age Group events.

Volleyball England field U18, U20, U22 and Senior teams in CEV competition, with our Senior teams also competing in FIVB events. We also field age group and senior teams in NEVZA competition when the opportunity allows.


For both Beach and Indoor Volleyball, England athletes compete as part of Team GB. This is coordinated by the British Volleyball Federation (BVF). FIVB determines qualification for the Olympics. Great Britain is not a member of FIVB. Instead each of the Home Nations (England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales) is a member in its own right. That means the path for us to compete in the Olympics relies on Home Nation qualification, not the qualification of GB teams.

In Indoor Volleyball, if any of the Home Nations qualifies, that is qualification for Team GB. The BVF would then coordinate putting together a representative team for the Games.

In Beach Volleyball, qualification is based on pairs. If an England pair earn Olympic qualification, they would then represent GB at the Games. It wouldn’t open the door for forming a new team the way it does in Indoor.

Sitting Volleyball

Sitting volleyball operates under World Paravolley rather than FIVB. Within that context, we don’t currently field teams under the England banner, but rather as Team GB. As such, the programme is overseen by the BVF.

That said, at present the GB Sitting teams are largely comprised of English players who compete domestically in our Sitting Grand Prix series.

England Talent Pathway

The England Talent Pathway is the set of systems and structures which identify and work to develop players for the England national teams across all disciplines. You can learn more about that here.