Amazing Effort

Some people just throw themselves into the game in ways that defy normal levels of effort. While we expect to see this when we tune in professional sports on TV, it is inspiring to see this happen every weekend in amateur competition. I often identified people who simply never gave up, and spent a lot of time waiting for their energy and my lens to meet.

This guy amazed me. The actual event was as amazing as the photograph.

I liked this girl because her body language was often extreme after she passed the ball. This could be a pose in a modern dance piece.

The aftermath of this kind of effort usually involved picking grass out of your teeth. Note that she is already preparing to catch herself with her left hand: some people were not as cautious.

Another example of balance, grace, and extra effort.

This woman is not yet on the ground, but she is still playing the ball. Her expression, body control, and flying hair all contribute to the drama. One of her team mates can just be seen on the left, fist clenched, screaming at her.

Even with a leg brace, this woman never gave up. Her expression tells the whole story.

This was a great story. The whole point of volleyball is to play the ball before it hits the ground. The ultimate last-ditch play is what is called the "pancake", where you put your hand flat on the ground and allow the ball to bounce off of it, rather than hit the ground. This woman is reaching out for the pancake, a play that she actually made. In the background is her partner who watched in amazement as she made the play, and then forgot to continue to play. She was very angry with him just moments later.

We have already seen people do a jump serve that is graceful. This girl arches her back to the point where it made me wince. Her pose, combined with the height of her jump, all contribute to the power of the picture.

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