Because beach volleyball rules! And here are six reasons why we think so…GIRL POWER Beach volleyball is ahead of much of the world with regard to gender equality – male and female beach players play on the same tours, foreign and domestic, and compete for equal prize money. As a female-led company, we applaud! Serving up even more power to the sport is one of the greatest female athletes of all time, Kerri Walsh Jennings, who will be competing for her 4th consecutive gold medal at the 2016 Olympics. Not only has Walsh Jennings won 113 career titles, she’s also had a guest-starring role on CSI:Miami. NBD. And you don’t need tickets to the Olympics to watch this female phenom dominate – you can see Kerri live at any of the AVP tour stops this summer. GUY POWER Of course, we have to show some love to the fellas, and our favorite male player on the tour this year is John Hyden. At the age of 41, the two-time Olympian became the second-oldest player to ever win an AVP event, after laying the smack down at the 2014 AVP Milwaukee Open with partner Tri Bourne. While many professional sports are dominated by young athletes – the average age of a pro basketball player is 23 – Hyden proves that physical fitness has no expiration date. IT’S VITAMIN-PACKED If vitamin D is “the sunshine vitamin,” then beach volleyball is the sunshine sport. Vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium and phosphorous, enabling bones and teeth to grow properly, supports our immune systems, and helps regulate our mood and mental state. The form of vitamin D our body uses (and the kind we include in all our SmartyPants gummy vitamins) is vitamin D3 – which is made in the skin after being exposed to UVB light. But while vitamin D is awesome, the damage that comes from too much sun exposure is not. When you’re outdoors, make sure you’ve always got sunscreen on your body and on-hand for when you need to reapply. You can also help protect your skin from the inside out by eating a few key, sun-shielding foods. Read all about them here: Can Food Prevent Sun Damage? PLAY ANYWHERE Unlike sports that require lots of special equipment or space, all you need to get a volleyball game going is a ball and a net. ANYONE CAN PLAY That’s not to say anyone can play well – like all sports, volleyball takes years to master – but almost anyone can get a volleyball across the net with little to no experience. I can’t personally vouch for this (I’ve never been a ball-and-stick sport kind of gal), but I have seen many able-bodied beginners get in the game with relative ease. IT’S SO CALI [caption id="attachment_9675" align="aligncenter" width="787"] Photo by Mpu Dinani/Getty Images[/caption] AVP is headquartered in sunny Southern California – just like SmartyPants! And while we love lots of places in this great nation and around the world, there’s no place we’d rather call home than the land of redwoods, fish tacos, and the International Banana Museum!
SmartyPants is an official sponsor of one of the hottest things to hit the beach this summer: The AVP Beach Volleyball 2016 U.S. Tour. But we could have sponsored a lot of sports - why’d we pick AVP?