How tryouts work

We roster all Division Play teams and most Power classes using a tryout and draft process. This makes our programs accessible to everyone and ensures our levels of play are consistent.

Tryouts can be a complex process but, don’t worry, we will help you throughout!

This page explains how Division Play tryouts work. Individual Power and Team Power tryouts are similar, but much simpler.


The first step is to register. Tryout registration opens at the beginning of each season. We have several programs, each with its own tryout process, so make sure you choose the right one!

Registering for tryouts is free but you are committing to pay to secure your spot if you are drafted. Dropping out after being drafted is extremely disruptive and can make you ineligible in the future.

Fill out your registration form accurately, especially the list of Divisions you are willing to play in, as you cannot be drafted for a Division you did not select. Make sure to consider the Division schedule and the level of play.

You can edit your registration at anytime from your dashboard. In particular, you can uncheck all Divisions as a way to effectively cancel your registration.

This page is a good resource if you are new to Gotham and need help understanding our levels of play.

At the time of registration, you should know the date of your tryouts. If you are trying out for several divisions, you may have to come to tryouts on multiple dates.

Attendance requirement

For Division Play, those who haven’t played in the last three Fall/Spring seasons, including players new to Gotham, must attend tryouts. The same applies if you’re looking to play at higher Division than the one(s) you played in the last three Fall/Spring seasons.

Returners looking to play the same Division(s) they played in the last three Fall/Spring seasons (or lower), do not have to attend tryouts.

For Individual Power Training, everyone interested in participating in individual Power classes is expected to attend tryouts. If you cannot attend tryouts but wish to be considered for selection in a Power class that you have previously been in you can do as follows to remain eligible: 

1) Email [email protected] in advance of the date of tryouts with the subject “Cannot Attend Power Tryouts”.

2) In the email indicate your full name, which class you would like to continue in, and the primary position that you would like to train for (if applicable). 

Please Note: This does not guarantee a spot, but will allow you to be eligible for selection in the same Power class. 

Court assignment

To reduce crowds, we will assign you a court time in advance of your upcoming tryout date. We do our best to send email notifications and reminders but the best source of truth is your personal schedule.

Note that we need to wait for a given tryout day to be over in order to assign courts for the next tryout day. That usually means that Sunday court assignments are made late on Saturday night.

The actual tryout day

You’ll show up at the time and place indicated on your schedule, bringing your volleyball gear and water. Your arrival time already factors in time to check in, warm up, receive instructions, and tryout. Avoid being too early as we may not be able to let you into the building!

Our volunteers will check you in and give you a tryout bib based on your registration form. This is a great opportunity to get help and make last minute corrections to your registration.

If we have space available, you will then go to a warm-up gym, where our volunteers will help your tryout group get organized and make good use of the time. And, when we’re ready to start, a volunteer will explain the tryout process and lead you into the tryout gym.

Divisions 1 and 2 follow a scrimmage format: twelve players line up as opposing teams and play 24 points, with each player serving twice in a row. All other Divisions use a skills-based format, where coaches run basic drills that culminate with a facilitated scrimmage. Captains for one or more Divisions will observe, take notes, and occasionally ask players questions.

Once tryouts end, you will receive some additional information and will be asked to leave promptly so that the next group can come in.

After tryouts

Captains will gather to draft teams. After each Division is done drafting, those selected receive an email with instructions to confirm their spot and get ready for the season. At the end of each day of tryouts, those not selected for any of the Divisions drafting that day also get notified.

If you don’t get selected, don’t worry. You can update your registration to add any lower Divisions with upcoming tryouts or you can consider other Gotham programming. If you’re a beginner who did not make Division 11, you should consider PowerPlay, which does not have tryouts.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: I am new to Gotham (or to volleyball) and I have no idea what Divisions to register for. Can you help me? Welcome! There is some useful info here. And, if you’re new to the sport you should also consider PowerPlay, which is a hybrid of training with playing on a league team.

Q: How many Divisions should I register for? As many as you feel comfortable playing in. You should be realistic about your level of play and volleyball experience. And you should make the schedule for each Division you register for actually works for you. Other than that, we encourage you to be open-minded. The more Divisions you choose, the more likely you are to get drafted.

Q: Can I add/remove Divisions from my registration? Yes. In your dashboard, you should see your tryout registration and a link to edit it. Note that removing all Divisions amounts to canceling your registration. Also, changes made after we print draft lists for Captains are moot.

Q: When and where are tryouts? The most up to date answer is in your schedule. Once you’re assigned to a tryout court, you will see it there, including time and location. If it’s the day of tryouts and you don’t have a court but believe you should have one, walk in!

Q: I forgot to register online. Can I still come to tryouts? Unfortunately, no. To ensure a safe tryout process and reduce crowds, we are conducting registration and court assignments in advance. If you walk in, we cannot guarantee we will be able to accommodate you.

Q: I am new to Gotham but can’t make the tryout date for the Division(s) I am interested in. Is there anything I can do? Given how the process works, with one Division drafting as soon as the previous one concludes, we can’t offer make up dates. We need all Captains to see you play in order for drafts to be equitable. If Division Play doesn’t work out this season, you should consider our other programs!

Q: I am a returner but can’t make tryouts. Is there anything I can do? If you played in the last three seasons, e.g., in Division 3, you can be considered for Divisions 3-11 without attending tryouts. You still must register online by the deadline and choose the appropriate divisions to be considered.

Q: I am still very confused. Can someone help me? Of course! You can email us at [email protected]. Keep in mind we’re volunteer-run and get tons of emails during tryout season so make sure to look around the website first.

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