Episode #206 — The Superbowl of Naked Volleyball

A great American philosopher/singer/dancer of the 1980s, Jermaine Stewart, once famously said, “We don’t have to take our clothes off to have a good time (oh, no).” We respect the notion that there are lots of fun things to do while wearing clothes. Going blueberry picking is infinitely more fun to do fully clothed, along with fly fishing and animal husbandry.

But have no fear — Why isn’t going the way of Tobias Fünke and his denim cut-off shorts (though Luke would be amazing in the Blue Man Group). There are lots of times when being sans clothes is where it’s at, whether you’re a nudist, naturist, or just feel like getting an all-over tan. And as frequent listeners know, we’ve talked to our fair share of people involved in clothing-optional lifestyles.

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Since it’s currently so hot that people can overcook eggs on the sidewalk (no gentle sunny-side up orders in this heat), our thoughts turn to the words of another great 80s philosopher/singer/style icon, Adam Ant, who proclaimed, “It’s at times like this, the great heaven knows, that we wish we had not so many clothes.” (Okay, Adam Ant might have had a slightly different outcome in mind than people living the clothing-optional lifestyle, but the fact remains that he wanted to strip.) If you’re intrigued by this clothes-less notion, or want to find out why other people are, this week’s episode is for you!

This week, we learned all about the Superbowl of Naked Volleyball. On the surface it’s pretty self-explanatory, but in reality, there’s so much more to it than playing volleyball without clothes on. Every year around Memorial Day, White Thorn Lodge, near Pittsburgh, hosts this memorable tournament. We obviously had a lot of questions, all of which were happily answered. What are the ages of the participants and what level of volleyball do they play? Is there one age group more represented than others? How did the idea for naked volleyball even come up? How do you differentiate teams when everyone is naked? And perhaps the most pressing question of all: why volleyball? It turns out the reasoning is pretty sound, but you’ll have to listen to the episode to find out why. (And why naked pickleball might be an option soon, too.)

There were logistical questions answered as well, especially concerning what type of court naked volleyball is played on. (You don’t want road rash in sensitive places!) We also delved into how seriously the competitors take their naked volleyball games and the short answer is, very seriously. But that doesn’t mean players of all levels aren’t welcome. And if you don’t have your own team, that’s okay. It’s a very welcoming and positive vibe at White Thorn Lodge. If you want to be there, they’ll find a place for you.

We branched out from volleyball, specifically, to also talk about nudist clubs and how the pandemic has affected interest in the clothing-optional lifestyle. And advice was given about how to get started if you’re not sure of protocol, or if you’re worried there’s going to be a lot of judgment if you make the decision to participate at a clothing-optional locale.

If you’d like to learn more about the Superbowl of Naked Volleyball, naked volleyball in general, or White Thorn Lodge, specifically, check out their website. And when you get inspired to try it out, just make sure you wear lots of sunscreen and bring a towel. It’s hot enough to cook an egg on the ground, so you definitely don’t want to be sitting naked on it!

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