Bob Holmes would adjust the rules.
Bob Holmes would adjust the rules when playing less skilled players, such as allowing them to hit the ball as many times as they wanted, to play it off the ceiling and even let the crowd hit the ball back to keep it in play as long as it did not touch the floor and even allow as many as 100 students onto the floor at one time to try to stop him.
Following his volleyball exhibition, Bob would take the microphone and address the entire audience. He would start with some jokes or “ice breakers” and then share his heart. With the undivided attention, he would share four main points.
1) Don’t Quit! Holmes shared, “Walt Disney was told by his first boss that he had no talent. I was shy growing up, never played on a team, wasn't an athlete”. Holmes would tell a story about a boy who approached him one day after an assembly. He revealed five self-inflicted wounds on his arm including a fresh one. “ The young man said, “Last night, I tried to take my life, but after seeing you play and beat the odds, I am not going to give up on life.”
2) Look Ahead! Bob has a practical demonstration with a student driving a car to illustrate that you have to look ahead when you drive. “If you look ahead, you will be much safer in life. A 13 year-old boy came up to me and took off his hat revealing no hair. He said, ‘I am dying with AIDS and have only a few months to live. Bob, keep going and make them listen. At night, as I lay in bed wide-awake, I feel like the AIDS virus is chewing my organs apart. Those rock singers sang to me all about sex, but they never told me I would end up like this. When I was so sick in the hospital, none of them jumped on a plane to visit me . . . naw, they are out there in their heart-shaped swimming pools. Please, make them listen!”.
Bob was only into about 50 games at that time and made a vow he would keep going. “I promised the boy that I would keep going. If I can still play volleyball at the age of 85, and even if I have to use a cane, I will keep going. Little did I know I would play over 19,000 games.”
The Bob Holmes Story
3) Don’t believe all of the commercials! Holmes would share, “You see parties with everyone drinking, These commercials are saying, ‘If it feels good, do it’. But they don’t tell you what can happen as a consequence. A lady in New Hampshire came into a school, and took a container from a gym bag as she addressed a class. ‘I want to introduce to you my son. This is my son, revealing a jar full of ashes. He was a good kid, but got drunk, drove his car right into a tree and killed himself.’ Now tell me students, how would you like to see a commercial showing that? Bob told his audience that he had just read that 1,000,000 people died last year in America because of drunk drivers.
4) Stand Alone! Bob further added, “Your lives are important to me. I am tired of the TV making girls look like cheap sex objects. It is time for you boys to respect the girls and keep your hands off of them until marriage. (The girls cheered loudly every time) I don’t care what Lady Gaga says. And, you girls need to respect the boys (The boys cheered). Your future is what matters to me. Make the right choices and don’t go with the crowd if they are heading in the wrong direction.”
Today, the Holmes have three daughters. Their ages are 30, 28 and 14 years old. Trying to keep a good balance is important to Bob. He usually tries to alternate weeks, being on the road and being at home. Quite honestly, if you haven’t had Bob Holmes in your community, you are missing a huge blessing. This guy can deal and make a lasting impact that is tremendous.
A retired coach and principal exclaimed, “Bob is one of the most entertaining guys and holds the audience spell-bound. Besides that, he is a great volleyball player. The kids got a lot from Bob’s visit. They are really motivated ahead of his arrival and he meets every expectation. He works so well with the crowd. He plays to their every emotion. He gets them where the need to be as he speaks to them. They really pay attention to his short , but very impactful message.
Bob puts on a magical performance. When people leave the gym, they realized that they have seen an exhibition that they never dreamed possible. “A Guy would be absolutely insane to play 19,000 plus volleyball games.
For a brief but powerful video, check this video: http://www.beatbob.com
Bob Holmes is a One Man Volleyball Team who single handedly takes on teams.
Ripley’s Believe It or Not just finished a second story on Bob Holmes because of having played more games than any other athlete in the history of the world in any sport.
Ripley's Believe it or not discovered the Bob Holmes has played more games than any other athlete in history so they did a write up in their book.
Meet Bob Holmes
The One-Man Volleyball Team
Well, he grew up in the Boston, MA area. He really wasn’t much of an athlete. In fact, Bob was a very shy person. He never played volleyball in high school or college.
Bob started out with a bad back. His doctor recommended that he get more exercise. It was at that time, Bob began playing volleyball with a friend in their back yard. “We played 3 or 4 times a week. After watching the famed Globetrotters entertain a crowd and seeing the joy they brought to young people, I came up with the idea of a one-man volleyball team. I had desired to get into the public schools to speak out against the use of drugs and alcohol. This way, I could demonstrate to people, especially the youth, that they can beat the odds just as I was doing on the court. At the age of 29, Bob called a principal in the Pittsburgh, PA area. “I had a meeting planned there, and asked if I could play a few games, just by myself, against the students and another game against the faculty. No doubt, the principle thought that I wouldn’t have a chance, so he said ‘yes’. I played and had a lot of fun and won. Then, I called another school and before I knew it, I had 16 schools lined up.” That was over 30 years ago!
Through the years, Bob has developed a very entertaining program. Coupled with music, lots of action, many facial and body expressions, all done in perfect timing, Bob has the kids captivated and amazed with his play.
On October 5th. 2015, Bob Holmes performed his One-Man Volleyball team event in front of 600+ students at Delta Middle School in Muncie, Indiana. The event was hosted by Jeff Mosier, FCA administrator with the support of principal Brett Clark. Also present for the event was Sandy Hancock, Director of sales for Safer Lock prescription bottle and Rick Fox, CEO for FTS/Call A Doctor Plus and James Surprenant.
Bob played against the Boys Volleyball team, Girls Volleyball team (3rd in the state of Indiana) and Faculty and the principal, Brett Clark. Bob had everyone cheering between the music and his wild moves across the court. When the games were over, Bob took charge of the microphone and not a sound could be heard as he entered the hearts of all those that were present. Don’t follow the crowd, you can do anything you set your mind to and beat all the odds as I have shown you in volleyball. As an observer of the whole event, I was amazed that all eyes were on Bob as he walked back and forth in front of the assembly.
After his talk with the kids, many surrounded him and thanked him and even shared their stories with Bob. He stayed as long as they wanted to share their handshake and stories. One student came up to Sandy with Safer Lock and thanked her for being their and providing the lockable bottle and shared her story about her family. A very touching story that brought tears to anyone in listening distance.
As I finish this insertion about my observation of Bob Holmes and his amazing connection to the students, I called the following day and spoke to the principal to thank him for having Sandy, Rick and myself at the Bob Holmes event, Brett Clark, the principal stated that this was truly one of the best speaking events that they have had and Brett would be willing to call all the other schools in the area and suggest that they need to schedule this event at their school.
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I want to leave you with some of the inserts from the 100's of emails I receive after my school assemblies. Please read them. Thank You.
Where did Bob Holmes come from?
The Story of one mans journey to get to the hearts of our young adults today.
Bob Holmes is a one-man volleyball team that has faced over 500,000 opposing players before more than 5 million people in over 5,500 schools.
He has single handedly won over 19,200 games.
Bob Holmes takes on all competition including middle school, high school or college age students. Even teams made up of faculty members, policemen and firemen. Bob has even beaten many professional football and baseball teams. Normally, at a school setting, he plays a girls’ team, a boys’ team and finally a faculty team. School spirit really flows when the kids are rooting for their fellow students or for or against their teachers and principals. Bob interacts with the crowd in an amazing way. “How many want to stay out of class for a while?” he shouts over his personal P.A. system. “How many want me to show mercy on these girls, yes or no?” or when playing the boys’ team, Bob would often say, “I am feeling generous today. Then, he would ask the crowd, “Do you want the overhand serve, the underhand serve or the PSYCHO serve?”
Naturally, all the kids shout back “Psycho!” Then Bob Holmes would retreat as far back of the serving line as possible, dribble the ball wildly, then go into all sorts of bodily contortions before breaking off a steaming serve that makes the curve of Max Scherzer best breaking pitch look weak. The ball spins away from the receiver and buries itself on the floor. ’Come on, give them a hand, let’s go!” Kids shout and cheer in amazement. During Bob’s performances, he has computer-generated music which gets mighty loud.
Bob then plays the teachers, some schools, Bob announces that “If I win, it means NO HOMEWORK tonight from any class!”
The crowd erupts with pleasure.
From the audience, all that can be heard is “Unbelievable” “Incredible performance” “I would not have believed it, had I not seen him with my own eyes”