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Not having pockets can be inconvenient, especially if you don’t have room or time to bring a bag. Whenever I play pick-up volleyball on Sundays, I don’t typically bring my tournament bag. So I like choosing to keep my things in my short pockets instead.
If you’re in a hurry? Here are the best volleyball shorts with pockets for both men and women:
The best men’s volleyball shorts with pockets are the MIER Athletic Shorts and Anthem Athletics 7” Gym Shorts for their breathability, zippered pockets, and comfort. The MIER shorts look classic and have an extra back pocket to keep your things out of the way, maintaining high levels of comfort during practice.
The best women’s volleyball shorts with pockets are the KORSA Women’s Workout Shorts for their three sealable pockets, stretchable 4-way fabric, and internal drawstring to help get that perfect fit. Breathable and comfortable, these shorts both look and feel great to wear on the court and are a great alternative to spandex.
In this article, I’ll discuss:
- Factors to consider before buying shorts with pockets
- My take on the four best men’s volleyball shorts with pockets
- My take on the four best women’s volleyball shorts with pockets
- What additional features of shorts are beneficial for volleyball
- Why some volleyball players avoid pockets
4 Factors to Consider When Buying Shorts With Pockets
In volleyball we slide around on the floor a lot, so we’re going to pick up a lot of sweat and dirt on our clothes. In particular, anything made out of too much polyester suffers from friction burns: I’ve personally ruined more sets of polyester sweatpants by ripping holes in them than I care to admit. Shorts made of polyester suffer the same problem, but to a much lesser extent.
Consider the materials of the shorts you’re buying and what you’re using them for before buying. For volleyball, we want shorts that are comfortable, sweat (and dirt) wicking, and won’t tear easily under friction. The choices I’ve listed below are all good options that meet these criteria, but can also be used as a starting point for your own shopping around.
Think about the shorts you use: do they ever chafe? Is the waistband too tight typically, or do you not like elastic? Maybe knotted shorts are better for you. We want our clothes to feel part of us and not distract us from the job at hand – in this case, volleyball. We want them to be comfortable!
Comfort is so important on so many levels, whether that’s helping our self-esteem, keeping us safe, or just the general happiness of our place in society. Even when we’re working hard and the farthest possible thing from resting – in fact, especially then – we should be comfortable in our clothes. This will let us continue to work hard and pursue our dreams, even when it’s hard.
The length of your shorts is an important one for men mostly (not women), and something my brother and I have clashed about over the years. He’s a cross country runner and prefers shorter shorts, while I play volleyball and like longer shorts. Both options are good for either sport, but the choice ultimately comes down to you.
Shorter shorts keep you cool and provide a greater range of movement in the groin, allowing longer strides and more dynamic jumps, and as such most volleyball uniform shorts are very short. That being said, most players prefer to practice in something a little longer, and most of the options you will find listed below are slightly longer than what you will play in matches with.
Longer shorts have a number of applications, such as protecting you from the sun, keeping you warmer if you practice early in the morning or somewhere cold, or maybe even providing a bit more modesty if you’re shy about your legs. Maybe you just think they look cooler, and that’s fine too. Understand that there are benefits to both lengths and choose the one that best suits you.
The last factor to consider is the style of your shorts. Some players don’t realize that not all shorts are alike: there are hotpants, basketball shorts, running shorts, spandex shorts, or boardshorts to name a few. While these all look different and perform different specializations, some have grown to become synonymous with their sport (like running shorts).
Hotpants and spandex shorts have dominated women’s volleyball fashion for years, and rightly so. Both provide a larger range of movement than alternatives such as basketball shorts, and this is needed in volleyball thanks to the change in elevation (jumping, passing, diving, and flowing through ready positions and stances) and the three-dimensional movement that follows.
However, this does not mean that other options are worthless. Basketball shorts are tried and true options that usually come with good, deep pockets, and running shorts especially are known for their lightweight material and pockets in the back. It all depends what style suits you best.
Men’s Volleyball Shorts With Pockets
The four best men’s volleyball shorts with pockets are:
- MIER Men’s Quick Dry Athletic Shorts
- Pudolla Men’s Workout Shorts
- Anthem Athletics Hyperflex 7″ Men’s Cross-Training Gym Shorts
- SILKWORLD Men’s Running Shorts
They are breathable yet stretchy, and provide easy movements for the jumping, diving, and running required while playing volleyball.New: $24.99
The best men’s volleyball shorts with pockets overall is the MIER Men’s Quick-Dry Athletic Shorts due to their breathability, zippered pockets, and comfort.
The MIER shorts are built for activity and sport, making them durable and long-lasting for our purposes as volleyball players. They are breathable yet stretchy, and provide easy movements for the jumping, diving, and running required while playing volleyball.
The pockets are the best part of the MIER shorts, with two, deep side pockets and one rear pocket, all of which are zippered. This allows their use either while playing or just watching, and when zippered closed prevents your hands from catching in the pockets during an arm swing or otherwise playing, helping you to avoid injuries.
All zippers are hidden under fabric flaps to prevent them catching on anything while playing, and the internal drawstring hidden inside the waistband also means that it’s tucked out of your way while playing.
With simple colors and a classic design, the MIER shorts look great and give you the option to wear them comfortably to your business before or after volleyball training, whether that means class, work, or family events. I would highly recommend these shorts to anyone looking for a flexible performance option to play volleyball in and enjoy wearing in the warmer months.
- Moisture Wicking
- Zippered Pockets
- Rear Pocket
- Hidden Drawstring
- Looks Great
- Limited Styles
- Made of Polyester
It's a good value, lightweight, moisture wicking, and has zippered pockets.New: $19.99
A similar option to MIER, the Pudolla Men’s Workout Shorts are the best value for men’s volleyball shorts with pockets.
The Pudolla shorts are made primarily of nylon, enabling them to remain lightweight yet functional for our purposes in volleyball. With its elastic waistband and hidden drawcord, these shorts allow you to adjust their size to perfectly fit anyone.
While they do not have a rear pocket, the Pudolla shorts do have two zippered side pockets that help secure your items and keep them safe. The reflective logo on the front helps catch people’s eyes while you play and can provide some slight visibility at night, though the print is very small and shouldn’t be relied on for that.
The shorts are moisture-wicking, meaning that sweat doesn’t linger and the material will dry fast if it ever gets wet, keeping you moving and fresh throughout your practice.
My personal favorite thing about these shorts is the huge range of styles and patterns that they come in, from tiger stripes to ocean green, from wine to tango red. While these shorts are comfortable and feel great to wear, comfort extends beyond the physical comfort clothing provides, into the region of style. Being able to personalize beyond a simple red, black, or blue let you express yourself on and off the court, something that is often downplayed in importance for men.
- Good Value
- Moisture Wicking
- Zippered Pockets
- Huge Range of Styles/Patterns
- No Rear Pocket
- Less Durable Than Competitors
It is known for making high-performance, comfortable apparel for a range of sports and training ventures.New: $34.99
The most comfortable men’s volleyball shorts with pockets is the Anthem Athletics Hyperflex 7” Men’s Cross-Training Gym Shorts.
Anthem Athletics is known for making high-performance, comfortable apparel for a range of sports and training ventures, but primarily martial arts such as Brazilian jiu-jitsu and Muay Thai, among others. Their experience making comfortable clothing for these sports – in some cases padded or body contouring by nature – allowed their knowledge to be used in making other products, like these shorts.
The Hyperflex Cross-Training shorts are extremely comfortable and durable, as you might expect from material that can be used in martial arts training. This makes the shorts a little heavier than the other options on this list, but the softness given by the spandex-cotton weave makes it all worthwhile. Consider its non-chafing waistband – which is so problematic for some shorts – and it’s a winner.
The Hyperflex shorts have wide side pockets made at an angle to prevent items from falling out, and these blend fashionably into the other lines of the shorts almost invisibly. Unfortunately, these shorts do not have a fabric cover to the zipper lines and are exposed. They do use YKK high-quality zippers though, which means no catching on the fabric or broken zippers, resulting in longer-lasting shorts.
The best thing about these shorts besides their comfort is how easily they slide across the floor. Their thickness gives a little barrier between you and the ground, and the material’s softness helps you slide easier and better. Just be careful – while the shorts are moisture-resistant, it will gather dust like a sponge! But hey, at least your floors will be clean.
- Wide Pockets
- Zippered Pockets
- Slides Well
- Gathers Dust
- No Zipper Flaps
- Heavier Than Competitors
They have two zippered pockets and an internal drawstring to adjust waist size, and cool stretch fabric which enables a greater range of movement.Check Amazon for Pricing
The best beach shorts option for men’s volleyball shorts with pockets is the SILKWORLD Men’s Running Shorts.
The shorts on this list so far have mostly been gym or basketball style shorts, but since volleyball shorts are a bit shorter I’m glad this made the list. A great choice for anyone who wants a shorter option or something for the beach, these shorts are both affordable and ideal for any player who wants shorts with pockets.
The SILKWORLD shorts have two zippered pockets and an internal drawstring to adjust waist size, a reflective logo, and cool stretch fabric which enables a greater range of movement than its competitors. As shorter options already give a better range of movement, optimizing for this is both smart and effective as an option for athletes.
These shorts have an inner mesh to keep all your equipment where it belongs, and its split-leg design means that you won’t be yanking the lining of one leg when the other moves.
Breathable and comfortable on either the beach or indoors, I think this is a great option for volleyball players anywhere.
- Zipper Pockets
- Cool Stretch Fabric
- Inner Mesh
- Split-Leg Design
- Made of Polyester
- No Rear Pocket
- Not Many Styles
Women’s Volleyball Shorts With Pockets
The four best women’s volleyball shorts with pockets are:
- KORSA Women’s Workout Shorts
- BALEAF Women’s Athletic Long Shorts
- Halara Low Rise Shorts
- Nike Women’s Dri-FIT Attack Training Shorts
They are known for their three sealable pockets, stretchable 4-way fabric, and internal drawstring to help get that perfect fit.New: $39.99
The best overall women’s volleyball shorts with pockets overall are the KORSA Women’s Workout Shorts.
The KORSA shorts are a great length and look, falling to the mid-thigh (a 5” seam) without any superfluous material that could be caught or get in the way while playing volleyball. The material slides easily over the floor and is not transparent, perfect for allowing you to focus on the game at hand without worrying about who’s watching.
The KORSA shorts include a built-in brief liner that is designed to help you feel light, fresh, and comfortable while playing, maximizing breathability. For a sport like volleyball, where points can seem like they go on forever, and the set stretches on until you’re exhausted, the more that your clothes support you, the better.
The KORSA shorts look great and have a great fit, whose only downside is that they come with a limited range of colors to choose from. With two zippers closed pockets in the front, and a Velco closed pocket in the back, these shorts are ideal for any volleyball player looking for an alternative to spandex.
- 3x sealable pockets
- Internal drawstring
- Flexible fit
- Limited range of styles
They are made of a polyester, spandex, and cotton blend that makes them extremely comfortable to wear.New: $24.99
The best long (Bermuda) style women’s volleyball shorts with pockets are the BALEAF Women’s Athletic Long Shorts.
Purportedly different from traditional athletic shorts, the BALEAF long shorts are made of a Polyester, Spandex, and Cotton blend that makes them extremely comfortable to wear. Their “relaxed-fit” design is intended to stop the shorts from riding up and binding your thigh, while the thickness of the fabric prevents transparency.
The long in-seam is specially designed to prevent chafing, which can be a common problem for volleyball players in spandex. The material glides over itself instead of your skin and will greatly benefit any players who find chafing to be a problem.
Last, a wide waistband is designed for comfort and will stretch with your body, which includes a hidden waistband pocket in which you can store your personal belongings (7” pocket). With its two side pockets, these shorts are a great choice for any volleyball player looking for a Bermuda-type option to play in.
If the longer option isn’t for you, BALEAF makes a range of other really great shorts with varying amounts of pockets and leg lengths. These other shorts didn’t make this article though, because aside from the trademark waistband zipper pocket BALEAF is known for, their pockets aren’t great.
- 7” long in-seam
- Extremely comfortable
- 3x pockets
- Thick waistband
- Non-sealable side pockets
The most comfortable women’s volleyball shorts with pockets are the Halara Low Rise Shorts.
The Halara shorts are very comfortable and have an adjustable drawstring for a personalized fit. The fabric is breathable and fashionable, and its moisture-wicking properties mean that the material won’t stain from sweat.
The split-leg seam is good for volleyball due to the explosive movements required by the sport, and mean that the shorts won’t ride up or become displaced in other ways from your movement.
A single side pocket is available to store your essentials and can be closed via zipper. While the shorts have much fewer pockets than others on this list, I believe that the comfort and benefits of the Halara shorts outweigh the lack of numerous pockets, and the quality and depth of the pocket that it does have is higher than other shorts that may otherwise be included.
A plain but classic design that is excellent and comfortable for playing volleyball, I recommend the Halara shorts for anyone who is looking for comfort over pocket space, or for the player who can’t live without their phone.
- Very comfortable
- Won’t ride up
- 1x zipper pocket
- Moisture-wicking fabric
- Only one pocket
- Single style option
Simple design, very breathable, and 2x side pockets.New: $21.99
The best women’s volleyball shorts with breathability are the Nike Women’s Dri-FIT Attack Training Shorts.
These shorts are the essence of what it means to be simple: there’s nothing fancy about them other than the material used and the insignia (Nike) on the hem, but they’re good shorts nonetheless. Due to their lightweight material, however, they are slightly transparent, so keep that in mind when purchasing.
With two side pockets that are deep enough to be useful, these shorts are a good option for any player looking for a solid option to wear to practice. The placement of the pockets for these shorts is slightly farther back than others, but this is ideal for volleyball as it will catch less easily when diving or falling into the net. This makes up for the slight deficiency of not being able to seal them.
For anyone looking for a simple pair of shorts with good pockets, great breathability, and a straightforward design, these are the shorts for you.
- 2x side pockets
- Very breathable
- Simple design
- Non-sealable pockets
- Slightly transparent
The Danger of Playing With Pockets in Volleyball
This might seem like a strange section to include in an article about which shorts with pockets are best for volleyball, but it is important nonetheless.
If you’ve played volleyball before, chances are you’ve noticed that the uniform shorts never have pockets (if your team knows what they’re doing). This is deliberate, and there is a very definite reason for it.
Despite their usefulness and cool factor, the truth is that pockets are a liability for players, leading to injury and inconvenience in many cases. Because of this, some coaches and teams absolutely forbid players from practicing in pocketed shorts.
Volleyball is a game with a lot of moving parts and swinging arms, all of which need to synchronize and work smoothly to avoid injury. When you add pockets to the equation, players’ hands and thumbs occasionally get caught in the pocket during their arm swing, wrenching their thumb, hand, or arm and offering the occasion for injury.
More annoyingly, pockets get caught on uneven surfaces when diving, tearing the shorts and potentially injuring the player also. If anything was in the player’s pockets when this happened, the situation only worsens.
Knowing this, many players will avoid pockets at all costs when playing, just wearing sweatpants over their shorts when they need pockets or using a bag instead.
As a coach, I recommend that players practice in shorts without pockets or ones that have a rear pocket instead, but as a player I know that the likelihood of injury from your pockets is very low. The best way to lower this further is to wear shorts with zippers and play with them closed, in essence eliminating the threat. All of the shorts offered in this article include this feature.
At the end of the day, players will continue to play with pockets, and that is ok. Rather than avoid pockets altogether, the best thing is to be aware of the danger and try to minimize it for you and your team. Use zippers and your own common sense, and you’ll be fine.
For excellent men’s volleyball shorts with pockets, I recommend the MIER Athletic Shorts and Anthem Athletics 7” Gym Shorts for their breathability, zippered pockets, and comfort. Fashionable and functional inside and out of practice, it is an excellent option for players of all levels and just a great pair of shorts.
The best volleyball shorts with pockets are the KORSA Women’s Workout Shorts for their three sealable pockets, stretchable 4-way fabric, and internal drawstring to help get that perfect fit.
Other Volleyball Short Articles
About The Author
Ailan Samuel is a writer and athlete who has played volleyball at the university, club, and national level since 2012. He has competed successfully in both beach and indoor competitions, resulting in four silver and two gold medals, and was awarded the Half-Blue while playing in Scotland. He received his MA in English and Medieval History from the University of St Andrews, Scotland, and is currently studying for his MA in Publishing and Creative Writing at Bournemouth University.