Russia, including the Soviet Union and CIS, have traditionally been a major force of volleyball since the very beginning of international competitions.
They joined the FIVB in 1948, a year after the foundation of the international governing body. The following year, they sent a team to compete in the first FIVB World Championship. They have been a dominant force on the international scene ever since, including six World Championship titles, and six World Cups and 14 European Championship golds.
This year they're defending their title from the inaugural FIVB Volleyball Nations League in Lille, where they destroyed hosts France in the final. Later in the same year Russia ranked 6th in the World Championship.
Russia were successful in the FIVB World Cup in 2011, and secured Olympic gold for the fourth time at London 2012 – their first since the break-up of the Soviet Union. They failed to defend their title at Rio 2016, finishing in fourth place after the USA came back from two sets down to win 3-2 in the bronze medal match.
Russia are currently the reigning European champions, after beating Germany 3-2 in the final of the 2017 edition in Krakow. It was their 14th gold (in addition to 3 silver and 5 bronze) in 30 editions of the competition.