Volleyball is an Olympic and NCAA sport, as well
as a game played by people on indoor courts and
outdoors at playgrounds and beaches, and in
backyards. Volleyball was invented in 1895, just
four years after the invention of basketball.
WHAT IS VOLLEYBALL?
Field of volleyball
The overall measurements for a Volleyball court is 60 feet by 30 feet. Each side of the
court is therefore 30 feet by 30 feet in size.
A center line is marked at the center of the court dividing it equally into 30 feet
The attack line is marked 10 feet on each side of the center line of the court. Some
rules show the attack line at 9' 10" however that includes the width of the line itself
A service line is marked 10 feet inside the right sideline on each back line. This is the
area from which the server may serve the volleyball.
The net is hung directly above the center line at 7 feet 4 inches for women and 8 feet
Volleyball standards should be set at 36 feet apart, 3 feet on either side of the
The minimum ceiling height should be 23 feet. Preferably the ceilings should be
Some basics rules
The rules of volleyball are simple, but they’re constantly changing, and
they can differ depending on the level of competition. I started playing
volleyball in middle school, in 2000, and since then, several changes
have affected high school and collegiate rules
Positions are numbered, one through six, starting with the server in the
back right corner. Then going in a counter-clockwise direction, the rest
of the positions are numbered. The actual direction of the rotation is
clockwise, however. After the server finishes, the other team gets the
ball, and you get the ball back, everyone just shifts to the right one spot.
Rotation, if not fully understood, can be a very confusing part of the
game. In basic volleyball there are three players in the front row and
three in the back, and each player just rotates to the next position as
the plays go along. Any time a player is in the back row, he or she
cannot “attack” the ball in front of the 10-foot line on the court. Attacks
are also known as “hits” or “spikes”—usually the third hit of a possession.
This rule is in effect to make sure that the strong hitters aren’t always able
to dominate the game. When the strong hitters are in the back row, they
can still attack the ball on the third hit, but they cannot jump in front of
the 10-foot line.
As for scoring, this has also changed. When I first started playing, points
could only be scored by the serving team, and games went to 15 points.
Matches consisted of the best two out of three games. Now volleyball
has changed to rally scoring. Essentially, teams score points whenever
the other team messes up, and a point is awarded on every serve.
Depending on the level of competition, most matches are now played
as the best three out of five games to 25 points. Teams must win by at
least two points for games to end. Points keep going until one team wins
with a margin of victory of two points even if the score is greater than 25.
Types of volleyball
• Beach: Beach volleyball is set up on a sand court, and volleyball players
often play without shoes. It’s a fast-paced outdoor sport that involves
volleying a ball back and forth over the net and scoring points by grounding
the ball in the opponent's court. Beach volleyball is competitively played in
teams of two, but recreational beach volleyball can be played with as many
players as desired.
Indoor: Volleyball played inside a gymnasium is a fast, non-contact sport
between teams of six players on each side. Competitive volleyball players
must be willing to work as a team to exact offensive and defensive
strategies against their opponents. Competitive volleyball games require
muscle strength, stamina and endurance, and can burn several hundred
calories per hour.
Water: Water volleyball is an entertaining sport than can be enjoyed by all
age groups and every member of your family! Played in the shallow end of a
swimming pool, water volleyball is patterned after beach volleyball but uses a
slightly lower net. Even though it’s considered a recreational activity, it requires
aerobic fitness, muscular strength, endurance, and great timing. Water
volleyball is one of the most fun and entertaining games you can play at your
next pool party!
Different Types of Volleyball Hits
The first hit in a volleyball game is the serve. Depending on the league or the level
of those playing, a serve can be underhand, overhand, or a jump serve. Underhand
serves use a closed fist or open palm to hit the ball over the net using an underhand
motion. This type of hit provides more loft than other serves. Overhand serves
involve throwing the ball up into the air first and hitting the ball using an overhand
motion without your feet leaving the ground. At the professional level, the jump
serve is used to get more height on the net and power behind the hit, and involves
the same arm and hand motion of the overhand serve, but the feet briefly leave the
surface of the court as you jump to hit the ball.
One of the most essential and basic hits in volleyball is the "bump". The bump is a
type of "forearm passing," and typically used as the first hit as the ball comes over
the net to pass the ball to a teammate. This allows the team to set up for a more
planned attack back over the net. Bumps are broken down into two types, regular
and digs. A regular bump is used when the ball is landing above the waist and does
not require a significant change in stance to hit. A dig is a bump that occurs below
the waist and requires getting in a lower position to the ground to save a ball from
hitting the court. This is more used after a spike from the other team, and helps
absorb the impact of the hit to allow better control of the ball.
According to Volleyball Worldwide, the set typically is the second hit following the initial
forearm pass. It elevates the ball so it can be spiked over the net to try to score a point.
To prepare for a set, the player should face her target, bend her knees slightly, raise her
arms so her hands are close to the forehead and open the fingers in the shape of the
ball. As the ball approaches, the player should use the surface of her fingers on both
hands to lightly but forcefully hit the ball high in the air, then extend her arms and legs in
the follow through. During a set, the ball cannot touch the palms of the hands as this
called carrying, a violation of the rules.
In volleyball, each team is allowed three hits before they must return the ball to
the other side of the net. The spike (also known as the hit or the attack) is
typically the final hit of the three. After the ball is set high and close to the net,
the attacker approaches the ball with quick steps. Then she jumps and strikes
the ball in an overhand, downward motion, driving it over the net in an attempt
to score by preventing a return by the opponent. Her hand should remain open
during the hit. If she snaps her wrist on the hit, she can put top-spin on the ball,
making it harder for the other team to block her hit.
Volleyball players use a technique referred to as a block to stop an attack, usually a
spike, from the opposing team.
Put one hand in a fist and dive on the ground and pop the ball up by moving your arm
in an upward motion.