Volleyball is a complicated sport requiring many different skills for success on the court. It can be difficult, therefore, to give the appropriate amount of attention to all of them during practices. Regularly performing a few specific drills will help you develop the skills necessary to reach your full volleyball potential, as an individual player and as part of a team.
This drill helps to increase vertical jump, giving your team the height and competitive advantage they need. Position two players on either side of the net, each standing about 4 feet away from the net. One player, holding the ball, bends at the knee into a full squat, lowering the buttocks to 18 inches or less from the ground without allowing the knees to move forward past the toes. From there, the player explodes into a jump, coming completely off the ground and tossing the ball over the net to the other player. The other player catches the ball and repeats the squat and toss motion. Repeat this exercise 20 times per player.
No Fear Defense
This drill teaches players to get underneath balls that are hit from an opposing team. The coach stands just behind the net on one side, while four players line up parallel to the net, 10 feet away from it. The coach then throws or hits the ball in the area between the players and the net. The players must communicate to see which player gets underneath the ball and performs a pass. To increase difficulty of this drill, the coach may start with two or three balls and put them in play one right after the other.
Get Out of the Hole
Line up two hitters spaced about 6 feet apart from each other, and about 6 feet from the net. On the other side of the net, standing directly behind the net and positioned between the two hitters, place a blocker. The coach stands behind the blocker, out of their line of sight. The coach points at a hitter, who then hits a ball over the net. The blocker must react and block, then get back in position in the center. This drill improves blocking speed and reaction time.
Slide Defense Transition
Designate both a setter and a defender; position them both on one side of the net. The coach tips a ball over the net from the opposing side. The defender gets underneath the ball and performs a pass to the setter. The setter then performs a set and the defender performs an offensive overhand attack. The players must work together as well as hit the ball accurately to complete the drill.
Poppy Carpenter graduated from the University of Missouri School of Journalism. In addition to teaching journalism to junior high students, she also covers health and fitness for "PUSH Monthly" and Angie's List.