Volleyball Passing Ain't For Sissies
by April Chapple
Especially for high volleyball players here are 5 volleyball tips elite athletes use when passing a volleyball.
Now you can easily perform these volleyball skills to improve your technique during games and tournaments.
1. Read the Server's Body Position
When a server is ready to serve - they usually give you some indication where they are planning to serve. Checking their lower body, their feet and especially their hip position you get some clues as to whether they want to serve cross court or down the line.
Also check out where their shoulders are facing and where there tossing arm is - this will give you additional clues. A lot of servers when they want to serve a short ball to the front row hitters on the opposite side - MANY times they step right up to the serving line as close as they can. This is a pretty good indication that a short serve is coming.
So when you see that adjust accordingly by taking a step closer to the net that you cover any short serves that come in your area.
2. Stay Low
Once the referee's whistle blows DON"T STAND UP! Stay in "shoulders hunched/slightly crouched" ready position in order to serve receive. Why?
a) Because if the server serves you deep or short its easier for you to move forwards and backwards - if you are in a slightly crouched position. b) By standing up, the ball will more than likely hit you in the chest. As the serve crosses the net Stay
Low - while preparing your body position and platform to serve receive.
Be ready to take responsibility for balls that are served to you or in your area - by calling "MINE" in a loud clear voice so your teammates know that you WANT that ball and only you will pass that ball. It allows your teammates to set up early for whatever they need to do next.
Communicate what serve you think is coming. If I see someone "toeing" the line- by this I mean stepping up really close to the server's line then I will tell my beach partner OR my indoor teammates in a loud voice "Watch out for the short serve!" This mentally helps you AND your teammates to be ready to move quickly if the short serve comes. This way everybody on the volleyball court KNOWS and is aware of the short ball possibly coming.
You've also made the server aware of the fact that you know what they are about to do so it puts more pressure on them to concentrate.
4. Focus on the Volleyball
Once you've checked out the server's body position and where they look like they are serving and called it out to your teammates...once the whistle blows Focus on the BALL while its in the server's tossing hand.
Once the server tosses the ball they really can't change much of anything else so I visibly TRACK that ball from their hands when they contact the ball across the net and I track it right into my arms.
I follow by watching the ball with my eyes right into my serve receive platform. Really Focusing on the ball keeps me from being surprised and moving at the last minute once that ball crosses the net to my side of the court.
I am already visibly and mentally following that ball out of the server's hands so when it gets to the volleyball net and then crosses to my side its easy for me to move my feet and get to position to make a great pass.
5. Early Positioning -Get Stopped!
Don't do two things at once.
Don't be passing and running at the same time! Your passes usually won't go to your setter BUT instead will go immediately over the net.
Get to the spot First on the court where you see the ball is going to cross the net and land in your area even if this means that you may only need a side step or two steps or may even have to run to get to a further spot away from you Get THERE first then GET STOPPED -get your Platform out- then make the pass.
Make sure you do this in two separate movements.
So remember Get to Your Spot Quickly - Beat the ball there - Get Stopped - Make the Pass!