Volleyball Basics
Learning How to Play Volleyball

Volleyball basics include learning about volleyball skills and the roles of each player on the team.

Object of the Game

Obviously, you are trying to win. The team that reaches the destination score and has a two point lead, wins the game.

In order to successfully learn how to play volleyball, you must first understand the object of the game.


To help explain what I mean by, "the object of the game is to attack", let me first go over the roles of players on the team.

The different positions on a team are passer, digger, spiker, blocker, server, and setter.

A Simple Explanation of Player Roles

Some players have multiple roles. For example, a libero will likely be responsible for passing and digging.

Volleyball Basics

Effective Spiking at the Net is Key

A middle hitter (spiker) could focus on spiking and blocking.

The role of the setter is to set spikers. The setter is also usually the team leader.

Most players have serving responsibilities. In some cases, players from the bench might sub into the game and replace the front row players. These types of players are usually called DS's (defensive specialists) because they specialize in coming in the game across the back row to play defense and pass.

So how does knowing player roles relate to the object of the game....ATTACKING?

The main responsibility of the passer is to pass the ball in a way that makes it easy for the setter to set the spiker. (The end result we are always looking for is a successful ATTACK.)

The main responsibility of the setter is to set the ball in a way that makes it easy for the spiker to spike (to execute an effect ATTACK).

The main responsibility of the blocker isn't necessarily to block the ball, but to block in a way that makes it easier for a teammate to make a defensive play on the ball.

The diggers main goal is to dig the ball in a way that makes it easy for the setter to set. (Again, the easier it is to set, the easier it is to ATTACK).

The main responsibility of the server isn't to just serve the ball into the court or to serve aces. The servers main job is to serve the ball in a way so that it makes it easier for the team to block and play defense. The easier it is to block and play defense, the easier it is for the setter to set a spiker and ATTACK the ball.

The reason the "object of the game" is to ATTACK, is because this is ultimately how you want to score points. (A successful ATTACK is always the end result you're looking for).

For example, you don't score points by digging. You score points by digging a ball in a way that the setter can get to it and set a spiker to ATTACK the ball. If the ball is successfully ATTACKED to the ground, you score the point.

Also, you don't score points by setting a spiker really well. You score because the spiker successfully ATTACKS the ball.

Volleyball Basics to Winning

There are essentially 4 ways to score points...

1. Service Ace. If you score points off of an ace, I would consider this as a successful attack.

2. Kill. A kill is a fancy word for a successful attack.

3. Block. You can score points from successful blocks, but you likely shouldn't depend on blocks to score points.

4. Opponent Error. Scoring points off of opponent errors is definitely common at lower levels of volleyball. Focusing on making your opponent make errors is good strategy for winning. The more often you are able to put your team in a position to get a successful attack, the more often your opponent will make errors.

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