Volleyball Serving Drills
Quickly Becoming a Dominant Server

Volleyball serving drills are important for improving at serving. The following drills focus on 3 important areas - improving serving technique, serving strategy, and serving in game-like situations.

Volleyball Serving Drills to Improve Technique

Here are some volleyball drills that focus on improving your serving technique.

Serve with different types of spin. By focus on spin, the server can work on how they contact the ball. Focus on wrapping the hand over the top of the ball to create topspin. Focus on wrapping the hand around the side of the ball to create sidespin. The more the server practices creating spin, the more comfortable they will become with contacting the ball.

Serve with no spin. Have the server send power through the center of the ball. Be sure the hand finishes in a vertical position after contact. This will help prevent the ball from spinning.

Practice the jump serve. Even if you don't have a good jump serve and aren't going to use it in a real match, you should still practice the jump serve. The topspin jump serve is just like taking an approach to spike at the net. The only difference in the spike approach and the jump serve approach is with the jump serve, the approach is more of a broad jump with the server landing in the court. When approaching near the net, you don't want to broad jump too much or you'll land in the net. 

The spike approach at the net is more straight up and down, with less of a broad jump.

Another difference with the jump serve, the server is tossing the ball to themselves. Whereas with the spike approach, the hitter is spiking a ball that's set from the setter.

However, jump serving is a great way to learn how to spike because you have control over where the ball is tossed. With spiking at the net, it's hard to predict where the ball will be set. So, I would definitely practice jump serving to get better at both the jump serve technique and the technique for spiking near the net.

Volleyball Serving Drills to Practice Strategy

Here are some volleyball drills that focus on strategic serving.

Target Serving. Set up targets on the other side of the court and have players try to serve the ball to the target. This drill helps players focus on accuracy and placement. Start with a big target and have the goal be to hit the target 3 consecutive serves. When you reach your goal, make the target smaller or increase the number in a row you need to hit the target. Have players focus on adjusting where they place the ball by making an overexaggerated correction.

This will allow the server to get a feel of what it's like to miss the other way. For example, if when trying to hit the target and the player is consistently serving the ball too short, make it the goal to serve the ball deep past the target. After serving the ball too deep, now have the player focus on hitting the target. This will help the player get a feel of what it's like to serve the ball the way it needs to be served to hit the target. 

Make the Receiver Move Back. Your volleyball serving drills should definitely focus on moving the receiver in the way you want them to move. An effective strategy can be to get the outside hitter to move backwards when they pass. Have the server recognize where the receiver is standing and then visualize where the ball needs to be placed in order to make the receiver move back.  

Make the Receiver Move Forward. Just like you should attacker the receiver by making them move backwards, you should also serve them in a way that gets them to move forward. Practicing your serves in this way is a great way to help the server become more accurate and consistent. In a real match, pay attention to how the receivers move on the court. See if you can tell what movements are the weakest. Some receivers will move backwards well, while others won't. 

Make the Receiver Move Sideways. Moving to the side to pass is difficult for most receivers. You'll have a big advantage if you spot this weakness and are able to hit the serves to the right spots. 

Make the Outside Hitter Receive the Serve. One of the toughest things to do, is pass a ball then immediately get in position to attack. If you are up against a good outside hitter and your teams strategy is to prevent the outside hitter from getting a good set, then a good strategy is to serve the outside hitter.

When you serve the outside hitter you put pressure on them to pass because after they pass the ball, they need to get in position to approach to hit. If you can continuously serve the outside hitter, eventually they will break down. This is especially effective if the outside hitter hasn't been attacked in this way.

Volleyball Serving Strategies To Dominate Your Opponent

Volleyball Serving Drills the are Game-like Situations

Serving under pressure. Have players serve while under pressure by having a point system. For example, have the coach signal the server. The server must hit the zone 4 out of 5 times. This will help simulate game situations by teaches servers how to execute the serve under pressure.

Serve and dig. Have the server serve then immediately come on the court and get in position to dig. This drill will help the server move quickly to get in defensive position. This will help prevent the server from getting caught not ready to play defense. To make this drill more difficult, have a receiver on the opposite side of the net to receive the ball and quickly send the ball back over the net to try and score on the server.  

Continuous serving. Have players serve continuously for a certain amount of time or number of serves. This helps players develop their stamina and consistency. In a normal match, the server will get a break between serves.

Also, they may serve one time then not serve again for 6 rotations. If you force the server to practice serving continuously with little break between serves, the serve must reset the brain faster. Continuous serving will challenge the server which will result in a more comfortable server in less demanding game situations. 

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Volleyball Serving Drills for Gamelike Situations