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  1. volleyball
  2. serving rules

Volleyball Serving Rules

As you may know, at the beginning of each rally an offensive player serves the ball into the opponent's court. In this chapter, we'll learn a bit more about service.

Table of Contents


Serving The Ball

Serving is putting the ball into play by throwing it into the air and hitting it into the opponent's court.

When Do Teams Serve?

After each point is scored, there is a serve. If the point is scored by the serving team, the same player on the same team serves the ball. If the point is scored by the receiving team, the next player in the rotation on the other team serves the ball, as we learned in Chapter 5.4: Volleyball Rotation.

Can You Score On A Serve?

Absolutely! If the receiving team fails to hit the ball back over the net on a serve, the serving team scores a point. This is called an ace.

Where Does Serving Happen?

There is a service area about 10 ft wide and behind the end line. Players are not allowed to cross the end line.

Rules of Service

The rules of serving the ball are as follows:

A Player CAN:

  • serve underhand or overhand
  • jump when they serve
  • stay on the ground when they serve

A Player CAN NOT:

hit the ball with two (2) hands

  • toss the ball in the air twice
  • dribble or move the ball around before the serve

A Player MUST:

  • stand behind the end line
  • serve the ball in eight (8) seconds

Goals Of Service

The goals of serving the ball are as follows

  • to begin a rally
  • to score a point

Serving Strategies

When players serve, they are almost always hitting it in a strategic spot.

A server can target the serving zones of the court to get an advantage when serving. For example, a short serve is one hit in the front court, to zones two (2), three (3), or four (4).

A server can make the ball harder to hit by serving a floater, which usually has no spin to it.

A line serve is one hit to the sideline so that the defense has to run to the sideline retrieve it.



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