Volleyball 101: A Beginner’s Guide to Spike, Set, and Serve
June 29, 2023

Volleyball is an exciting and dynamic team sport that combines athleticism, strategy, and teamwork. Whether you’re looking to try a new hobby or join a recreational league, understanding the basics of volleyball will set you on the path to enjoying this fast-paced game. Here is a beginner’s guide on fundamental rules, positions, and skills needed to start volleyball:


The Basics and Rules of the Game

Volleyball is played on a rectangular court divided by a net. Each team comprises six players, with three players on the front row and three on the back row. The goal is to send the ball over the net, rally it back and forth, and ultimately ground it on the opponent’s side of the court.

The game is played in sets, usually best of three or five, with each set played to 25 points. To score a point, the ball must touch the ground within the boundaries of the opponent’s court, or the opponent makes a fault (e.g., hitting the ball out of bounds or committing a violation).

Positions on the Court

Volleyball positions are divided into three main categories: hitters, setters, and defenders. The front row typically consists of two outside hitters and one middle blocker, while the back row has two defensive specialists and a setter. Players rotate clockwise after winning the serve, ensuring everyone has a chance to play all positions.


The serve is the starting action of each rally. Stand behind the end line and toss the ball into the air. As it descends, use your hand to strike it over the net into the opponent’s court. You can serve underhand or overhand (the latter is usually more powerful but requires practice).

Passing and Receiving

To set up an attack, players must pass the ball accurately to the setter. This technique, called “bumping” or “forearm pass,” involves making a platform with your forearms to cushion the ball’s impact. When receiving a serve or attack, focus on a clean pass to your setter for an organized offense.


The setter is a crucial player responsible for setting the ball up for an attack. To perform a set, position your hands above your forehead, fingers spread, and push the ball upward and forward with precise control. This gives your hitters a better chance to spike.


The spike, or attack, is the highlight of volleyball. Hitters approach the net and jump to slam the ball down into the opponent’s court. To spike effectively, time your jump, aim for open spaces, and utilize a combination of power and finesse.


Blocking is a defensive move performed by front-row players. It involves jumping at the net to intercept and redirect an opponent’s attack. The goal is to block the ball back into the opponent’s court or alter the trajectory, making it easier for your defenders to control.

Communication and Teamwork

Volleyball is a team sport that thrives on communication and collaboration. Effective teamwork enhances performance and makes the game more enjoyable. Remember to call out plays, share information, and support your teammates throughout the match.


Now that you have the basics gather your friends or find a local volleyball club to get started. So, grab your knee pads, lace up your shoes, and let the games begin. Volleyball awaits you with thrilling rallies and a vibrant community of players ready to welcome you into the world of this fantastic sport.