When I teach players how to be a setter in volleyball I always like
to start with the lower body.
Specifically, I'll start with the feet and then I work my way up the body,
basically breaking up the setting skill by body part.
This way, when you are by yourself and practicing how to set a
volleyball and you don’t have a coach, you can check your own form
and technique to see if you're performing this skill correctly.
photo by Luomen
When setting a ball alot of people think that the most important thing
to focus on is the upper body. I always start coaching the setting
Sure, you set the volleyball with your hands but, if you can’t get to the
ball and if you don't have your body correctly positioned underneath
the ball first, then it won’t matter what you do with your hands because
you won’t be able to set the ball.
When you’re in the ready position, it means that your feet should be
planted shoulder width apart so you are in a balanced position able to
move forwards, backwards or to either side quickly.
I’m right-handed so I was taught to have my right foot a few inches in
front of my left foot.
This lower body position is key to being a great setter in volleyball
because it helps you maintain your balance, so that you can run
to get to any ball.
This is what I tell my younger girls, for the correct positioning of their
midsection, when you want to be a setter in volleyball, you
This stick starts from the top of your neck and ends just at your tail
bone and it keeps you from being able to twist your body or bend over
at the waist.
With your hands above your head,
Your arms start at your sides slightly bent at your elbows in a 90 degree
When the ball comes within arm's length above your head, let’s
say two to three feet above it, you want to quickly bring both arms up in
front of you and as your arms come up, bring them closer together.
Your goal is to have
This way your hands create a cradle where the ball will settle into when
you contact it above your forehead.
This cradle that you’ve formed is what you use to accompany or lift the
ball back into the air towards your intended target.
One key to remember is that as your arms move back up to the sky with
the ball cradled in your hands you want to keep your hands in the shape
of a triangle for as long as you can. This way you have control of the ball.
Just to double check, the correct hand position when you're a
Both of your index fingers and thumbs of each hand are not touching
each other but are very close as they form the shape of a loose triangle
which you should place like a window right at the top of your forehead
where your hairline is.