photo by nraupach
The volleyball block is the squad's first line of defense against an
The block in volleyball is one of the most dynamic and most exciting
parts of this crazy game we love to play.
At the beginning of a rally, after the whistle blows and your team serves
the ball into the opposing team's court, every front row player
on your team should be focused on keeping your opponent from
Once the ball hits the floor, or hits a blockers hands and goes out of
Knowing how to put up an effective volleyball block will keep the
opposing team from scoring points from their front row while they are on
At the beginning of a rally, if your team is on defense, after the referee
blows their whistle and your team serves the ball into the other
team's court, the players in zone 2, zone 3 and zone 4 on your side
should be laser focused on keeping your opponent from spiking
In order to do that the front row players need to start by checking their
upper and lower body blocking ready position so that they can be as
efficient and as fast as they can while moving laterally, which
As a volleyball blocker, you want to be able to position yourself in a way
that you can present a barrier by using your arms and hands to deflect
any hit or spike attempts from an opposing team's spiker back into their
So you are in fact trying to make yourself into a human wall, if you
This is just another way that I like to define the volleyball block.
As always when I talk about or coach volleyball skills to players, I like to
start at the bottom, with what you're supposed to do with your feet.
What should your feet be doing and where should they be positioned?
You want to start in a balanced position with your feet so that they are
parallel to each other.
They should be perpendicular to the net so that you can
maintain a balanced position that will allow you to move quickly to your
right, to your left or backwards off the net to get back in defense or to
transition so you can begin your spike approach if necessary.
You want to be in a position to be able to move laterally along the net
quickly, which means your knees should be in a slight squat.
The ideal position for your lower body is to have your hips, midsection
and upper body “squared to the net.”
Speaking of timing, during your block, you want to wait
until, just before the opposing player spikes the ball, then you jump.
As you jump, you want to extend your hands, arms and shoulders over
the net or if you can’t reach over, then as high as possible in order to
grab the ball.
Keep your hands spread and your fingers wide apart in order to catch or
"block" the ball.
Once you block the ball, your widespread fingers and straight arms
which are backed by your solid rigid wrists should just deflect the ball
back into the middle of your opponents court.
Let me repeat.
That’s the best way to think about how you should be blocking a
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