The Down Ball in Volleyball Is A Hard Attack Hit With No Approach Jump

Down Ball In Volleyball | Improve Your Volley` ``

The Down Ball in Volleyball Is A Hard Attack Hit With No Approach Jump

The "down ball in volleyball" is a volleyball term that hitters use for attacking the ball on the court without using a spike approach jump to score points.


Today, I tackle the mechanics of the down ball, a hitting skill that gives your game a strategic edge when you don't have time to or don't plan on...jumping to attack the ball.



Like every other technique in volleyball, mastering the Down Ball requires time, effort, and practice. But don't worry! I'm here to guide you each step of the way. The insight I provide goes beyond just hitting the ball. You'll also gain a deep understanding of when to effectively use the down ball in volleyball.


It's about hitting the ball with force, but keeping your feet on the ground, rather than launching into a full-on spike approach.

No jump, just a solid, powerful hit when there's no time for a traditional spike.

The down ball is how you can attack a ball over the net without using a spike approach jump as a first, second or third contact in an attempt to make a point for your team.




When you use the "down ball in volleyball" hitting technique...as a hitter you can choose to actually attack the ball for a point while keeping your feet on the ground and not jumping to contact the ball (for the down ball) or jumping and wiping off the blocker's arm (for the wipe). 

Beginners use the down ball to attack and learn to attack before they get the timing right to add the spike approach to lift themselves in the air.




A down ball in volleyball can be initiated during any of the three contacts a team is allotted to get the ball back into the opposing team's court.


Let me explain...


A Volleyball Term For Attacking
The Down Ball in Volleyball


Down ball in Volleyball - a down ball in volleyball is an attack made by a player who spikes or hits the ball keeping both of their feet on the floor and uses the traditional arm swing to get a hard driven ball into the opposing team's court.


A down ball in volleyball can be initiated during any of the three contacts a team is allotted to get the ball back into the opposing team's court.

For example, although rarely seen in indoor volleyball a beach volleyball player can hit an easy serve back into the serving team's court by attacking with a down ball in volleyball.



A player usually chooses to hit a down ball because for some reason they don't have time to make a spike approach before hitting the ball.



When team B's blocker's see that Team A's spiker isn't using a spike approach to hit the ball over the net, the blockers usually call out to their team "down ball" and transition off the net to get ready to attack.

A "down ball in volleyball" has been translated to mean that a hitter is "staying down on the ground" or is "keeping their feet on the ground" to hit or spike a ball.


Frequenly Asked Questions About The Down Ball in Volleyball


What is a "down ball" in volleyball?


A "down ball" in volleyball is a forceful attack made by a player who spikes or hits the ball while keeping both of their feet on the floor. It's done without making a traditional spike approach jump to attack the ball.


When should a player perform a "down ball"


A player typically opts for a "down ball" when there isn’t enough time or space for a full spike approach. It is a rapid response to keep the play moving and can be used during any of the three contacts a team is permitted to make with the ball.


Why is it called a "down ball"?


The term "down ball" is derived from the fact that the hitter stays grounded aka "down", i.e., they keep their feet on the floor while hitting or spiking the ball.




Although both are typically sent over the net without the use of a full approach jump, a "down ball" is hit with a full arm swing and at a higher contact point. In contrast, a "free ball" is a pass sent over the net with an easier trajectory, often used to prevent a faulty play when a setup for attack is not possible.


How is a "down ball" different from a "free ball" in volleyball?


Although both are sent over the net without the use of a full approach jump, a "down ball" is hit with a full arm swing and at a higher contact point.

In contrast, a "free ball" is a pass using your platform held at the level of your mid body and sent over the net with an easier higher  trajectory making it an easy ball to intercept or pass by the opposing team, often used to save a play when a typical overhead attack is not possible.


How can I improve my "down ball" technique?



The term "down ball" comes from the fact that the hitter stays grounded aka "down", i.e., they keep their feet on the floor while hitting or spiking the ball.



First, ensure you maintain a controlled arm swing to direct the ball accurately.

Second, consistent practice with varied down ball scenarios (like having to hit different sets that're very high or very low can help you improve arm swing speed and  precision hitting.

Lastly, regular game-situation drills and receiving feedback from a coach or an experienced player can also help you significantly to improving this skill.

Remember, the aim is to catch your opponent off guard with a swift and effective attack without needing a jump spike. So, pay close attention to the game situation and your positioning on the court.


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Follow me on Pinterest Volleybragswag to improve your game even faster!

I share alot of individual, partner and easy-to-do volleyball serving drills we do in class with my followers.

Many of these volleyball practice drills you can do at home by yourself or try at your next practice with your teammates.

If you're a B team or JV player trying to make varsity next year...your goal should be to complete 1000 reps a day of at least three of the basic skills on your own...volleyball passing, serving and setting should be at the top of the list. 




Where Do You Go From Here?


Where do you need to go now? Here are three options: 

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You might like these
pages on terms, slang, jargon and lingo in the pages below!



  • Improve Your Volleyball Performance with Private Volleyball Coach April Chapple
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