Ten Steps On How To Bump A Volleyball To Maximize Your Serve Receive 

Learn to bump a volleyball so that you get the ball to your setter consistently by moving quickly to where you anticipate where the ball will be.

The pass is the first contact a player makes when their team is receiving the serve of the opposing team so its important to know how to bump a volleyball correctly.The pass is the first contact a player makes when their team is receiving the serve of the opposing team so its important to know how to bump a volleyball correctly.


When you learn how to bump a volleyball, you are learning how to transfer the ball from one player to another or over the net

  • without letting the ball come to a complete stop
  • while clasping both hands together at the wrists and 
  • contacting the ball above your wrists and below your elbows on your forearms 

Whether you call it the "volleyball bump", the "serve receive", the "underhand pass" or the forearm pass every player needs to master the art of controlling the ball. 

To control the ball and deliver it to your intended target consistently (most often this is to your setter) you need to improve the accuracy of your forearm pass.


Learn How To Bump A Volleyball In Ten Steps


Here are my 10 volleyball tips you can use to maximize your serve receive and passing skills


Present your platform by wrapping your left hand around your right fist, thumbs pointing straight down to the ground. This positions your elbows and arms in a straight platform.Present your platform by wrapping your left hand around your right fist, thumbs pointing straight down to the ground. This positions your elbows and arms in a straight platform.


1. Keep your feet shoulder-width apart, with your legs slightly bent.

Having your right foot 1-2 inches in front of the left lets you move quickly in any direction. 


Passing Position: Before the whistle and while you're in serve receive you should watch the server and talk to teammates about passing responsibilities. Have your hands on knees. (photo April Chapple)Prep Passing Position: Before the whistle and while you're in serve receive you should watch the server and talk to teammates about passing responsibilities. Have your hands on knees. (photo April Chapple)
After the whistle, once the server tosses the ball take your hands off knees and be ready to move quickly to where you think the ball will land in your court. (photo April Chapple)After the whistle, once the server tosses the ball take your hands off knees and be ready to move quickly to where you think the ball will land in your court. (photo April Chapple)
Once you beat the ball to where you thinks its going to land then quickly put wrists together with thumbs pointing to the ground to create your platform. (photo April Chapple)Once you beat the ball to where you thinks its going to land then quickly put wrists together with thumbs pointing to the ground to create your platform. (photo April Chapple)

How To Bump A Volleyball
How Do You Create Your Platform?


2. Create your platform by wrapping your left hand around your right fist, with your thumbs pointing straight down to the ground.

This positions your elbows and arms in a straight platform.


How Do You Create Your Platform? By wrapping your left hand around your right fist, with your thumbs pointing straight down to the ground.How Do You Create Your Platform? By wrapping your left hand around your right fist, with your thumbs pointing straight down to the ground.


3. Contact the ball on your forearms.

Check that your thumbs are always pointing to the ground, which helps you maintain the straight platform needed to pass the ball. 


Passing in Volleyball: When Passing Face The Net, Drop The Inside Shoulder and Angle Your Platform


4. Keep your elbows straight while in serve receive.

Straight elbows maintain a wider platform, giving you maximum control of the ball. 


Keep your elbows straight by pointing your thumbs to the ground when you bump a volleyball. (photo April Chapple)Keep your elbows straight by pointing your thumbs to the ground when you bump a volleyball. (photo April Chapple)


5. Press both wrists together when passing, without breaking them apart no matter how hard or easy the serve.

Make ball contact above the wrists and below the elbows. Contacting the ball on your wrists won't allow you to control the ball. 


Press both wrists together when passing, without breaking them apart no matter how hard or easy the serve.Press both wrists together when passing, without breaking them apart no matter how hard or easy the serve.


6. Keep both arms together when you learn how to bump a volleyball.

Keeping them together instead of breaking them apart and passing with one arm helps guide the ball better to the target.


7. Square your shoulders to the target.

Face your body to the net and angle your platform towards the target before contacting the ball. This eliminates adjusting your arms once making contact with the ball. 


8. Remember your goal is to keep from swinging your arms during the serve receive.

Most serves in high school, club or college are fast enough so very little additional arm movement is needed for the ball to reach the target. 


Don't swing your arms when you pass the ball. Keeping your platform too close to your body forces you to swing. Instead keep your platform a ball's distance away from your body.  


9. Finish your pass with your serve receive platform below your shoulders not above your head.

This allows you to control the ball when keeping your arms and shoulders within your body range. 


10. Move your feet first to position yourself behind the ball as much as possible.

Get your body behind the ball instead of reaching with your arms. "If you've heard your coach say "pass with your feet first"" they mean to let your feet not your arms be first in guiding you in serve receive. 


Beat the ball to where you think its going to land in your court and get there before the ball does instead of timing the ball and getting to the spot at the same time.


You need to learn how to bump a volleyball in order to make your freshman, JV or high school varsity team and it's important for you to learn how to move quickly to get to the ball. 


Thanks for visiting.  Be sure to check out more of my volleyball articles by clicking one of the links below!  (April Chapple)

This has been an important message by your favorite volleyball coach! That's me!!

Thanks for visiting.

Be sure to check out more of my volleyball articles by clicking one of the links below!  (April Chapple)


Do You Follow Me on Instagram?


Follow me on Instagram @coach_apchap 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. 




How To Play Volleyball: 
Where Do You Go From Here?


Your three options are: 

  1. You can learn more about Volleyball Passing by visiting the Related Links below.  
  2. Follow the suggested reading on our Sitemap page   Learning How To Play (Sitemap)
  3. Or visit the pages in the How to Play Volleyball section in the drop down menu at the top of the page to get started. 
  4. Before leaving this page Say "Hi" to  Ms. Resee the Kangaroo, wearing the #11 jersey below. She's a left side hitter with precision passing and a member of the VolleyBragSwag All Beast Third team. 
Say Say "Hi" to Ms. Resee the Kangaroo, wearing the #11 jersey below. She's a left side hitter with precision passing and a member of the VolleyBragSwag All Beast Third team.

Explore More About How to Bump A Volleyball
and Passing Information


Check Out More Volleyball Bump and 
Passing Information





  1. Improve Your Volleyball
  2.  ›
  3. How To Play Volleyball
  4.  ›
  5. Passing in Volleyball: What, When Where, Why and How To Serve Receive
  6.  ›
  7. Ten Steps On How To Bump A Volleyball To Maximize Your Serve Receive



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