Be A Setter In Volleyball Learn How To Set A Ball For Your Hitters

Learn how to improve your volleyball setting body positioning and setter technique  

So You Want To Be A Setter...

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.

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 skill by focusing on the feet first.

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.

The Ready Position For The Setter In Volleyball

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.

Even if you’re left handed then you want to have your right foot slightly in front of the left and you should have both knees bent slightly.

This lower body position helps you maintain your balance, so that you can run to get to any ball.

Your Midsection And Core Positioning
For The Setter in Volleyball

Big 12 Oklahoma setter photo by Michael E. JohnstonBig 12 Oklahoma setter (photo by Michael E. Johnston)

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 should imagine having a stick that has been inserted in your back where your spine is.

This stick starts from the top of your neck and ends just at your tailbone and it keeps you from being able to twist your body or bend over at the waist.

To set the volleyball, once you have positioned yourself underneath it, you can only squat up and down, like you do when you sit down in a chair.

With your hands above your head,

  • you can only use your legs to get to the ball
  • you can only use your legs to get balanced under the ball

Your Arms: What To Do As A Setter In Volleyball

The ready position for your arms when you want to be a setter in volleyball is similar to when you run.

Your arms start at your sides slightly bent at your elbows in a 90 degree angle.

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.

As A Setter In Volleyball Your Hands Should...

The setter in volleyballThe setter in volleyball

Your goal is to have

  • both of your index and thumbs on each hand slightly one inch apart without touching each other at the tips with
  • your palms of both hands open and facing upwards towards the sky so your hands form the shape of the ball

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 the ball 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 setter in volleyball is for both of your palms to be turned up to the sky, which should form that cradle which fits perfectly around the ball.

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.

Now in your next volleyball practice, focus on using the correct technique, body positioning and timing while you do your reps so that you become a great volleyball setter.

Meet Ricci the Raccoon setter for the Volleybragswag All Beast team.Meet Ricci the Raccoon setter for the Volleybragswag All Beast team.


Set A Volleyball Correctly: A Beginner Guide To Perfect Setting
The Volleyball Setter Position: Who Leads The Team, Why and How
Volleyball Setters Setting Technique For Setters To Learn Quickly
Be A Setter in Volleyball: Learn How To Set A Ball For Your Hitters
The Setter Volleyball Player Calls The Plays To Run The Team's Offense
Setters Volleyball Set Options in Offense What Do Setters Set Hitters
The Setter Volleyball Position 5 Traits Good Setters Always Have
Setter Volleyball Tips For Players Who Run The Offense
Being a Left handed Volleyball Setter in the Front Row Has Advantages
Ways To Improve Your Volleyball Setter Training

  1. Improve Your Volleyball
  2.  ›
  3. Positions
  4.  ›
  5. The Setter
  6.  ›
  7. Be A Setter In Volleyball Learn How To Set A Ball For Your Hitters

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.

Follow me on Instagram @coach_apchap to improve your game even faster!

The Weekly Award-winning Las Vegas Volleyball Boot Camp Class Schedule


as the Volleyball Voice Boot Camp Classes receive the 2018 Nevada Recreation and Park Society award for

Best Sports Program in Nevada 

Boot Camp Volleyball Class Requirements

  • No online registration for Volleyball Voice Boot Camp classes
  • Arrive 15-20 minutes before class begins
  • Pay $10 at front desk
  • Kneepads mandatory
  • Classes close at 6:05, latecomers will not be admitted
  • You WILL sweat

Click for info on Semi-Private Training with Coach April

Private and Semi Private Lessons with Coach April
Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays