A Volleyball Dig Tutorial With Digging Basics For Defensive Players 

The dig is the technique used by a player in defense to keep the ball off your team's court floor once it has been attacked by an opposing team's hitter into your court. 

The action of digging a ball is modeled after shoveling or digging something out of the ground. 

By digging a ball, a player is keeping it from

  • hitting the ground so the opposing team scores
  • creates an opportunity for your team to counterattack and run an offense in an attempt to score during a rally 

A Volleyball Dig Tutorial
Where Do You Need To Be To Standing To Dig A Ball? 

To dig the volleyball you need to know where to stand in the court.

You can't dig what you can't see. 

So, you need to place yourself in a position where you can watch the opposing hitter hit the ball into your court.

As a digger, its your job to place yourself in the path of the oncoming ball that's been hit by an opposing team's hitter. 

In order to do that (depending on the defense your team is running) you need to stand outside of the block where you can see the hitter hit the ball. 

That means you need to be standing outside of the shadow of your blockers but in the path of the oncoming ball. 

Volleyball Dig Tutorial
What's a platform and where do you contact the ball on your arms?

Where do you contact the ball on your arms to make a good dig?

In volleyball terminology, the area on your arms  used to contact and control balls that are below your waist is called your "platform." 

You want to contact the ball on your platform above your wrists and below the inside of your elbows. 

Both arms are held together at the wrists so your arms form a flat surface for the ball to bounce off of.

To keep both wrists held together, a digger places a closed fist inside the palm of the other hand and wraps the fingers around the closed fists so both thumbs are now together side by side. 

By keeping both thumbs together and pointed to the ground, keeps your elbows and arms straight throughout the entire digging action. 

At the same time, you present your platform in front of you, you block the path of the ball so it contacts your forearms and is deflected up in the air towards the middle of your court close to your team's ten foot line. 

Volleyball Dig Tutorial
Where does the ball contact your platform?

Your arms, outstretched in front of you and held together keeping elbows straight, contact the bottom third of the ball so its deflected in the

air ...This way 

a) you keep the ball from hitting the floor so the other team cannot score a point

b) your dig, sets up the opportunity for your team to counterattack and try and get the ball to the opposing team's court floor so you can score the point

To make the correct contact on the ball we teach our players to keep their shoulders in front of their knees when you are digging. 

This helps you lean forward enough to insure the ball hits the right spot on your platform. 

Volleyball Dig Tutorial
Lower Body and Hips During the Dig

Just before you dig a ball, you lower your hips so they are below the level of the oncoming ball.

When your hips are lower than the ball then when you dig the ball it will go up in the air.  

If your hips are too high then you have less control of the ball and the ball will shoot out straight instead of up in the air.

When you dig a ball it needs to go up in the air so the setter or another teammate can get to it to make a play. 

How To Play Volleyball: 
Where Do You Go Now?

Okay here's where you need to go now! There are three options: 

  1. Learn more about Digging and Defenseby clicking 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 Miss O.I Gotchu the Octopus wearing the #8 jersey below.  Miss O.I. is the libero for the All Beast VolleyBragSwag All Star team.

Related Links: 

Three Volleyball Digging Tips To Improve Your Defense Volleyball Game 

Learn To Dig Volleyball Spikes Like They Do In College

Volleyball Defense: What To Do After You've Served The Opposing Team

Dig A Volleyball Using The Barrel Roll Digging and Defense Technique

A Volleyball Dig Tutorial With Digging Basics For Defensive Players 

Volleyball Libero Facts About Setting Digging and Playing Backrow 

10 Defense Volleyball Questions On Making Digs and Defending Better

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