As an outside volleyball hitter one of the smartest things you can do is.....to mix up your attack and NOT hit the ball hard every time you go up for a spike.
Sounds weird, right?
After all, the whole idea behind spiking a ball, is to hit the ball hard right? Wrong. You want to pick the right moments. Check this out.
Yes, I know that sounds contradictory...a hitter who doesn't hit the ball, what is that?.
Well, as funny as it sounds, this strategy may be the one that turns you into one of the savviest point scoring players on your team.
Mixing up your shots is one of the smartest things you as an outside hitter can do to improve your hitting efficiency.
The smart outside volleyball hitter will mix up shots so that it forces the opposing team's block to keep guessing about what's going to happen next.
Blockers will have to keep figuring out what kind of defense they need to use against the hitter.
That's all I did for hours in practice. Hit, hit, hit and hit some more.
But a smart player who I looked up to, taught me the importance of creating a variety of different shots to use in different situations.
Sooner or later it happens to every outside hitter.
Sooner or later against one particular team your spikes just won't work.
...anything can happen.
So you need a plan B.
When that day comes and your normally hard hits aren't working for you, how are you going to be effective?
How are you going to score the points that your team expects you to?
That's why in practice during spike training, you should do a lot of drills that teach you how to hit the ball hard, but you should also practice
When I say "mix up your shots" that means you develop a "bag of tools" or a variety of ways to attack the ball.
So that when the block stops your power game, or you want to really keep the opposing team guessing, you have the option of using your finesse game to still score points against the opposing team.
The best way to decide when to start mixing up your shots, is to get in the habit just before you spike the ball of looking to see where the opposing team's defensive players are positioned in their court.
You should identify how far back their defensive players are when your other teammates are hitting or better yet, ask your defensive players to tell you how far back the other team's defensive players are playing or if any of them are playing defense right behind their blockers.
This is a fast way that you can get clues. Use your teammates to help you.
Get them to be your eyes since your back row will see the opposing team's court easier than you will.
This is how you can have your back row players help you develop effective attack strategies as an outside hitter in volleyball.
Use them to ask questions about the other team's defense. They aren't there just to dig.
They can help you out as you rotate through the front row.
You don't have to rely on just your coach to tell you where to hit the ball or what spaces are open.
So remember, if you've been blocked a couple of times in a row, as an outside volleyball hitter feel free to ask your back row players for some feedback on where to attack the ball.
Got it? Good! Where do you need to go now? Here are three options:
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