Volleyball Terminologies For Blocking Terms Used In Defense At The Net

These important volleyball terminologies used for the various blocking skills used in defense at the net like sealing the net, stuff block, and read blocking.

These blockers volleyball terminologies are used to describe specific technical aspects of this defensive skill. (Ralph Arvesen)These blockers volleyball terminologies are used to describe specific technical aspects of this defensive skill. (Ralph Arvesen)

These blockers volleyball terminologies are used to describe specific technical aspects of this defensive skill used by players when they try to stop an attack hit from an opposing team.

Volleyball Terminologies:
Seal The Net


When you "seal the net" it means that when you are in the middle of your block, while you are jumping, you need to keep your shoulders, chest, your underarms, upper body including your chest, abs and hips parallel to the net, all while keeping as little space as possible between you and the net...without touching it.


The photo above shows a great picture of volleyball players sealing the net with their block which you can see very well from this side view.

Can you see how little space there is between their blocking hands, arms and bodies and the net?

There's very little. Each player's armpits are as close to the net as possible without touching it. 


During your block jump you keep your arms and hands as close to the net without touching it to prevent any chance of the ball slipping in between (Ralph Arvesen)During your block jump you keep your arms and hands as close to the net without touching it to prevent any chance of the ball slipping in between (Ralph Arvesen)

They have successfully done their job and even on the way down from their block jump they keep their arms and hands as close to the net without touching it to prevent any chance of the ball slipping in between them and the net on their side.


Volleyball Terminologies: 
Read Blocking

Read blocking occurs when a blocker has been assigned a particular hitter to block and as the play develops they follow, or read where their assigned hitter. (Ralph Arvesen)Read blocking occurs when a blocker has been assigned a particular hitter to block and as the play develops they follow, or read where their assigned hitter. (Ralph Arvesen)


Read blocking occurs when a blocker has been assigned a particular hitter to block and as the play develops they follow, or read where their assigned hitter is going to attack the ball and their job is to follow that player no matter where she is and to block her.

The read block in volleyball occurs most often in higher levels of competition and in beach volleyball where a blocker will read the hitter in an attempt to anticipate how to block them or to decide what area of the court they will take away from that hitter.

The other blocking volleyball system that leaves less decision-making to the player and more to the coach is where the coach determines what area of the court all the blockers will cover or take away, instead of the player.


Especially in NCAA competition it takes time and plenty of drills and reps for college volleyball players to become good at reading the block in volleyball. (Matt Van Winkle)Especially in NCAA competition it takes time and plenty of drills and reps for college volleyball players to become good at reading the block in volleyball. (Matt Van Winkle)

It's usually the coach that will decide volleyball blocking strategies which include deciding whether his/her team will block cross court against the opposing team or if only some of the coach's players will be responsible for sticking to this game plan that was established off the court or before the game.

Especially in NCAA competition it takes time and plenty of drills and reps for college volleyball players to become good at reading the block in volleyball.


Volleyball Terminologies: 
Stuff Block

A stuff block describes a type of block in volleyball that was so efficiently performed that it didn't allow the hitter enough time to really hit the ball. (Mark Shaiken)A stuff block describes a type of block in volleyball that was so efficiently performed that it didn't allow the hitter enough time to really hit the ball. (Mark Shaiken)

What's a stuff block?

A stuff block describes a type of block in volleyball that was so efficiently performed that it didn't allow the hitter enough time to really hit the ball.


The blocker was able to penetrate their hands so far over the net that they literally The blocker was able to penetrate their hands so far over the net that they literally "stuffed" the ball back into the opposing team's court leaving the attacker no court to hit to. (Al Case)

The blocker was able to penetrate their hands so far over the net that they literally "stuffed" the ball back into the opposing team's court leaving the hitter no court to hit to.


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