Rules of Volleyball
As with any recreational sport, you have to learn the rules of volleyball before you can play the game. Volleyball is an official Olympic sport and one of the most popular recreational sports in the world. Since the Summer Olympics are on the horizon, now is a great time to become more familiar with the rules of volleyball so you can be an informed observer during the Olympics games!
The rules of volleyball have not changed much since the game began in the late 1800s. Here are the basic rules of volleyball that are applied during competitive play:
Rules of Volleyball - The Basics
An official volleyball court is rectangular in shape and is 18 meters long by 9 meters wide. The court is divided into two equal sides, and a net is erected in the exact middle. The net rises to a height of 2.43 meters for men-s and co-ed games, and 2.24 meters for women-s play.
A regulation volleyball is made of leather, although sometimes synthetic leather is used. The circumference of the ball must be between 65 and 67 centimeters and it has to weigh between 260 and 280 grams.
Volleyball is played with two teams, one on each side of the net, and each team has six active players. The game starts with a serve, which is decided by a coin toss.
Rules of Volleyball - The Serve
The serving player stands behind the end line during the serve and has 8 seconds to get the job done. With the serve, the ball must go completely over the net and enter the opposing team-s side of the court. The server can perform the serve with an underhand or overhand swing.
The receiving team must return the serve, but they can only use a bump shot to send the ball back. The defensive team is not allowed to use a set or attack on a serve.
Rules of Volleyball - The Game
After a successful serve, the ball is volleyed back and forth over the net until a mistake is made. Each side can hit the ball a maximum of three times in their attempt to send it back over the net, but no one player can touch the ball two consecutive times. If the ball hits the net, it remains in play, but a player cannot touch the net in any way during game play.
Players can hit the ball with any part of their body, but generally the forearms and hands are used. Players can also engage in spiking and blocking to try to get the opposing team to miss the ball.
Rules of Volleyball - Scoring
Both the serving and receiving teams can score in volleyball. The serving team scores when the receiving team misses the ball or hits it out on a return attempt. The receiving team scores when the serving team does not serve successfully, misses the ball or hits it out.
A game of volleyball ends when one of the teams scores 25 points and has at least 2 points more than the other team.