Thursday, May 25th, 2017

A Well-Oiled Machine: Volleyball Offensive Positions

Published on September 17, 2009 by   ·   No Comments

One of many articles outlining a few helpful volleyball-related terms, to help those new to the game figure out what the heck the rest of us are talking about. Covered here: attacks (front and back row), offense and the setter.

Attack – front row: Usually this involves a hitter taking an approach, jumping, and hitting the ball with an open hand. If the hitter doesn’t have time for an approach or the set isn’t on target s/he may stay on the ground. Also called a “hit” or “spike.”

Attack – back row: Back row players (except for a libero) may attack a set provided they begin their jump (i.e. their feet leave the ground) behind the 10-foot line. They may land in front of the 10-foot line without a penalty. This play may be referred to as a “10” or if the set is in the middle of the court it may be called a “pipe.” If the attacker takes off in front of the 10-foot line the referee will call an illegal back row attack and the other team will be awarded a point.

Offense : Offense refers to the system being used to attack the ball, usually a 6-2 (two separate setters, each one setting from the back court) or a 5-1 (one setter who sets 100% of the time, no matter what position s/he is on the court). Some beginner teams may run a 4-2 (two separate setters, each one setting from the front court). The offense is setup based on each team’s abilities to ensure an effective pass, a capable set, and a strong attack.

Setter: If all goes well, the setter should be the person taking the second ball (out of three) every time, and s/he should be setting from the target position. The setter is often compared to a football quarterback because s/he calls plays and coordinates the motion on the court. A setter should try to be aware of who the various hitters are in each rotation so that s/he knows who will be the most effective attacker in any given situation. One of the highest priorities when arranging players for a serve receive is to make sure the setter has a clear path to the target area.

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