Scroll down and get schooled

Before you bump, set and spike your way to victory, you'll need to know some basics. Take a few moments to get familiar with the ins and outs of the court so that when you suit up, you'll be ready for whatever comes your way.

Court Dimensions

  • Playing Area
  • Playing Area

Lines on the Court

Be aware of all lines during play. Moved lines won't stop the action. A replay will be enforced if the ball's landing spot is undeterminable.

Lines on a court

Net Height

  • Net Height Men
  • Net Height Women


The Ball


To win a match a team must score more than its opponent in either a 1 game or in 2 out of 3 games

  • 1 Match Game:
    • First to 21 pts.
    • Must win by 2
    • No cap
    Best 2 Out of 3:
    • First to 21 pts. If a third game is needed it, it is played first to 15 pts.
    • Must win by 2
    • No cap

    If a 3rd game is needed the first team to 15 points wins.

  • Scoring

To win a rally

A rally is a number of hits back and forth between teams.

The serving team wins, scores a point and continues to serve when:

  • The ball lands in the receiving team's court
  • The ball lands on the sideline or on the baseline
  • The receiving team faults

The receiving team wins, scores a point earns right to serve:

  1. The serving team fails to serve
  2. The serving team fails to return the ball
  3. The ball lands in area that is out of play or any other fault is committed


  • Serving Fault
  • Out of Play Fault

state of play

The ball is in play from the time it's served until the ref declares it out. A fault occurs when the ball is hit, or lands outside of the court, or is caught by the net.

Ball Out of Play

From the time it lands or a fault is committed.

State of Play

Ball Out of Bounds

The ball is out when first contact is outside of the court.

State of Play

Ball in Bounds


  • When its first contact with the ground is on the playing court or the boundary line
  • The ball is in when first contact is on the baseline
State of Play

playing the ball

Team Contacts– Ideal sequence of hits is traditionally referred to as the bump, set and spike.

  • Each team has 3 contacts max to return the ball to the opposing team
  • No player can touch the ball twice in a row except during or after blocking the team’s first contact
  • Blocking counts as one of the team’s three contacts
  • After the block any player can make the first contact with the ball
Playing the Ball

Assisted Hit–Players cannot help teammates reach the ball.

However, a player about to commit a fault can be stopped or held back by a teammate.

Joust–When two opposing players make contact with the ball at the same time over the net.

  • Team receiving ball entitled to another 2 hits
  • If the ball lands out of bounds, the last team to touch the ball is at fault
Playing the Ball


Players can touch the ball with any part of the body. The ball cannot be held, lifted, pushed, caught, carried or thrown.


A Bump
Usually the first of the three allotted contacts, this strike is used to receive the ball from the opposing team

Gives teammates an opportunity to get under the ball and spot up to set the ball.


A Set–Usually the second of the three allotted contacts, this strike uses fingertips, not hands, to direct the ball upward.

  • Gives the last striker time to accurately spot the ball before attacking
  • Ball can be set anywhere in team’s court
  • Ball must be contacted with two hands at the same time
  • Ball can not rotate more than 1 1/2 times
  • Ball cannot visibly stop
  • Any set that carries over the net is a fault

If contacting the ball with one hand it must be cleanly hit with: The back of the hand from the wrist to the knuckles, or the heel of the palm of the hand (roll shot)

1-Handed placement of redirection of the ball with the fingers (a dink/knuckle strike or open hand tip) is a fault.



The ball may touch the net while crossing the net except during a serve. A serve that touches the net is a fault.

Ball Crossing The Net

A ball hit into the net is playable and may be recovered by the receiving team as long as it's done within the allotted three team contacts.

Ball At Net


Reaching beyond the net

  • Touching the ball beyond the net while blocking is allowed
  • Players can't interfere with opponents movements
  • Ok for hand(s) to pass beyond the net after an attack-hit, as long as the contact was made within team's playing space
Player At Net

Entering into opponent's playing area

  • If it doesn’t interfere with the opponent, players may partially or completely cross the center line below the net or outside the poles, either before, during or after a legal play of the ball.
  • Crossing the center line and interfering with an opponent during the continuation of play is a fault
Opponent Area