It is considered a fault when a volleyball player is caught making contact with a ball to help it over the net. The only player allowed to make contact during service is the player who is serving the ball. By touching the ball before it goes to the other team, it directly impacts their ability to play defense.
Get to know some serving rules and you’ll do great when your team serves.
What Is An Illegal Serve in Volleyball
An illegal serve in volleyball is any service that results in a fault. Service faults can happen for a number of reasons:
- Violating the service order – Every player has their position on the court. This determines who will be serving next.
- The ball touches a player of the serving team – Whether the player was hit by accident or they attempted to help a serve over the net, it is a fault if there is any service contact.
- Stepping out of the service line – There is a designated service zone on the volleyball court where a player is allowed to be serving. This service area is past the end line, just outside of the court and is contained by the free zones.
- Hitting over a screen – Screening is when a player or group of players make it impossible for the opposing team to see the serve or or where the ball is headed.
Basic Rules For Serving in Volleyball
Serving is the act of putting the ball into play. Each player takes turns in the serving position. When the referee blows the whistle, they can hit the ball to the other team. Only one toss of the ball is allowed. Players are allowed to dribble the ball.
The player must hit the ball with one arm. The player is allowed to serve the ball however they please. The most common type of serves in volleyball are:
- Underhand serve – One of the most stable serving methods. A player puts the left foot forward and swings with their right arm. If a player’s dominant hand is their left, then they would step with their right foot and with their left hand.
- Overhand serve – A stronger style of serving that provides more power while trading away the consistency of hitting the ball straight. A regular overhand serve in volleyball is enough to help score a point.
- Jump serve – A more advanced technique. It depends mostly on a player’s jump serve approach. Players will toss the ball high, run, jump, and use their hitting arm to swing. The goal of doing jump serves is to get more aces, as it has more power than any other serve.
- Topspin serve – A topspin serve can make serve receive especially frustrating. The intention is to create a difficult first hit for the opposing team.
- Float serve – Being able to perform float serves makes it difficult for the opposing team to play defense. They’re hard to read because they are unpredictable. A float serve can give the other team a messy first hit.
Can a legal serve touch the net?
Yes, a serve is still considered legal if it touches the net. So long as the serve had proper execution, did not violate service order, or went “out”, then it’s okay if the ball makes contact with the net. As long as the ball did not fall back onto the same side, it is legal.
There is a crossing space that the ball must stay within. It is measured by the antennas on both sides of the net. If the ball touches either of the antennas, it is a fault.
Are you allowed to jump when serving in volleyball?
Jump serves are one of the most effective ways to hit a ball over the net. So long as the player does not cross the serving line, then the jump serve is legal. There is an extra cost associated with executing this technique. It’s difficult for players to maintain a consistent jump serve, so there is a lot of room for error.
Although they can hit the ball harder, they are more susceptible to a foot fault, where the server steps on the back line unintentionally.
How many seconds do you get to serve?
According to FIVB volleyball rules, a player must hit the ball within 8 seconds after the referee blows the whistle for service. If the server does not begin serving the ball and it is not in play within that time limit, the point goes to the opposing team.
Do you get 2 serves in volleyball?
Unlike Tennis, Volleyball does not have first and second serves. You get one chance to toss the ball and put it into play. This remains true no matter what kind of fault caused your team to lose service.
Can you serve anywhere in volleyball?
There are two serving areas that a player must be mindful of. The first is where they stand when they’re serving. The second is the serving zone they’re targeting.
A serve must be initiated behind the service line and from the back right side of the court. Every player who is serving must serve from the same position.
A serve can be directed at any serving zone on the opposing team’s court. So long as the player does not fault the ball, they can hit it anywhere on the other team’s court.