Tools for volleyball coaches

Vital Heynen's Clinic for the NVVO

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Saturday the 21st of May 2016, Vital Heynen demonstrated a number of drills to illustrate the type of drills he uses a lot during the warming up phase of his practices. This demonstration was part of a clinic for the NVVO (Dutch association of volleyball coaches) that he and Bert De Cuyper gave.

For this reason, this collection of drills doesn't form an actual practice plan, but is a set of related drills.

18x Section: Warming-up 17x Serve reception: General 16x Basics: Standing spike 16x Serving: Underhand serve 12x Drill type: Game phase in isolation ...

1. "Silly Games"

1.1. A ball for everyone

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'A ball for everyone'

All four players are holding a ball. A underhand serves to B. B tosses his ball up, passes the serve to C and catches his ball again. C tosses his ball up, sets the ball passed by D, and catches his ball again. D tosses his ball up, spikes C's set and catches his ball again.

The drill is over after the first successful series. Players change positions after each failed series.

Jumping is prohibited because the drill is meant as a warming-up drill.

Variations:

  • B, C, and D play A's ball by bouncing it off their ball.
  • A collects all four balls. The balls that B, C, and D are holding are also passed along after tossing them.

1.2. Collecting

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Collecting'

A stands on a mat next to the ball cart and underhand serves to B. B passes, C sets, and D spikes the ball back to A. A has to catch this ball without stepping off the mat. Before he catches the ball, he serves the next ball to B. A is not allowed to drop any of the balls that he has caught, so he has to find a way to keep hold of them.

The drill is over when A was able to keep hold of a predetermined number of balls. Players change positions after each failed series.

Jumping is prohibited because the drill is meant as a warming-up drill.

1.3. Warming up with chairs

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Warming up with chairs'

A underhand serves the ball, B passes the ball with one foot on top of chair, C sets the ball, and D spikes the ball while standing.

The drill is over after the first successful series. Players change positions after each failed series.

Jumping is prohibited because the drill is meant as a warming-up drill.

Variations:

  • B passes the ball with a chair and D spikes with a chair.
  • B, C, and D each play the ball with a chair.
  • B, C, and D each play the ball with a chair. A has to catch the spiked ball while sitting on a chair.

1.4. Precise spiking

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Precise spiking'

A underhand serves to B. B tosses his ball up, passes A's ball to C, and passes the tossed ball to D. C sets to D. D spikes both balls over the net to A. D has to aim both spikes because A must catch them using two upside-down cones.

The drill is over after the first successful series. Players change positions after each failed series.

Jumping is prohibited because the drill is meant as a warming-up drill.

1.5. Warming up with synchronous volleyball

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Warming up with synchronous volleyball'

A and B underhand serve simultaneously and step onto the court to catch the spiked balls. C and D pass towards each other diagonally, set the balls diagonally, and spike them to A and B.

The drill is over after the first successful series. Players change positions after each failed series.

Jumping is prohibited because the drill is meant as a warming-up drill.

Variations:

  • A and B catch the balls using an upside-down cone.
  • Instead of serving, A and B play the ball over the net using their feet.

1.6. Precise tipping

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Precise tipping'

A underhand serves to B. B tosses his ball up, passes the serve to C, and plays the tossed ball to D. C sets to D. D tips both balls to A. Meanwhile, A has moved towards the net and sat down with his back to the net. A has to catch both tips while remaining seated.

The drill is over after the first successful series. Players change positions after each failed series.

Jumping is prohibited because the drill is meant as a warming-up drill.

1.7. Spike towards trampoline

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Spike towards trampoline'

A underhand serves the ball to B, B passes, C sets, and D spikes the ball while standing in such a way that it bounces off the trampoline (T). D catches the ball before it hits the ground.

The drill is over after the first successful series. Players change positions after each failed series.

Jumping is prohibited because the drill is meant as a warming-up drill.

1.8. Pass into the net

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Pass into the net'

A underhand serves the ball to B, B passes into the net, C sets the ball that bounces back from the net, and D spikes the ball over the net while standing.

The drill is over after the first successful series. Players change positions after each failed series.

Jumping is prohibited because the drill is meant as a warming-up drill.

1.9. Synchronously passing into the net

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Synchronously passing into the net'

A and B simultaneously underhand serve a ball to C and D. C and D play these balls into the net diagonally, set the balls that come back from the net to each other, and spike them over the net.

The drill is over after the first successful series. Players change positions after each failed series.

Jumping is prohibited because the drill is meant as a warming-up drill.

1.10. Two-sided synchronous passing into the net

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Two-sided synchronous passing into the net'

A and B simultaneously underhand serve the ball to C and D. C and D pass the ball into the net. A and B set the balls that come back from the net to C and D. C and D spike them over the net.

The drill is over after the first successful series. Players change positions after each failed series.

Jumping is prohibited because the drill is meant as a warming-up drill.

1.11. Spiking via the net

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Spiking via the net'

A underhand serves the ball to B. B tosses his own ball into the air, passes the serve to C and subsequently passes the ball he tossed towards D. C sets B's ball to D. D spikes both balls via the top of the net.

The drill is over after the first successful series. Players change positions after each failed series.

Jumping is prohibited because the drill is meant as a warming-up drill.

Variations:

  • B holds a pole and passes the ball to C using this pole.
  • A is holding a pole as well and uses this to play the ball spiked by D backwards. D has to catch this ball before it touches the ground.

1.12. Serving via the wall

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Serving via the wall'

A underhand serves the ball over the net via the wall. B or C passes the ball to D. D sets the ball towards the player that didn't pass. This player spikes the ball over the net.

The drill is over after the first successful series. Players change positions after each failed series.

Jumping is prohibited because the drill is meant as a warming-up drill.

2. Warming up using the whole court

2.1. Bumping with assignments

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Bumping with assignments'

The players bump the ball back and forth in pairs while moving across the court. Meanwhile, they have to perform the following assignments:

  • The ball has to bounce on the chair
  • The ball has to be played via the net
  • Both players have to cross underneath the net
  • The ball has to be played via the net again
  • The ball has to be played in the basket

2.2. Chaos (Six against six with two balls)

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Chaos (Six against six with two balls)'

Team A plays against team B. Both teams underhand serve at the same time, after which they continue to play until one of the teams makes a mistake.

The drill is meant to be a warming-up drill, so jumping is prohibited and hard touches are mandatory.

3. Two against two

3.1. Variations on two against two

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Variations on two against two'

Teams of two players compete. Jumping is prohibited and hard touches are mandatory. The ball is brought into the game using an underhand serve.

The winning team takes the position of team A (or stays there). The losing team sprints towards the wall behind team A and joins the teams waiting behind team B afterwards.

Variations:

  1. Each team is allowed to touch the ball only once.
  2. Each team has to play the ball exactly twice.
  3. Each player is holding a ball, which is used to play the other ball (the game's ball).
  4. Each player is holding a ball. This ball has to be tossed in the air when the other ball (the game's ball) has to be played.
  5. Each team has an extra ball on the ground, which the team has to keep in motion.
  6. Each team has one ball. The ball that is played across the net by the opponent is caught, after which the game continues with the team's ball.
  7. One of the players is holding a chair. The chair has to be used to play the ball at least once. At most two touches per team are allowed.

3.2. "Thinking games" two against two

Diagram for the volleyball drill '"Thinking games" two against two'

Teams of two players play against each other. The ball is brought into the game using an underhand serve. Jumping is prohibited and hard touches are mandatory.

The winning team takes the place of team A (or stays there). The losing team sprints towards the wall behind team A and joins the players waiting behind team B.

A team loses when it loses the rally or when it cannot meet the assignment.

Variations:

  1. Each team has to use a certain number of arms before playing the ball towards the other team. Bumping = two arms. Spiking = one arm.
    1. The teams use four arms, three arms, two arms, and one arm.
    2. Each team has to use seven arms in total each time.
    3. The teams have to make sure that the combined number of arms used by both teams is seven.
  2. Both touches by team members have to take place on the same side of the court.
  3. One touch by a team member has to take place before the three-meter line, the other behind the three-meter line.
  4. Each team has a Golden Ball underneath the shirt of one of its members. If one of the opponents can be touched with this ball, the opponent loses.

3.3. Van Harskamp

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Van Harskamp'

Teams of two play against each other. Each team has to play the final ball of a rally ("the attack") from side A to side B. Consequently, each team has to cross the net and move from one side to the other repeatedly, while playing the ball within the team.

Jumping is prohibited and hard touches are mandatory. The ball is brought into play using an underhand serve. Each team can play the ball at most three times.

3.4. Split-up teams

Diagram for the volleyball drill 'Split-up teams'

Two teams of two players play against each other, where each team is split up such that its members are on opposite sides of the net. Team A takes the left side of the court, and team B takes the right side of the court. Each team can play the ball at most twice. Each ball that is played towards the opponent has to cross the net.

Jumping is prohibited and hard touches are mandatory. The first ball enters the game by means of an underhand serve.

Variation:

The team members are positioned diagonally on both sides of the net.