Girls Volleyball Players Learn How To Make Setting Simple Part 2

Published: 15th January 2007
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In this article I'll be breaking up the volleyball setting skill, by each body part. By learning what movements go with what particular body parts, I'll teach you how to be a better volleyball setter. On your own, or with the help of a parent or partner you'll be able to check to see whether you are performing this volleyball skill correctly. This way, when practicing on your own without a coach, you can correct or reduce your own unforced errors! This is Part 2 of my Setting is Simple Series.

Upper Body and Lower Body Positioning

In order to set the ball correctly, how do you know if you have the right body position? Ideally you want your whole body to be lined up in a straight line underneath the ball every time you get ready to set it. You should not be leaning to the ball but squatting underneath it just like you do when you sit in a chair. Your body is erect and perpendicular while your legs are doing the work. Your forehead and your feet will be your guide as to positioning your whole body underneath the ball.

Moving To The Ball Quickly

When the ball has reached its highest height it can only come down.
Once you determine a) where the ball will come down and b) the speed of how fast the ball will come down- then you know that's where you, your forehead and your quick moving feet need to be, directly underneath its path. Then, it's a matter of moving your legs quickly enough to get your forehead, followed by your body underneath the ball in order to get in the correct squatted setting position.

One more thing to remember before contacting the ball. Once you've determined where you need to be in order to set - you need to square your shoulders and face the target you are going to set to - before you contact the ball. This setting tip is especially important for beginners and high school players. First develop into a setter who has greatly improved their technique then you can work on disguising your set.

So, if I'm in the front row setting and the ball I want to set is coming from my back court and I know that I need to set my outside hitter who is in the front row with me I first

1. identify where the ball is going to come down
2. then quickly move my feet to get underneath the ball and beat the ball to that location
3. then I face exactly where I want to set so that all my force and energy is in a straight line and concentrated on getting the ball to my target BEFORE

4. I set the volleyball. You shouldn't be twisting or setting sideways while contacting the ball. Be sure you are facing your target before contacting the ball!)

Contacting The Volleyball

Once the ball is within reach of your hands, you will lower your body into the squatted position by bending your knees down to almost a 45 degree angle. Remember how you sit in a chair? This means you feel like you are about to sit down in a chair. Don't forget that your right foot should be about a couple of inches in front of your left foot if you're right handed and vice versa if you are left handed.

Once the ball is in your "triangle" -the triangle is the shape you form with your hands in order to make contact with the ball--you come out of your squat by straightening your legs, meeting the ball and directing the ball straight back up into the air in the direction you are facing.

Since you have already squared up and faced your intended target your arms and shoulders should follow through straight up (not out, but up!) staying in line with your body.

When you've finished setting the ball, do a self-check and STOP and hold your position to make sure that your arms are fully extended above your forehead and your hands are only 1-2 inches apart from each other still in the shape of a loose triangle. Your palms are still facing upwards toward the sky with no breaking or flexing of your wrists! Your fingers should still finish in the shape of a "broken" triangle. This is your finishing position for every volleyball set you make.

Check your finishing position if your sets aren't getting where you want them to go.

Tips on How To Check Your Own Volleyball Setting Technique

If your arms are fully extended but finish in front of your nose your sets will be too low for your hitter to hit.

If you finish setting the ball and your arms finish on top of your head or behind your forehead your sets will not get to your outside hitter and will likely finish right where you are standing which makes it difficult for anyone else to hit or pass the ball.

Where is your body facing? If you aren't facing your target, then the ball will not get to the target.

Where are your arms once you've finished setting the ball?

Is your butt sticking out? When you set the ball using your legs this produces the force you need to get the ball long distances. If you set the ball with your butt sticking out this usually means you are setting with just the power of your arms which means you won't set the ball as far as you could if you were using the power of your legs.

This is why its important to use your forehead as your guide for correct body position. Once your forehead is underneath the ball, then you use that as a guide for where your whole body needs to be lined up as well.

By following these tips, you will be able to tell by yourself whether you are setting the ball correctly.

April Chapple, created Volleyball where parents and players find more tips on how to set and videos of professional players teaching you how to become a better volleyball setter .

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