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Sports Themed Volleyball Drills

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Volleyball drills can be complicated or simple depending on the design. This article will go over a few fun drills that incorporate the aspects of other major sports. From Football to Baseball to Hockey, there are some really fun ways to touch on elements of other sports.



Baseball is a volleyball drill designed to work on sideout play and free ball play. In the drill, it starts with a six on six quality. One team will be the first to receive serve from the opponents. We have off players be the servers when we have more than twelve players.

The receiving team will look to sideout and if they do, they then receive a free ball from a coach. If they win the free ball point, they score one point and get to receive another free ball. If they win that, they score another point and get another free ball. The free balls are the equivalent to runs in baseball. But anytime the receive team loses a point, whether it be on the first sideout play, or while receiving a free ball, that equals one out.

The receive team will receive serve until they get three outs. Neither team rotates yet. The team that was receiving becomes the serving team and the team that was serving gets their chance to receive (bat). They try to sideout and get free balls to score runs. After their three outs, both teams rotate and off players can switch in for the next rotation (inning). We typically play a six inning game to work on all the rotations.



Football is a serve receive game that allows the setters to play with their play sets a little bit. In Football, teams are set up in a six versus six. The off players can be servers if you want to keep everyone involved.

The receive team needs three first downs (sideouts) to score a touchdown (6 pts). They have four downs (serves) to get a first down (sideout). So setters can be fairly risky on the first few sideout tries. Once a touchdown is scored, the receive team has one shot to score the extra point (1 pt) by siding out one last serve.

It will their team to kick off (serve at) to the opposing team. The opposing team will attempt to sideout three times to score. If at any time, a team cannot sideout after four downs (serves), there is a change of possession and the other team gets to receive and try and get their three first downs to score the touchdown.

Teams can play in one set rotation until a touchdown or loss of possession occurs, or rotate each time there is a sideout. Games can be played in five minute quarters.


Volley Hockey

VolleyHockey is also known as Survivor. In VolleyHockey, play is started in a six versus six setup with players in switched positions. The first rally is played and one team will win the rally. The player that caused the rally to end or is closest to where the ball landed will exit the court (go over the boards) so that the next point is five on six (a power play).

From this point forward, the team that loses a point loses the player closest or who caused the error, but the team that wins the point gets to bring a player back onto the court (over the boards).

We play that the team that lost the rally gets the next ball in and play goes on until one team has all its players eliminated. A best of three scenario is often sufficient for this drill.


Volley Field Hockey

Volley Field Hockey is a warmup game used in the early parts of practice to get people moving. In this game, the object is to score goals. Set up cones along the back wall about ten feet apart as the goals on each end of the court. Divide your groups into two even teams.

Players may use their hands to bat/roll the ball along the court and shoot (no kicking allowed from field players). Players will need to shoot by batting the ball, not throwing it. Each team is allowed one goalie.

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One addition we usually make is to add a second ball so there is action on both ends at the same time. If there is a score, the goalie score on starts the ball into play. They are allowed to posses the ball and roll it out much like a soccer goalie would. A timed game of ten minutes often works best.

Our Team Playing Volley Field Hockey


Volley Golf

One team of six is in receive. Another group of six on other side ready to defend, off players are servers. The receive group will get 10-15 balls (or 18 if you want to play true golf) with the object to get the lowest score. Par is 4. You score by counting the amount of rallies it takes to sideout. A rally is defined as an opportunity for the receiving team to attack.

1st rally - Hole in One, 1 pt
2nd rally - Eagle, 2 pts
3rd rally - Birdie, 3 pts
Any sideout 4 and over is Par, 4 pts
If the opponent holds - Bogey, 5 pts

Can have the receive team work one rotation for their 10-15, or have to rotate each time they get a sideout.

Example - the receiving team receives serve and attacks into the opponent's court. The opponents counter and send the ball into the receive team's side. They also get dug and the receiving team puts down the ensuing counterattack. 2 points for the eagle as it took them two attack attempts to score.

Example 2 - the receiving team receives serve and attacks into the opponent's court. They again get dug but this time the receiving team blocks the counterattack to the floor. 1 point for the hole-in-one for only needing one attack to score.


Dr. Dodgeball

Dr. Dodgeball is a warmup game that is pretty competitive, but also a little dangerous and should be done with something softer than volleyballs.

In Dr. Dodgeball, divide the squad into two even teams. Each team huddles up and selects the player that will be their doctor. The game begins with players on the end line of each side of the court, all the balls are on the center line. The coach counts down and yells go and the players run out and try and get the balls to throw at the opposing team.

If a player is hit, they have to sit down where they get hit. If someone catches a throw from a player, that throwing player is out and sits down where they are when the catch is made. We advise keeping their bumpers up (hands up) in case of errant throws. Players can re-enter the game (stand up and rejoin) if their doctor can move to them and touch them.

A team wins the game when they either hit the doctor or catch a throw that the doctor makes. So teams must protect their doctor and often have fake doctors that run around touching players who have been eliminated.

We allow players to go under the net and advance all the way to the ten foot line of the opponent's court to see who the brave players are. If we have a big gym, we insist that players remain within a foot of the endline unless they are getting a ball to throw.

Head shots are ten push ups and the player throwing the ball is the one who is out. The player hit in the head is still in the game. We usually play a best of three or five depending how long the first game takes.


Larry Rankin from Oklahoma on August 29, 2015:

A lot of fun volleyball themed activities.

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