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These Hitting Techniques Will Make You The “Go-To” Person When That Kill Is Needed

Great hitting techniques are one of the most sought after set of skills from a volleyball player. Usually, most people do not have a mastery of them as they should.


For the purposes of teaching proper hitting technique, I am going to explain it from the viewpoint of a right handed hitter that is hitting a standard set on the outside.

Hitting is one of those skills that is very technique oriented in order to be effective. Here are the key components of a good hitting technique:

Footwork: The footwork you use as a hitter is one of the most important aspects of hitting. It is all about being at the right place at the right time.

As an outside hitter, your normal approach will be a four step approach to the net. You will make the first step to the outside with the right foot as the setter is getting the ball. So, as the setter sets the ball, you will step with your right foot to the outside, then left, right, and left as you are jumping.

The reason that the first step goes to the outside is so that you keep to the outside of the court. By staying outside, it will make it more difficult for the blocker to come out, you will save room for the middle to have an area to work with, and you will have more angles to hit with.

Staying outside is also important so that you can adjust to the set. It is easier to be outside and adjust to a set that is under set, rather than being inside and adjust to a ball that is set to the outside.

Your third step in your four step approach is your plant step. This is when you will be planting to get a good jump.

The fourth step in the approach is for balance and getting a good take off. The fourth step should keep you off of the net so that you can jump forward and land without hitting the net.

Arms: Prior to jumping, your arms will be used to create momentum and to elevate on your jump. As you are planting on your third step, you are going to swing your arms backwards. When you are taking your fourth and final step, you will swing your arms forward and up. This will use your momentum to throw yourself in the air and to get your arms in position to hit the ball.

While in the air, you will be using the same bow and arrow technique used to serve. If you didn’t read the section on serving techniques then you should go read about it since it is the same technique. It should look like this in the air:

Hitting Techniques with Bow and Arrow

Arms: The important thing with your arms is to line up your arms and shoulders to the target. As you are jumping, it is important to keep the ball in front of you. By keeping the ball in front of you, it will be easier for you to see where the blockers hands are going to be. Then you can decide whether to hit past the blocker, or to tool the blocker (purposefully hit it off of their hands).

As you can see from this picture, the hitter can see where the blocker is (or in this case, isn’t) in order to hit past the blocker. This is why it is important to keep the ball in front of you. Vision is very important as a hitter and to improve your hitting techniques.

Hitting Techniques Hitting Past Blocker

When hitting, you want to reach as high as possible when hitting the ball. This hitting technique will make it so that it will be more difficult for people to block you and you can even hit over the block in some cases.

Wrists: Upon impact of the ball, it is important to snap your wrist. This is where some of the power will come, but the real reason to snap your wrist is to put topspin on the ball so that when you are spiking the ball, it will move down instead of floating long out of bounds.

These are the basics of hitting techniques. Even though these are just techniques, the important part is to practice and to adjust to your setter.

A good hitter must adjust to the setter. Just like a quarterback and wide receivers must be on the same page in football, volleyball is much the same way with the setter and their hitters. Many of the plays in volleyball are based on timing of the setter and hitters. It is important to be able to adjust.

As you are practicing with your setter, let them know where you like it. If the set was good, let them know so that they can continue to do it that way.

During practice, learn to make adjustments. Usually, an outside hitter will take their first step as the setter is getting the ball in their hands. By doing it that way, where you too early or late? Make the necessary adjustments for the next set. It is all about repetition, making adjustments, and getting familiar with each other as a hitter.

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Where to go next?

Sports Volleyball Training – This interview will show you how to train for volleyball.

Volleyball Transition – We detail how to efficiently move from defense to offense.

Famous Volleyball Players – Who are your favorite players? Add them if they aren’t already on the list!

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1 comment

“Even though these are just techniques, the important part is to practice and to adjust to your setter.”

I love how you emphasize that the hitter should adjust to the setter. With great setters this is easy, and currently am trying to connect with setters whose timing/sets I don’t understand.

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