Opposite Hitter in Volleyball: Skills, Drills, Tips, Strategies

Opposite hitter, also known as right-side hitter, is a crucial player position in volleyball. This position is typically on the court’s right side, opposite the setter. The opposite hitter plays a significant role in the game’s offensive and defensive aspects.

Volleyball, a dynamic sport demanding skill, strategy, and teamwork, features crucial player positions. One such position, the opposite hitter, is indispensable for offensive prowess.

This comprehensive guide delves into the opposite hitter’s role, emphasizing responsibilities, essential skills, strategies, and overall importance in a team setting.

Positioned on the right side, facing the setter, the opposite hitter executes powerful attacks, playing a pivotal role in offensive strategy.

The right-side hitter, or opposite hitter, is crucial in volleyball, positioned on the court’s right side, opposite the setter. This player significantly influences both offensive and defensive aspects of the game.

Opposite Hitter in Volleyball

Skills for an Effective Opposite Hitter

Robust Spiking

The ability to deliver potent spikes is the hallmark of a successful opposite hitter. Overpowering the opponent’s defense requires strength, timing, and precision.

Precise Blocking

Effective blocking is crucial for disrupting the opponent’s attacks. A skilled opposite hitter must be able to read the game and execute well-timed blocks.

Strategic Serving

Beyond attacking, opposite hitters contribute significantly to the team’s serving strategy. Serving strategically can pressure the opposing team and set the tone for the game.


Volleyball is fast-paced, and an opposite hitter must adapt quickly to changing situations. Flexibility in playing style and a willingness to adjust tactics on the fly are essential.

Role of Communication in Opposite Hitting

Communication is the backbone of any successful sports team, and volleyball is no exception. Opposite hitters, in particular, must maintain clear lines of communication with their teammates.

Effective communication with the setter ensures well-coordinated plays, enhancing the team’s overall performance. A lack of communication can lead to confusion on the court, impacting the game’s fluidity.

Mental Aspect of Opposite Hitting

While physical skills are crucial, the mental aspect of playing the opposite hitter position should be considered. Opposing hitters must possess mental resilience, quick decision-making abilities, and a strategic mindset.

Understanding the psychology of the game allows them to anticipate the opponent’s moves, making split-second decisions that can influence the outcome of a match.

Drills to Enhance Opposite Hitting Skills

Spiking Accuracy Drill

Sr NoSteps
1Set up targets on different areas of the court.
2Practice spiking with varying degrees of power, aiming for the designated targets.
3This drill enhances accuracy and control in your spiking technique.

Block and Recover Drill

Sr No
1Simulate game scenarios with quick transitions between blocking and defensive positions.
2Focus on recovering swiftly after a block to be prepared for subsequent plays.
3This drill improves agility and responsiveness.

Serve Placement Drill

Sr NoSteps
1Set targets in specific zones of the opponent’s court.
2Practice serving with different techniques to target these zones consistently.
3Enhances strategic serving skills crucial for disrupting the opponent’s game plan.
Drills to Enhance Opposite Hitting Skills

Strategies for Success as an Opposite Hitter

Strategic Positioning

  • Being in the right place at the right time is crucial for an opposite hitter. Strategic positioning allows for optimal spiking opportunities and effective blocking.


  • Clear communication with teammates, especially the setter, is vital. Coordination ensures seamless plays and enhances the team’s overall efficiency.

Exploiting Weaknesses

  • Opposite hitters should analyze and use the opposing team’s weaknesses. Identifying and capitalizing on gaps in the defense can turn the game’s tide.

Mix Up Your Attacks

  • Avoid predictability by incorporating a mix of powerful spikes, finesse tips, and roll shots.
  • Keep opponents guessing, making it challenging to form an effective defense strategy.

Collaborate with Teammates

  • Coordinate with your setter to establish a strong connection.
  • Work with other hitters to create diversified offensive plays that exploit the opponent’s weaknesses.

Adapt to Setter Styles

  • Different setters have unique styles and preferences.
  • Adapt your playing style to synchronize seamlessly with the setter on your team, maximizing offensive efficiency.
Right side Hitter in Volleyball

Height Of Opposite Hitter In Volleyball

The height of an opposite hitter in volleyball can vary, depending on individual players and their specific characteristics. Generally, opposite hitters come in various heights, like players in other positions.

At professional and collegiate levels, opposite hitters often have heights ranging from around 6 feet (183 cm) to 6 feet 6 inches (198 cm) or more.

However, this position has no strict height requirement, and players of various heights can be successful as opposite hitters based on their skills, athleticism, and playing style.

Analyzing Opponent Strategies

One of the lesser-discussed but equally vital aspects of being an opposite hitter is the ability to analyze and counter the opponent’s strategies. This involves keen observation during matches, identifying patterns in the opposing team’s defense, and adjusting one’s approach accordingly.

Successful opposite hitters are strategic thinkers, capable of adapting their game plan based on the nuances of each match.

Importance of Opposite Hitter in Volleyball

Opposite hitters bring a unique dynamic to a volleyball team’s strategy. Additionally, their ability to score points through powerful attacks adds unpredictability to the game, keeping the opposing team on edge.

Furthermore, a skilled opposite hitter can be a game-changer, influencing the outcome with well-executed plays.

Tips for Aspiring Opposite Hitters

For those aspiring to master the opposite hitter position, focused training is paramount. Here are practical tips to enhance your skills:

Strength TrainingBuilding strength in the core, legs, and upper body is essential for robust spiking and effective blocking.
Technical DrillsUse drills targeting spiking, blocking, and serving techniques. Technical proficiency is the foundation of success.
Game SimulationsRegularly participate in game simulations to develop the ability to make quick decisions under pressure. Additionally, simulations mimic real-game scenarios and enhance on-court adaptability.
Focus on VersatilityDevelop a versatile skill set beyond robust spiking. Work on precise blocking, strategic serving, and defensive capabilities to become a well-rounded player.
Continuous CommunicationMaintain open and effective communication with your setter and teammates. Consequently, clear communication ensures coordinated plays and minimizes errors during crucial moments.
Mental ToughnessCultivate mental resilience to navigate the highs and lows of a match. Stay focused, positive, and adaptable, especially when faced with challenging situations.

Study Opponents
Invest time in studying the playing styles of opponents. Identify weaknesses in their defense and exploit them strategically during matches.
Tips for Aspiring Opposite Hitters

A Glimpse into Opposite Hitters’ Training Routines

To provide a more tangible understanding of the training routines, let’s explore a sample regimen:

  1. Strength and Conditioning: Begin with a comprehensive strength and conditioning routine focusing on the core, legs, and upper body. This lays the foundation for powerful spikes and effective blocks.
  2. Technical Drills: Devote specific training sessions to hone technical skills such as spiking, blocking, and serving. Repetition of these fundamental actions refines muscle memory and enhances execution during games.
  3. Game Simulations: Regularly engage in game simulations to replicate real-match scenarios. Additionally, simulations sharpen skills and cultivate the ability to make sound decisions under pressure, a vital aspect of opposite hitting.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Even the most skilled opposite hitters can fall into common pitfalls. To ensure continuous improvement, be mindful of these mistakes:

  1. Overemphasizing Power: While power is crucial, a balanced approach is essential. Overemphasizing power alone can lead to predictable plays that the opposing team can counter effectively.
  2. Neglecting Defensive Skills: Opposite hitters are not solely offensive players. Developing solid defensive skills ensures well-rounded performance on the court.
  3. Failure to Adapt: Every game is unique, and strategies that worked previously may only be effective in some situations. Flexibility and adaptability are critical to sustained success.

Optimal Positioning for Opposite Hitters

  1. Net Positioning:
    • Stand near the net to be ready for quick attacks.
    • Maintain a balanced stance, allowing for rapid movements in any direction.
  2. Read the Setter:
    • Pay close attention to the opposing setter’s activities.
    • Anticipate the setter’s decisions to position yourself strategically for effective attacks.
  3. Defensive Posture:
    • Transition quickly to a defensive posture after each attack.
    • Be ready to participate in blocks and contribute to the team’s defensive efforts.

Famous Opposite Hitters in Volleyball

Drawing inspiration from accomplished players can provide valuable insights. Some renowned opposite hitters in volleyball include:

  • Gabriela Guimaraes
  • Tsvetan Sokolov
  • Paola Egonu

Observing their techniques and learning from their experiences can contribute to your growth as an opposite hitter.

Evolution of the Opposite Hitter Position

Over the years, the role of the opposite hitter has evolved, adapting to changes in the sport’s dynamics. Initially seen as a specialized attacking position, modern volleyball demands versatility from opposing hitters.

Today, they are expected to excel in offense and contribute significantly to the team’s overall defensive strategy.

Physical Demands of Opposite Hitting

Being an opposite hitter places specific physical demands on players. Additionally, the constant jumping, explosive movements, and quick directional changes require a high level of fitness and conditioning.

Strength training, agility drills, and cardiovascular exercises are integral components of an opposite hitter’s training regimen to ensure peak physical performance during matches.

Physical Demands of Opposite Hitting


Can opposite hitters spike?

Yes, opposite hitters in volleyball are key spikers. They specialize in executing powerful and well-timed spikes as a primary component of their offensive role on the right side of the court.

What is the difference between opposite hitter and wing spiker?

The opposite hitter primarily focuses on powerful attacks from the right side, often participating in blocks, while the wing spiker, typically an outside hitter, attacks from the left side and plays a more prominent role in overall court coverage and defensive responsibilities.

What is a DS in volleyball?

A DS in volleyball, short for “Defensive Specialist,” is a player skilled in defensive techniques, specializing in receiving serves and making accurate passes to set up offensive plays. DS players often excel in back-row defense and are crucial for maintaining ball control during rallies.

What is a strong side hitter in volleyball?

A strong-side hitter in volleyball refers to the player who primarily attacks from the left front position. Also known as the outside hitter, they play a key role in offensive strategies, delivering powerful spikes and contributing to the team’s scoring efforts.


The opposite hitter in volleyball is a multifaceted player, crucial for team success. Moreover, their contributions extend beyond powerful attacks, requiring a holistic approach involving physical prowess, mental acuity, effective communication, and adaptability.

Excelling as an opposite hitter demands technical proficiency, strategic thinking, and effective communication. Additionally, implementing provided tips, engaging in purposeful drills, and optimizing on-court positioning pave the way to mastering the art of opposite hitting.

Embracing the learning process and staying dedicated to improvement lead to an elevated impact on the volleyball court. Furthermore, the opposite hitter position is not merely a role. It’s a dynamic and integral aspect of the game.

To elaborate, mastering essential skills, employing effective strategies, and understanding the position’s importance within a team context elevate performance.

As opposite hitters embark on their journey, continuous learning and adaptability prove essential for success in this challenging yet rewarding position.

The path to becoming a proficient opposite hitter involves not only mastering techniques but also understanding the broader context of one’s role within the team.

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