Volleyball Serve Receive Drills: Types Of Serves, Advanced Drills

“Volleyball serve receive drills” refer to specific exercises and practices designed to enhance players’ skills in receiving serves effectively during a volleyball game.

These drills focus on improving techniques such as passing, control, and accuracy when receiving serves from the opposing team. By learning serve receive skills, players can contribute to a smoother and more successful gameplay.

Volleyball Serve Receive Drills

Importance of Serve Receive Drills

A solid serve receive forms the foundation of any successful play in volleyball. Understanding the importance of this skill is crucial before delving into specific drills.

Enhanced Ball Control

The serve receive is the first touch in a sequence, and precision in this phase directly impacts ball control. Well-executed serve receive drills improve accuracy, allowing your team to set up plays more efficiently.

Consistent Setups

A proficient serve receiver ensures a consistent ball trajectory, setting the stage for effective plays. Consistency in serve receive drills translates to predictability in the game, enabling seamless transitions from defense to offense.

Importance of Serve Receive Drills

Tips for Effective Serve Receive Drilling

Before exploring specific drills, consider these tips to maximize the effectiveness of your serve-receive training sessions.

Focus on Body Position

Maintain a balanced and athletic stance during serve-receive drills. Your feet should be shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent, and weight forward. This position provides stability and facilitates quick movements in response to different serves.

Develop Soft Hands

Soft hands are crucial for absorbing the impact of the serve. Aim for a gentle touch instead of rigidly blocking the ball, allowing your teammates to make accurate setups. Soft hands also contribute to improved ball control.

Tips for Effective Serve Receive Drilling

Volleyball Serve Receive Drills for Beginners

For those new to volleyball, foundational drills lay the groundwork for future success. Start with these beginner-friendly exercises.

Passing against the Wall

Objective: Develop basic passing skills and hand-eye coordination.

Sr NoSteps
1Stand about 5 feet away from a wall.
2Have a partner serve the ball against the wall at a manageable pace.
3Focus on proper hand positioning and gentle passes to ensure the ball returns to your partner accurately.
Tip: Start with underhand serves before progressing to overhand serves.

Target Practice Drill

Objective: Enhance accuracy and spatial awareness.

Sr NoSteps
1Set up target zones on the court using markers.
2Have a serving partner target these zones while you focus on accurately receiving services within the designated areas.
3Emphasize maintaining a balanced stance throughout.
Tip: Begin with larger target zones and gradually reduce their size as skills improve
Volleyball Serve Receive Drills for Beginners

Volleyball Serve Receive Drills for Middle School

As players progress to the middle school level, introducing more nuanced drills helps refine their serve-receive skills.

Footwork and Passing Combo

Objective: Improve footwork and passing coordination.

Sr NoSteps
1Incorporate lateral movement drills along with passing exercises.
2Have a serving partner vary the serve direction, requiring quick adjustments in footwork and precise passing.
3Emphasize smooth transitions between movements.
Tip: Increase the complexity by introducing unexpected serve variations.

Passing under Pressure

Objective: Simulate game-like pressure situations.

Sr NoSteps
1Create scenarios where multiple servers take turns targeting specific areas on the court.
2Focus on maintaining composure and accurate passing under varying degrees of pressure.
3Encourage effective communication among teammates.
Tip: Introduce serve types commonly encountered in competitive play (e.g., topspin serve, float serves, jump serves).
Volleyball Serve Receive Drills for beginners

Advanced Serve Receive Drills

As players advance in their skills, incorporating more challenging drills can further enhance their serve-receive capabilities.

Blocking Integration Drill

Objective: Enhance serve receive in coordination with the blocking team members.

Sr NoSteps
1Integrate middle blocker into the drill, simulating a real-game scenario.
2Coordinate movements with the blockers to receive serves and set up plays effectively.
3Emphasize teamwork, communication, and seamless transitions.
Tip: Rotate positions to ensure all players experience both serving and receiving roles.

Dynamic Serve Receive Simulation

Objective: Simulate a dynamic and unpredictable game environment.

Sr NoSteps
1Set up a scenario with multiple servers, hitters, and blockers.
2Incorporate various serve types, speeds, and intensities to create realistic match conditions.
3Emphasize quick decision-making, adaptability, and effective communication.
Tip: Rotate players through different positions to ensure well-rounded skill development.

Cross-Court Passing Drill

Objective: Enhance lateral mobility and adaptability in serve receive.

Sr NoSteps
1Stand in the middle of the court.
2Have a partner serve from one corner, and you must accurately receive the serve and pass the ball to the opposite corner.
3Focus on quick lateral movements and maintaining proper body position.
Tip: Increase the serving speed to intensify the drill.

Blindfolded Drill

Objective: Heighten focus and sensory awareness during serve receive.

Sr NoSteps
1Securely blindfold the receiver.
2Have a partner serve the ball, and the receiver must rely on other senses to accurately position themselves and make the pass.
Tip: Start with slower serves before progressing to faster ones.
Advanced Serve Receive Drills

Types Of Serves

Serve TypesDescription
Underhand ServeA basic serve where the ball is struck with an open hand below shoulder level.
Overhand Serve (Topspin Serve)A serve involving a tossed ball and a closed-fist strike, creating a topspin for a downward trajectory.
Float ServeA serve with minimal spin causes an erratic ball movement, making it challenging for opponents.
Jump ServeA dynamic serve where the player tosses the ball, jumps, and delivers a powerful strike.
Jump Float ServeA combination of a float serve and a jump serve involving controlled contact with minimal spin.
Skyball ServeA unique, high-arching serve with an open-hand hit, creating a steep and unpredictable flight path.
Short Serve (Short or Dump Serve)Intentionally serving the ball with less power to land it closer to the net, catching opponents off guard.
Spin Jump ServeA powerful jump serve with deliberate spin, combining speed and a curving trajectory.
Types Of Serves


What is serve and receive in volleyball?

In volleyball, the serve is when the player who starts the game sends the ball over the net. The receive is when the other team tries to handle and control the serve, which sets up the next play. It’s an important part of the game that affects how well the whole team does.

How do I get better at serve receive?

To improve your serve receive, focus on footwork and positioning, practice regularly with various serve types, and enhance communication with teammates for better coordination on the court.

What is volleyball serving skill?

Volleyball serving skill involves launching the ball over the net to initiate play. It requires precision, control, and varied techniques for strategic gameplay.

Which skill is used to receive the serve?

The skill used to receive the serve in volleyball is called “passing” or “serve receive.” Players employ techniques such as forearm passing to control and direct the ball to set up for the next play.

How can I practice my serve?

To practice your serve in volleyball, focus on consistent tosses, proper stance, and a controlled arm swing. Use repetitive drills to improve accuracy and power.


Incorporating these volleyball serve-receive drills into your training routine will undoubtedly elevate your skills on the court. Consistency, focus on fundamentals, and gradual progression from basic to advanced drills are key to mastering this crucial aspect of the game.

By dedicating time to purposeful training, you’ll become a more reliable and effective serve receiver, contributing significantly to your team’s success. Remember, the journey to mastery is incremental, so enjoy the process and stay committed to continuous improvement.

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