February 2020 Coaching Tip

Posted by Volley CART on

Tip by Shel DeLisle, Milwaukee, WI.


Early in the season, we often have trouble connecting with our middles. This drill helps us work on timing and communication between the setter(s) & middles.

Middle Hitter Catch, Tip, Attack

This drill can be done in one direction on the court or both. I have enough players to run it in both directions.

Side A:

• Setter (can have in RF or come from behind RB as a progression)

• 3 players in Serve Receive positions

• Middle Hitter at net

• Server(s) on end line with balls & ball court


Side B:

• Setter (can have in RF or come from behind RB as a progression)

• 3 players in Serve Receive positions

• Middle Hitter at net

• Server(s) on end line with balls & ball court


Catch to Start:

For this progression, servers may serve simultaneously. Middle hitter releases from the net, transitions & calls for a set. Coach can designate type of set, setter can call it prior to serve, or middle hitter can call it out with transition. Setter connects with middle on agreed upon set. Middle approaches & catches ball. This can be run for a designated amount of time or a designated number of sets. Server(s) can alternate with passers or switch with each progression.


Tip Progression:

This progression can also be run simultaneously as it is desirable for the middle to tip to an open space and avoid defenders. This progression is run the same as the first, but this time the middle hitter tips to open space. Again, coach should designate an amount of time or number of sets to complete the progression.


Attack Progression:

For this progression, servers must alternate sides as the middles will now connect with the ball.


Multiple middle hitters can be on each side for each progression. We tend to run a variety of sets both quicks (forward & back 1, 2, & 31) as well as slides & Cs, but coaches can decide to limit the type of sets or to let the hitter/setter combination manage that portion of the drill.


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