Solo Drills To Improve Your Volleyball Skills

By John Kessel | March 04, 2020, 3:20 p.m. (ET)

Solo Drills

Team practices are canceled right now, but you can still find a way to work on skills by yourself! Find a windowless wall (like your garage door), chalk a line the height of a net on it, and get practicing.

Serve

Stand 20-30 feet away from the wall and serve above the line. Sprint in, grab the ball and immediately set up the next serve attempt.

Forearm/Overhead Pass/Dig

As the ball bounces off the wall, play it up to yourself, pass it to the wall and repeat. The goal is to learn to first play the ball up, not back where it came. Change it up and pass at an angle by placing a box off to one side of the wall’s base and passing into the box. 

Set

Throw the ball against the wall, move to the rebound and set front or back sets. Position yourself perpendicular to the wall and face left or right depending on which direction you’re setting. The set should go along the net line, not above it. After the set, move to the hitter’s position and catch your own set. Return to your starting position and repeat.

Spike

Stand 10-15 feet from the wall, set yourself and hit the ball above the line on the wall. Remember to turn right and left to practice line and cut shots; the ball should still bounce back to you. You can train tip and roll shots, too – just be sure you strive to keep a neutral, unreadable look before you decide which shot to execute. This will pay off against human opponents! You can also bounce a hard ball off the ground, jump and hit it.

Learn from the Pros

You learn how volleyball is played when you see great players compete. Watch YouTube highlights of great matches or check out tips. Examples:

U.S. Men's National Team vs. Brazil, 2017 USAV Cup

U.S. Women's National Team vs. Brazil, 2017 USAV Cup

Visit the USAV Watch page and click on TIPS

USA Volleyball YouTube (match highlights, tips, interviews)