Understanding a Back Row Attack in Volleyball

Back row attack volleyball
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A back row attack in volleyball occurs when one of the three back row player attacks the ball and contacts it at the top of the net.

In a back row attack, the back row player jumps from behind the white line, also known as the ten foot line, or the three meter line and contacts the ball.

Penalty

In a back row attack, the back row attacker must jump from behind the three meter line. If the player attacks from in front of the three meter line, a penalty is called.

Other Common Volleyball Terms

Volleyball is a game of ample terminology. Here is a list of some other common volleyball terms:

Ace: A botched serve after which the opponent is awarded a point.

Antenna: Vertical rods mounted above the sidelines and close to the edges of the net, and usually used for indoor courts.

Approach: Moving quickly toward the net or ball in an attempt to make a play.

Assist: Helping a teammate set up a kill.

Attack Block: A receiver's attempt to block a spiked ball.

Attack Error: An attack botched in one of five ways: It lands out of bounds, the ball goes into the net, the opponent blocks the ball, the attacker commits a center violation, or the attacker illegally contacts the ball.

Attack Line: Also called "the 10-foot line"; the line that divides the front row players from the back row players.

Attack: The offensive act of hitting the volleyball.

Attacker: Also called "hitter" or "spiker." An offensive player who tries to hit the ball to end a play and ultimately earn a point for his team.

Back Court: The space from the end line to the attack line.

Back Set: A set delivered from behind the setter to an attacker.

Beach Dig: Also called "deep dish", a method of receiving the ball open-handed.

Block Assist: Two or more teammates help block a spiked ball.

Block: A defense play by teammates intended to keep a spiked ball in the offense court.

Bump/Bump Pass: To pass the ball using locked forearms.

Campfire/Campfire Defense: Two or more players surround a ball that lands on the floor.

Carry: A botched pass involving prolonged contact with the ball.

Centerline Violation: Crossing the centerline and entering the opponent's half.

Centerline: The floor line running the length of the net that divides the court in half.

Chester: A hit to the chest.

Closing the Block: Teammates close the space between two blockers to prevent the ball from passing between them.

Coach Kill: The opponent fouls immediately after the coach calls a time-out or substitution.

Cover the Hitter: Attacking players surround a spiker to protect opponent rebounds.

Cross Court Shot: An attack delivered at an angle across the court from one side of the net to the other.

Cut Shot: A spike delivered at a sharp angle across the net.

Decoy: An offensive play set up to disguise the receiving spiker.

Deep Dish: Also called "beach dig"; to receive the ball open-handed.

Deep Set: A set hit away from the net in an effort to throw off blockers.

Dig: Diving deep to pass a spiked or fast-moving ball close to the floor.

Dink: A one-handed move gently around blockers using the fingertips.

Double Block: Two players working in tandem to deflect a ball hit close to the net.

Double Hit: Two or more hits in a row by the same player.

Double Quick: Two hitters quickly approach the setter.

Doubles: Most commonly played on sand, a game involving two players per team.

Down Ball: A defense call on a ball hit overhand so far from the net that the defense chooses not to block it.

Dump: A soft hit near the net, as opposed to a spike, intended to throw off the offense.

Facial: Also called "six-pack"; a blocker gets hit in the head or face by the spiker.

Fish: A player who gets hung up in the net.

Five-one: A six-player team that involves five hitters and one setter.

Five-set: Also called "red set"; the back row sets a play to the right front player.

Flare: A strategic move from the inside out designed to fake the opponent.

A teammate runs a deceptive play, then the attacker quickly moves from the inside to attack on the outside.

Floater: A served ball with no spin.

Forearm Pass: Or simply "pass", a play made with the inside forearms locked at the wrists.

Foul: Rule violation.

Four Set: Also called "shoot set"; a set one foot from the sideline and one to two feet from above the net for the outside hitter.

Four Two: Six-player team using four hitters and two setters.

Free Ball: A ball returned on a pass and not on a spike.

Free Ball: A gentle return of the ball by the opponent.

Free Zone: Area outside the boundaries of the court.

Free Zone: Area outside the court boundaries.

Friendly Fire: A light blow to the head with a serve.

Front Slide: Sliding into position in front of the setter.

Front: The front net position to block the attacker.

Heat: A very hard spike.

Held Ball: A ball resting in a player's arms or hands resulting in a foul.

Hit: A jump strike of the ball with the palm of the hand.

Hitter: The "spiker" or "attacker".

Hitting Percentage: Total kills minus total attack errors divided by the number of attempts.

Husband-and-wife Play: Slang phrase referring to a ball that drops between two players who fail to communicate.

Inside Shoot: A strategic play in which the attacker feigns a quick hit for a medium-height hit.

Isolation Play: A play intended to pit the attacker on a specific defender.

Jedi Defense: Slang for a surprisingly powerful pass pulled off by an immobile defender.

Joust: Opposing players volley the ball above the plane of the net.

Jump Serve: A jump spike of the ball by the server.

Jungle Ball: An informal game involving people unapprised of the rules.

Key: Predicting the opponent's next move, based on play patterns.

Kill: A hit immediately resulting in a point or out.

Kong: A one-handed block so-named after the infamous King Kong's moves.

Let Serve: A net serve. Playable if it makes it over the net, dead if not.

Line Serve: A straight serve landing on the opponent's left sideline.

Line Shot: A spiked shot landing on the opponent's sideline.

Line: A straight sideline attack.

Lollipop: A gentle serve often resulting in getting "licked".

Middle Back: The back row middle player assigned to cover deep spikes.

Middle Blocker: The front row middle player assigned to block close-net spikes.

Middle Up: The back row middle player assigned to cover dinks and short shots.

Middle: The middle front or back player.

Mintonette: The original name for the game of volleyball, given by William G. Morgan.

Monument Valley: Space between two, tall, non-defending players.

Multiple Offense: The use of multiple sets.

Net Violation: A part of the uniform or body illegally contacts the net.

Off-speed Hit: A low-impact spike with a spin.

Offside Block: The net player opposite the attacker side.

Outside Hitter: A right or left-front attacker that approaches the ball from the outside.

Overhand Pass: An open-handed pass made from above the forehead.

Overhand Serve: Serving the ball with the palm of the hand above the shoulder.

Overlap: The rotation positions of players before the serve.

Paint Brush: A player attempts to strike the ball but instead brushes it.

Pancake: A bounce off the back of the hand by a player who dives to the floor to save the ball.

Pass: Also called "forearm pass"; a play using the underside of the forearms connected at the wrists.

Penetration: A block in which the player reaches across and breaks the plane of the net.

Pepper: A drill in which two players pass, set, and volley the ball.

Point of Service: An "ace", or point-winning serve.

Power Alley: A powerful hit that travels across the court.

Power Tip: A powerful push or control of the ball by the attackers.

Power Volleyball: A competitive method originating with the Japanese.

Prince: Also called "whale" or "Princess of Whales"; a flippant player who always hits the ball with as much power as possible with little regard for strategy.

Quick Set: An above-the-net strategy in which the hitter anticipates the setter's play and is in the air before the set is executed.

Rainbow: An arc-shaped shot.

Ready Position: A player's neutral, alert stance prior to moving on the ball.

Reception Error: A botched receive that could have otherwise been returned.

Red Card: The final penalty given by an official after two yellow card warnings, which could result in a player's or team's disqualification from the game.

Redwood: A tall, somewhat uncoordinated blocker.

Roll: Quick return of a close-to-the-floor ball whereby the digger or passer rolls the ball over his arms, back or shoulders.

Roof: A spike block that deflects the ball directly to the floor.

Rotation: The clockwise movement of players around the court after a side out.

Screening: Illegal obstruction of an opposing server's field of vision.

Serve: To set the ball in play.

Server: The player who sets the ball in play.

Service Ace: A serve that bounces off the floor or is struck by the passer so that a second hit is not possible.

Service Error: A serve in which the ball hits or fails to clear the net, the ball goes out of bounds, or the server faults.

Service Winner: The serving team earns a point directly after having served the ball.

Set: Strategic passes among players intent to direct the ball to a spike.

Setter: The second of three players in a series passes, who sets the ball up with an overhand pass to a hitter.

Shank: An extremely botched pass.

Side Out: The receiving team is given the serve because the serving team commits an error.

Six-pack: A spiked ball hits the blocker in the face or head.

Six-two: An offense using six players and two setters opposite each other on rotation.

Sizzle the Pits: A spike that whizzes past players' raised arms.

Sky Ball: An underhand serve that sends the ball high over the net and straight down.

Spike: A strike with intent to kill the ball on the opponent's side.

Strong Side: A right-handed hit from the left front row, and vice versa.

Stuff: Slang for "block", a hit deflected by blockers back to the attacker's court.

Tandem: A play intended to surprise blockers wherein a player directly behind another attacks the ball.

Tip: Control of the ball with the fingers, also called "dink" or "dump".

Tool: A "wipe" or hit that bounces off blockers' arms and out of bounds.

Trap Set: A low, tight set close to the net.

Tuna: A net violation.

Turning In: The outside blocker turns his body in toward the court in order to deflect the ball inbounds.

Underhand Serve: A serving style in which the ball is lightly tossed into the air and struck with closed fist turned up.

Weak Side: A right-handed player plays from the right front side of the court, and vice versa.

Whale: Also called "princess" or "prince; swinging carelessly at the ball without any regard to strategy.

Wipe: Also called "tool", a deliberate hit of the ball off a blocker's arms and out of bounds.

Yellow Card: A warning of misconduct given by an official to a player. Two yellow cards is an automatic red card, in which a player or team is disqualified from the game.