Volleyball Drills: Transition Warm-Up

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Volleyball Drills: Transition Warm-Up

After a jog and a stretch and before you take out the balls and start playing, here is a drill that fully warms up the jumping and swinging muscles so that players are truly ready to begin practice.

Basically, it is a transition simulation drill. It will get the blood pumping and the lungs going while also familiarizing your players with the correct movements in transition.

Three players are active in this drill but it can be run on both sides of the net to get more players involved at a time. Place a left front, middle front and right front at the net in their starting positions.

If you like, you can use the players in their rightful positions, but it works best if you rotate them through so they play each spot. It is good for players to learn every position because in a game they may end up in a different spot.

The outside blockers should start inside the sideline by a step or two just as they would in a game to help the middle cover the setter or a possible shoot set.

Players will move out to block an imaginary left side hitter. The right side player steps out to block the line, the middle closes to the right side player using a cross-over step and the left side player drops off to dig.

The blockers jump together - you can have them count to three and jump or just time it for when the middle arrives. The left side player gets low to dig.

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Transition Warm-Up - Getting Off the Net

When the blockers land, they immediately turn to quickly get off the net and prepare to hit. The left side player gets outside the court behind the ten foot line and prepares to hit a high outside set.

Make sure that the players do a full block with good arm and hand position and good penetration before they back off. Also make sure they get off the net quickly. This is good both for warming up and because in a game there may not be much time to get off the net and get back up.

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Transition Warm-Up - Hitting Approach

Once all the players are back at or beyond the ten-foot line, they will use a proper approach and swing through as if they are hitting the ball. This helps them to warm up their arms and shoulders as well as their legs.

The right side hitter will approach for a high back set, the middle for a quick set and the outside for a high four set. You can vary the approaches depending on what set you would like them to simulate hitting. For instance, you can have the right side hitter run an X play.

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Transition Warm-Up - Blocking the Opposite

After they approach, jump and simulate hitting their set, they should quickly get back into their starting block position. This time, they will block an imaginary right side hitter.

The drill works the same way, except this time the middle closes to the left side blocker using the cross-over step. The left side blocker takes a side-step out to the sideline to set the block. The right side blocker peels off the net and gets low to play defense.

The middle and left side blocker jump together (again on the middle's count) and display proper hand and arm position as well as good penetration over the net.

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Transition Warm-Up - Getting Off the Net

Just as they did when blocking the left side, the hitters will again get off the net and into position to begin their approach. The middle hitter will get off to the middle of the court, the left side hitter will get past the ten foot line and just outside the sideline and the right side player will go from the defensive position to the sideline to prepare to approach.

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Volleyball Drills: Hitting Approach

From the proper spots, the players will approach and swing through again as if they are hitting the ball. The players will then run the play the coach has specified or just the simple Four - One - Five play.

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Transition Warm-Up - Three-Person Block

The third and final time through this drill, the players will simulate getting a three-person block up on the opponent's middle. From the original starting positions, the middle will stay put and the left side and right side blockers will close to her. Once again they will jump on the middle's count if necessary. Again, make sure that proper blocking footwork and positioning is used. Both outside blockers should use a cross-over step to close to the middle blocker.

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Volleyball Drills: Getting Off the Net

For the final time, the players will turn and get off the net. Make sure the outside blockers turn and run to get to their positions as they will have more ground to cover to get into position to approach when they are coming from the middle. Players should make quick work of getting out to the sidelines and prepare to approach.

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Transition Warm-Up - Hitting Approach

For the final time, hitters will line up at the proper spots, approach and swing through again as if they are hitting the ball. At this point their turn has ended and they can either rotate through to the next position (OH becomes middle, MB becomes OPP and OPP either goes out or becomes OH on opposite side of the net.) Or you can switch out all three players and bring in a new front line to work the drill.