10 Beginner Volleyball Skills for Right Side Hitters




man hitting a volleyball over a net


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Developing strong hitting skills is important for volleyball. When harnessed properly, you will be able to launch an effective attack and get your team some points. 

The good news is that this is a skill that you can hone over time. Keep reading to learn some tips on how right-side hitters can improve their abilities.

1. Speed

Volleyball is a fast-paced game. You won’t have a lot of time to get into position, so it’s important to work on building your speed. There are several drills you can use to improve your speed. For example, you might want to run from one side of the court to the other. Time yourself to see improvements in your performance.

You should make sure that you are focusing on improving your lateral motion. You use cones to help you do this. The aim is to move quickly between the cones, keeping your back straight and your eyes in front of you. This exercise is a good way of improving your cardio to boost endurance on the court.

Court shoe

2. Using the Right Footwork

Being a hitter isn’t just about your upper body. You need to think about your footwork. This will allow you to jump high enough to spike the ball onto the court. Here are some additional tips to make spiking the ball easier:

  • Face towards the net: The first thing that you need to do is you are positioned so that you are facing the net. This gives you more hitting options to explore. You can rotate your body to hit the ball across the court. Or you can hit it straight for a line hit.
  • Hit the top of the ball, aiming down: Yes, this will require jumping high. But to get the maximum force and aim, you want to hit the top of the ball, drilling it down into the floor.
  • Start from behind the ten-foot line. This gives you the approach needed to jump into the air and hit the ball efficiently. If you are taller, you might need to stand a little further back.

You can ask your coach about this approach, to check your footwork and give you some tips on your posture. If you can nail this aspect, it will be a lot easier for you to hit the ball with accuracy.

3. Delivering Offensive Power

As a right-side hitter, you have a few important tasks. Part of your role will be to play defensively, getting to the ball before it can land on the court. However, it’s also important to be able to launch an effective offensive attack.

To do this, you will need to have plenty of power. Often, this will come from practice and training. The more time you spend on the court, the more confidence you will develop in your hitting ability.

4. Accurate Shot Placement

The offense is one of the most important roles that a right-side hitter will employ. It is often under-utilized, so becoming an effective right-side hitter is a great asset to the team. To do this job effectively, you will need to be able to make an accurate shot across the court. Click here for How to Improve Your Aim in Volleyball

This position also requires you to have some tactical knowledge. Before you take the shot, it’s important to look across the court. Look for any gaps in the opponent’s defenses.

Hitting a beach volleyball

5. Being Able to Jump

The right-hitter position is very physical. It will require you to be able to jump with enough height to spike the ball during an offensive maneuver. This is something that will require plenty of lower body strength. Because of this, you will need to practice this area frequently in training.  It can also be a good idea to do some exercises, like squats, to help you build leg muscle.

The right-side position is also positioned to block the left-side hitter on the opposing side, which is frequently where the opposing hit is coming from. A right-side hitter does A LOT of jumping, so being in good physical shape is definitely important. Click here for 10 Volleyball Tips to Improve Jumping

6. Setting the Ball

Another responsibility that the right-side player might need to take on is the need to set the ball, whether as the primary setter or as the back-up. This literally means setting your teammates up to spike the ball over the net. There are a few tips that you need to keep in mind when developing this skill, these are:

  • Put your arms over your head. In this position, your elbows are at a 45-degree angle.
  • Place your hands about six inches apart. Imagine that you are going to rest the ball in your hands. You should be making a triangular target, in the space where you want the ball to land. Keep your hands relaxed.
  • Slightly absorb the impact of the ball, then push with your fingers. You can’t let the ball touch your palms. Sometimes, the referee will deem that this constitutes catching the ball, causing your team to lose the point.
  • Straighten your legs and arms. Push from your heels, using the force to set the ball.

Like all the other skills on this list, you can’t expect to set perfectly on the first attempt.  But, with a little practice, you should be able to get good at setting up the shot for your teammates.

Read more in this article: 23 Tips to Become the Best Volleyball Setter

7. Blocking Attacks

As the right-side hitter, you will play a defensive role. You will often be the first player to get the ball. This means that you will need to get good at blocking attacks. This means that you need to make sure that you are keeping your eyes on the ball, so you know where it is going to land.

It’s also a good idea to think about the approach of the opposite team. Throughout the game, you will get an idea of what areas they are more likely to target. This will allow you to prepare.

Diving for a beach volleyball

8. Digging the Ball

A key part of your defence is the ability to dig the ball. This prevents the opposing team from scoring a point on their attack and allows your team to get their offence started. Here are the basics of how you can dig the ball:

  • Bend your knees and lean forward. As you are doing this, you want to be light on your toes. This allows you to be prepared to adjust positions to hit the ball. 
  • Create a platform for the ball. Join your hands together. Make sure that the thumbs are side by side. This will form a flat platform to bounce the ball off.
  • Aim with your shoulders. Finally, you want to push forward with your knees, swinging your arms to hit the ball. You want to aim with your shoulders, rather than trying to aim with your forearms.

9. Working With Middle Blocker

Volleyball isn’t an individual game. While you will need to get good at communicating with everyone on your team, it’s especially important to get to know your middle blocker. You will need to work together to decide how to approach defensive blocks. You don’t want to both be running for the ball at the same time, with the risk that you will hit each other. Some people like to shout during the match, indicating which person is going to block.

10. Being Able to Stay Calm Under Pressure

Finally, being a right-hitter can come with a lot of responsibility. You will need to be both part of the offense and part of the defense. Often, this means that you will see a lot of action during the game.

The best way to manage this pressure is to take a deep breath and stay calm. Just focus on the next play. If you have done all the training, you know that you can take on whatever the game can throw at you.

Final Thoughts

The right-side hitter is a very specialized position on the team. It will be a lot of work to learn the skills needed to play this position effectively. But, if you put in the work, you will be able to reap the rewards. A good right-hand hitter will be the key to leading their team to victory. 

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