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Volleyball Techniques – Controversial Passing Technique



This volleyball techniques section introduces one serve receive technique which divides opinions. Volleyball Passing Techniques

Whether you like this technique or not, we hope you realize there is not one standard way to play volleyball. 

For example serve receive can be performed with several different techniques.

There are several reasonable volleyball techniques

It is good to keep in mind that there are several different setting, passing, hitting, serving and defense techniques.

Some coaches may prefer other techniques over the others - but they all could be reasonable ways to play volleyball. Three Point Serve Receive Techniqe

In this section we’ll bring up facts how to practice this one specific technique, three point serve receive or "knee on the ground serve receive".  

If you want to read more about why practicing this and other “odd techniques” could be a good idea, go to “Volleyball Strategies” section and read the article “Volleyball Strategies for Skills Training - How to Improve Skills”.

What is “knee on the ground” serve receive technique?

As we mentioned on “how to play volleyball” section this topic “knee on the ground” serve receive is a very controversial technique and volleyball people have different strong opinions about.  Volleyball Drills Serve Receive

It is amazing how this technique goes much unnoticed, even though many top level international volleyball players are using it.

Years ago when I first heard about three point serve receive technique, I did not believe it is that important.  After starting to pay attention to it and seeing the proof from the video tapes how often it occurs, I had to start changing my opinion about it. This technique is very commonly used passing technique.

What do we mean by “knee on the ground”?Volleyball Strategies - Serve Receive

A Volleyball player receives a low ball near floor level by placing the other knee on the ground. The knee on the ground helps player to get better balanced position. 

It is often called three point serve receive technique (two feet and knee on the ground equals three)

Volleyball Techniques - How to practice “knee on the ground” serve receive?


Practicing these volleyball techniques require high skills from the person who serves or tosses the ball to the passer.

If serves/tosses are not accurate enough when placing the ball, the drill doesn’t serve its purpose. Volleyball Strategies - Passing TechniquesOften for junior volleyball players these tosses or serves are simply too difficult to perform. It is important to use a person with good ball control as the ball feeder.

  • The server or ball feeder needs to target the balls low in front of the passer. It allows the passer to take a low position, put the other knee on the ground and set up a stable position to pass the ball up to the target.

  • These techniques should be practiced on different distances from the net, not on short serves only. Very often top spin jump serve will drop quickly and the player is forced to perform this low serve receive form.

  • When practicing these volleyball techniques there are not many servers who are able to put the accurate ball by serving over the net. How to Play Volleyball - Passing Skills

    Therefore it is preferable for the server/tosser to step on the box somewhere in the middle of the court and serve/toss the over the net from there.

  • Excellent help on this type of drill would be an automatic ball feeder which sends an accurate ball.

  • Again to make everything run smoothly and efficiently, remember to have a target to return the ball to the feeder. Having “two balls on rotation” between the tosser, passer and the target helps to keep up the tempo. 








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