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Volleyball Rotations - How to Call Volleyball

Court Positions?
Instead of Position 1 or Zone 1, coaches often call these
rotating positions..

P1
P2
P3
P4
P5
P6

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Right Back
Right Front
Middle Front
Left Front
Left Back
Middle Back

Basic starting line up - 6 positions of volleyball in basic 5-1


Rotation
The most common starting line up in the beginning of the games when playing the most common "5-1
offense" is:

6 positions of volleyball in Volleyball 6 2 Rotation


Other commonly used line up is 6-2 rotation. The only difference is when running 6-2 the opposite is
replaced with another setter. It allows team to have three hitters in the front row in all the rotations.

How to remember your playing position?

Please notice it is possible to set up 6-2 line up with other ways also, but the previous one is the most
common form. The basic idea is: the setters, middle blockers and wing hitters (outside hitter/right
side hitter) are opposites of each other.
Several leagues in United States have unlimited substitutions, therefore 6-2 offense is commonly used
formation there. Coaches are able to replace the front row setter with a hitter with no substitution
limits.

6 positions of volleyball with Abbreviations


The following image is the same 6 positions of volleyball with abbreviations - to help you to
comprehend the line up sheets below.

All the 6 positions of volleyball in 5-1


Volleyball Rotation
Right Back Position (Position 1, Right Back, "Zone 1")
"Right back" is the position in the defensive zone (or back row) on the right side of the court (when
looking at the court behind the back line).

This position can be called "right back", position 1, P1, zone 1", "Z1".
Setter usually starts the game on the right back position.
Setter starts from the right back because it allows having three front row attackers more often.
Opposite (the player opposite of setter) is the other player who plays "zone 1", it allows opposite to
perform 3 meter or 10 feet attack from the right side of the court while the setter is playing right front
position (position 2).
The following image is the basic starting serve receive line up when the setter is in the right back
position in 5-1 offense:

Middle Back Position (Position 6, Middle Back, "Zone 6")


"Middle back" is the position in the defensive zone (or back row) on the middle of the court.
This position can be called "middle back", position 6, P6, "zone 6:", "Z1:".

The middle blocker usually starts the game in the line up on the middle back position, but is generally
speaking replaced by the libero, a back row specialist before the first serve.
In competitive volleyball liberos rarely play on this position on the rallies, but are changed to left back
position after the serve when appropriate.
Outside hitter or right side hitter usually plays in the middle back position because it allow them to hit
the ball from zone 6.
This line up sheet is the basic starting serve receive line up when setter is in the middle back position
in 5-1 rotation:

Left Back Position (Position 5, Left Back, "Zone 5")


"Left back" is the position in the defensive zone (or back row) on the left side of the court. This
position can be called "left back", position 5, P5, "zone 5", "Z1" .

Most often the libero plays position 5, or alternatively the middle blocker on one rotation after his/her
own serve. After the serve libero usually subsitutes in for the middle blocker.
The image is the basic starting serve receive line up when the setter is in the left back position in 5-1
offensive rotation:

5- 1 Volleyball Rotation - setter front row


Left Front Position (Position 4, Left Front, "Zone 4" )
"Left front" is the position in the attack zone (or front row) on the left side of the court. This position
can be called "left back", position 4, P4, "zone 4" , "Z4" .

Most often the outside hitter, or in some rotations the opposite hitter or right side hitter plays in this
position.
Sometimes teams may change positions by placing a weaker blocker in this position when they are
having the serve. (Often a short setter is moved away from blocking the opponent's outside hitter and
placed on this position.)
The basic starting serve receive line up when the setter is in the left front position in 5-1 rotation:

Middle Front Position (Position 3, Middle Front," Zone 3" )

"Middle front" is the position in the attack zone (or front row) on the middle of the court. This position
can be called "middle front", position 3, P3, "zone 3" , "Z3" .
The middle hitter plays in this position in all the rotations.
The basic starting serve receive line up when the setter is in the middle front position in 5-1 rotation:

Right Front Position (Position 2, Right Front, "Zone 2" )

"Right front" is the position in the attack zone (or front row) on the middle of the court. This position
can be called "right front", position 2, P2, "zone 3" , "Z3" .
The right side hitter, opposite hitter or setter plays in position 2.
"The following image is the basic starting serve receive line up when setter is in the right front position
in 5-1 offense" :
The offense attempts to hit the ball over the net so that the defense cannot return it. All offensive patterns call for the ball to be passed to a
setter close to the net. The setter then delivers the ball to a spiker to hit into the opponent's court.
4-2 Offensive System
The simplest offense is called the "4-2." This team system is the introduction to specialization and is the basis for other offensive playing
systems. The "4-2" system requires the following personnel:
Two setters: each setter will set three times during his/her front row positions. The setters are placed opposite each other in the rotation. The
setters need to be quick, have stable personalities, and be good ball handlers and leaders.

Four hitters: each will line up in the front row to hit the ball from either the left side, middle or right side. Ideally hitters should be tall and
capable of jumping high. Hitters should possess good individual attack skills and have several types of hits and strong arms. Good
movement skills and quickness are other desirable traits. The ability to block middle or outside is also important.
Two to four defensive specialists: these players substitute when the big front row players reach the back row. These defensive roles are
important. The players need to be quick and tenacious, have good defensive skills, be good servers, and skilled serve receivers.

Note: the 4-2 offense possible starting positions. This diagram shows how the setter should get to the passing target from each starting
position. S1, S2 = Setters; A, B, C, D = hitters; underline indicates a frontrow position. X = passing target that setter should move towards.
The 6-2 Offensive System
The 6-2 offense makes use of 6 hitters and 2 setters. Again the setters are placed opposite each other in the rotation. The setter in the front
row becomes a hitter. This offense gives a team three hitters in the front row as the setter will always come from the back row to set the ball .

Note: The 6-2 offense possible starting positions. In this offense, the setter in the front row becomes a fifth hitter. This diagram shows how
the setter should get to the passing target from each starting position. S1, S2 = Setters; A, B, C, D = hitters; underline indicates a frontrow
position. X = passing target that setter should move towards.
The 5-1 Offensive System
The 5-1 offense is a combination of the 4-2 and 6-2 offensive systems. Five hitters and 1 setter comprise a 5-1 offensive playing system.
When the setter is in the back row, there are three available front row hitters (6-2.) When the setter is in the front row, there are two available
front row hitters (4-2.)

Note: The 5-1 offense possible starting positions. This diagram shows how the setter should get to the passing target from each starting
position. S1, S2 = Setters; A, B, C, D = hitters; underline indicates a frontrow position. X = passing target that setter should move towards.