Volleyball glossary


Volleyball glossary



Volleyball is a very popular sport that many people play in Japan.

The games are broadcast on TV, and I’m sure many people are fascinated by the cuteness of the female volleyball players and the coolness of the male volleyball players.


However, it is important to understand the rules and terminology of volleyball.

I want to enjoy watching volleyball, right?


Here we explain basic terms often used in volleyball.

For those who want to start playing volleyball, those who are new to volleyball, and those who want to enjoy watching volleyball.

Please feel free to use it as a reference.



What is out?

The ball falls outside the court line without touching the court line.


What is out of play?

The time between the end of a rally and the start of the next rally


What is out of position?

Old name for positional fault

A foul committed when a player is not in the designated position during a reception.


What is an outside hitter?

Players hitting spikes from the left and right sides of the court


What is an attacker?

A player who attacks


What is an attack?

Attack (attack hit) is anything other than serve or block.

This is an offensive play in which you attack the opponent’s court and score points.

Often used interchangeably with spike


What is an attack line?

a line drawn down the middle of the court

Pull it 3 meters away from the net

Players in rear guard positions must not jump in front of the attack line.


What is an underhand serve?

serve that hits the ball from below

Also called under serve


What is an underhand receive?

A basic volleyball receive where you bring both arms together and pick up the ball from below near your wrists.

Also called under, under receive, and underhand pass.


What is an antenna?

180cm rod attached to both ends of the net

considered part of the net

If the ball passes outside the antenna and moves into the opponent’s court, or if the ball touches the antenna, the player is out.


What is a mobile attack?

An attack method in which the player using the spikes shoots the spikes while moving around the court.


Example of moving attack → Broad attack

An attack in which the middle blocker runs toward the right field and spikes the ball.


What is Inn?

The ball falling inside the court line

or the ball falling when it touches the court line.


What is Interfair?

A foul committed when touching the ball in the opponent’s court


What is an inner spike?

Spikes that are more angled than cross spikes. Drop a spike near the net in the opponent’s court


What is in-play?

The time from when the serve is hit until either team scores a point


What is Wing Spiker?

A player who spikes from both the left and right sides

Synonymous with outside hitter

*Outside hitter

Players hitting spikes from the left and right sides of the court


What is the warm-up area?

An area where players who are not on the court wait.

Athletes warm up in the warm-up area


What is A-quick?

A quick attack with a short toss up to within 1m in front of the left side.


What is A-Pass?

A clean received ball that accurately returns to the setter setup position.


What is air fake?

An attack method in which the spiker moves his body as if dodging blocks in the air.


What is end line?

The two shorter lines surrounding a rectangular court

If it even slightly touches the end line, it’s in.


What is Overtimes?

A foul that is committed when the ball cannot be returned to the opponent’s court within three attempts.

Former name of Forehit


What is Overnet?

A type of penetration fault in which a part of the body goes over the net and enters the opponent’s court.

A foul committed when touching the ball over the net

Overnet does not apply when blocking


What is an overhand serve?

A serve hit from above the shoulder

It has the advantage of being able to hit the ball with a higher hitting point than an underhand serve.


What is an overhand pass?

A pass in which the ball is raised above the head using both hands.

Raise the ball by forming a triangle with both palms.


What is an open attack?

A basic attack in which a left or right spiker makes a high, slow, mountainous toss.

Also called open spike


What is open spike?

The basic attack method is to hit a large, high, mountainous toss from either the left or right side of the court. Also called open attack

There is plenty of time and space for a run-up, and you can hit a strong spike with a high RBI, but it is easy to match blocks.


What is open toss?

A toss in which the ball is raised in a loose, mountainous manner to the left and right attackers on the left and right sides of the court.

Attacking (spiking) an open toss is called an open attack.


What is an off-speed shot?

A slow speed spike, also called a soft attack.

Use when you want to hit a spike in a disadvantageous position or when you want it to fall at a targeted location.


What is Opposite?

A spiker positioned diagonally opposite the setter. A super offensive player who doesn’t participate in defense and specializes in spikes.

Formerly called super ace or light player

Opposite is sometimes written as OP.


What is arranged marriage?

Players giving up the ball to each other and causing the ball to fall onto the court.


What is rotation receive?

How to receive by falling forward from your shoulders, then turn your body once to return to position.

Since you can quickly recover your posture, you can move on to the next movement immediately.


What is Kanchan?

Kanchan (Kanchan block) indicates that there is an open space between blocks when multiple players jump to the block.

Origin of the term mahjong


What is the opposite foot?

A right-handed athlete takes off and jumps with his right foot at the end of his run-up.

(If you are a left-handed player, take off with your left foot at the end of your run-up)


What is catch ball?

The act of catching and grabbing the ball with a part of the body (foul)


What is a kill block?

A block that knocks the opponent’s attack directly down into the opponent’s court.


What is Quick (Quick Attack)?

An attack that spikes a quick, low toss.

Broadly speaking, there are A quick, B quick, C quick, and D quick.


What is quick toss?

A short, low toss when making a quick attack.


What is cross spike?

A spike that is hit diagonally towards the left side of the opponent’s court if it is a left ball, or towards the right side if it is a right ball.


What is Guess Block?

A block in which an individual blocker anticipates the player who will spike before the opposing setter raises the toss.


What is a commit block?

Blocks that fly according to the movement of the opponent spiker


What is a combination?

When using spikes, use allies as bait, change the attack position, use time differences, etc.

A coordinated attack that confuses the opponent’s defense.


What is third tempo?

The spiker begins his run-up after the setter’s toss has been raised.

The setter makes a big orbital toss to give the spiker more room to run up.


What is a server?

A player who serves


What is Service Ace?

He can’t receive the serve and it ends up being a point.


What is a service zone?

The area where the server can serve

(Area behind the end line/on the extension of the side line)


What is a service fault?

to fail a serve


What is serve?

The first play of a volleyball game, a play in which a player hits from the service area of the court toward the opposing team’s court.

It will be a foul if the ball is not hit within 8 seconds after the referee blows the whistle.


What is the right to serve?

The right to serve


What is serve receive?

Former name of reception

Refers to receiving the opponent’s serve


What is sideline?

Two long lines drawn on the sides of a rectangular coat

(If the ball touches the sideline even slightly, it will be judged as in.)


What is the side-out system?

Scoring system used in the past in volleyball

Points are scored only when the team with the right to serve wins the rally.

If a team that does not have the right to serve wins the rally, it gains the right to serve.

*Currently changed to rally point system


What is a side band?

A white band attached directly above the sideline on both sides of the volleyball net.


What is side hand serve?

A serve method in which the arm is swung beside the body and parallel to the ground.


What is a triple attack?

A common attack in volleyball that connects with a receive, toss, and attack.


What is C-quick?

A quick attack in which the setter makes a short toss towards right field with a back toss.


What is a time difference attack?

A spike that shifts the timing of the opponent’s block

As a way to shift the timing, you can pretend that a teammate is spiking and use it as a decoy.

There are methods such as shifting the jump by one tempo.


What is shutout?

A blocker blocks an opponent’s attacker’s spike and drops it into the opponent’s court, directly scoring a point for his team.


What is a jumping serve?

A serve that is hit in the air by jumping.

There is a jump floater serve and a spike serve.


What is jump toss?

A toss made by jumping


What is single hand?

Receiving or passing with only one hand


What is a synchronized attack?

An attack method in which two or more players move at the same time and launch attacks with the same timing, tempo, and rhythm.


What is suction?

When blocking an opponent’s attack, the ball falls between the net and the blocking player.


What is a switch?

Changing the blocking position of multiple blockers

(Alternative name: block change)


What is a spike?

An attack in which the attacker jumps and slams into the opponent’s court. Also called attack


What is spike serve?

One of the ways to serve, serve with spike movement


What is second tempo?

The attacker begins his run-up almost at the same time as the setter’s toss is lifted.


What is a setter?

A player whose role is to raise (toss) the ball to a position where it is easy for the spiker to spike.


What is setup?

A toss by the setter to the attacker (spiker)


What is a set point?

If you can get one more point, you can win the set.


What is a center (center player)?

Old name for middle blocker

A player who plays blocks and makes quick attacks in the center position, the center of the forward line.


What is center line?

A 5cm wide white line drawn in the center of the court, just below the net.


What is soft block?

block type

A block whose purpose is to weaken the power of an opponent attacker’s spike with a single touch.


What is timeout?

Each team can take up to two breaks during a match. Interruption time is 30 seconds

It is mainly used to check tactics, change bad trends, and give players a break.


What is a direct attack?

Direct attack (direct spike) is to directly attack (spike) the ball returned from the opposing team without receiving it.

There is no time to block, so it is easy to decide.

In addition, since he attacks chance balls that are close to the net without being hindered by blocks (balls that come from the front and are easy to hit), it becomes a dynamic attack that gets the venue and his team excited!


What is Touchnet?

Foul of touching the net during in-play (including antenna and white belt)


What is double contact?

A foul in which one player touches the ball twice in a row.

*Only when the player touches the ball with a first contact block, the same player’s receiving will not be subject to double contact.


What is Challenge (Challenge System)?

A system that allows the team manager or captain to request a re-judgment using video if they are dissatisfied with the referee’s judgement.

You can request up to two reps per set, and if the challenge is successful (if the referee’s decision is wrong), the number of reps will not be reduced.

Scenes that can be challenged

In/out of the ball, presence or absence of touch net, presence or absence of one-touch block, etc.


What is Chance Ball?

Returning a simple ball that is easy to handle


What is Two Attack?

An attack method in which the setter spikes the ball into the opponent’s court while pretending to make a toss.


What is a two setter?

Offensive formation with 2 of 6 players as setters

The advantage of two setters is that the player in the rear of the two setters acts as the setter, so it is possible to create a situation where there are always three attackers in the front.


What is D-Quick?

A quick attack in which the setter makes a low back toss to a distance of 2 to 3 meters on the right side.


What is Dig?

To receive an opponent’s attack (spike)

Also called spike receive


What is delay in service?

Also known as the 8 second rule

A foul if the serve is not served within 8 seconds after the referee’s whistle blows.


What is technical timeout?

System used in international matches and V League

When the winning team scores 8 or 16 points during a set, a one-minute timeout will be given to both teams.


What is ceiling serve?

A high serve where the ball seems to reach the ceiling.


What is toss?

A pass used to force an attacker to hit the ball


What is tossfeint?

An attack in which the setter pretends to toss the ball and drops the ball into the opponent’s court.


What is Driveserve?

A serve that applies vertical topspin to the ball and hits it hard.

A drive serve falls sharply downward compared to a normal serve.


What is dribbling?

Old name for double contact

A foul act in which the same player touches the ball repeatedly



What is Nicekey?

A shout to be made when a wonderfully powerful spike is decided.

Spike is also called kill, and Nice Key is used as an abbreviation for Nice Skill.


What is soft hitting?

hit the ball loosely and with less force

Used to ensure the ball is returned to the opponent’s court, such as when the system is broken and you are unable to return a strong ball.


What is a two-stage attack?

Hitting the receiving ball a second time without tossing it

*Ball contact is allowed up to 3 times.

*Usually, an attack is performed in the order of receive → toss → attack (spike).


What is 2-stage toss?

A toss given to an attacker (spiker) from a position where the ball is away from the net.

A toss raised by a player other than the setter when a reception or dig does not return to the setter’s position.


What is 2-piece replacement?

Substitute two players at the same time when making a substitution


What is Net Inserve?

The ball that is served touches the net and enters the opponent’s court.


What is Net Touch?

About touchnet

A foul in which a part of the body touches the net, white belt, or antenna during play.


What is No Touch Ace?

A service ace where the serve falls directly into the court without touching any players on the opposing team.



What is a pass?

General play in which the ball is sent to a teammate player


What is the 8 second rule?

About delay-in service

A foul committed when a serve is not served within 8 seconds after the referee’s whistle blows.


What is a back attack?

A player in the rear guard spikes from behind the attack line.

By the way, if a player in the back row jumps in front of the attack line (or jumps by stepping on the attack line) and spikes, it is a violation.


What is the passing center line?

A foul that involves stepping over the center line drawn in the center of the court (below the net)

A type of penetration fault


What is the back zone?

zone between attack line and back line


What is backtoss?

A toss that the setter raises behind himself


What is pancake (pancake receive)?

Sliding head first, reaching out with one hand just before the ball falls and receiving it with the back of the hand.


What is B-Quick?

A quick attack in which the setter makes a low toss to a distance of 2 to 3 meters on the left side.


What is a one-person time difference attack?

A feint attack in which the spiker makes a feint and hits the opponent’s blocker out of timing.

*If you jump, you will pretend to make the opponent’s blocker jump, then shift the timing by one tempo and jump and attack.


What is a pinch server?

A player who serves as a substitute during a serve.


What is fast tempo?

A quick attack in which the attacker makes a run-up before the toss goes up and matches the toss with the attacker.


What is a feint?

A feint in volleyball is an attack that pretends to hit a strong spike, but uses your fingers to drop the ball into the opponent’s court without using force.


What is a fault?

Foul, failure, violation


What is a fore hit?

Foul of not returning the ball in the third inning, touching the ball four or more times and returning the ball to the opponent’s court.

Formerly known as Overtimes


What is a forward?

The three players in the front line. The forwards take turns in rotation.


What is push?

An attack that pretends to hit a spike and then pushes (pushes) the ball into a space where there are no opposing players.


What is a foot fault?

A foul where a player steps on (or crosses) the end line when serving.

When hitting a jump-type serve, it is not a foul even if it crosses the end line when landing.


What is a break?

Scoring a point while having the right to serve


What is floater serve?

A serve where you raise the ball above yourself and hit it like a spike without jumping.


What is a broad attack?

A moving attack in which the middle blocker runs toward the right field and jumps with one foot to spike.


What is a blocker?

Advance player to jump and block opponent’s spikes


What is a block?

To guard (block) to prevent the opponent’s spike


What is blockout?

A blocked ball falling outside the court (going out)


What is block following?

Anticipating that the ball will hit a block and fall onto your own court, and prepare in advance to receive the ball in a place where it is likely to fall (often near the blocker).


What is the front zone?

Front of court, zone between center line and attack line


What is parallel toss?

A straight and fast toss.

A play that has the advantage of making it difficult for the blocker to match the blocks, but requires a high level of skill from the setter and attacker.


What is a penetration fault?

A foul act that involves invading the opponent’s court.


What is positional fault?

A foul committed when a player is not in the designated position at the time of reception (receive serve)


What is a holding?

Old name for catch ball

A foul act committed when catching or holding the ball

*Catching the ball with the palm of your hand when tossing it.

When under-receiving, if you cradle the ball, your holding will be lost.


What is ball dead?

Time at which the match is stopped and play is void.



What is a marker?

An antenna attached to the net


What is negative tempo?

A very fast attack in which the spiker completes its jump and is in attack position when the toss is raised.


What is a matchup?

The relationship between the attacker who spikes and the blocker who blocks it.


What is match point?

A situation in which the outcome of the game is determined by just one more point.


What is a middle blocker?

Formerly known as center player

A player who plays the role of blocking, quick, and broad attacks in the center position.



What is light?

The area on the right side of the court facing the net.

About light players


What is light open?

Open attack from the right field


What is a line judge?

An umpire who judges whether a ball that falls on the line is in or out.

Also called linesman or linesman


What is Larry?

The attack and defense from the reception (serve/receive) until one team scores a point.

To win a rally means to win a long battle with your opponent.


What is the rally point system?

The current volleyball system allows you to score points even if you do not have the right to serve.


What is a lead block?

A blocking method in which the blocker blocks according to the opponent team’s toss or attacker’s movement.


What is rebound?

When an attacker lightly hits the ball and intentionally hits the opponent’s blocker’s hand to return the chance ball to his own court.


What is Libero?

A defensive player who cannot attack and only plays defense in the rear.

Players are required to wear a uniform that is a different color from other players.


What is a receiver?

A player who receives (receives) an opponent’s attack.


What is receive?

receiving the ball from the opposing team


What is reception?

The action of receiving an opponent’s serve

Formerly known as serve receive


What is left?

The area on the left side of the court facing the net.

Left player abbreviation


What is left open?

An open spike hit from the left.


What is rotation?

Move one position clockwise from one position to another each time a point is scored.


What is rotation mistake?

Wrong position during rotation


What is one touch?

the ball hitting a part of the body

*Mainly used when the spike hits the blocker’s hand when blocking.


What is one hand receive?

Receiving performed with one hand


What is one point blocker?

A player who is replaced at one point to strengthen the block.






How did you like the volleyball glossary?

Volleyball is a sport that has been around for a long time, and is especially popular among women.

However, I don’t think there were many people who knew the detailed rules and terminology of volleyball.


This page contains information that everyone from beginners to volleyball players to those who are playing volleyball can learn from.


Even people who only watch volleyball but don’t actually play it.

Just know the terms in this valley glossary

It should make watching volleyball more enjoyable.


Volleyball is expected to become more popular in the future…

Would you like to join your local mom volleyball club and enjoy playing volleyball?

When you start playing volleyball, please refer to this page.

Please deepen your knowledge of volleyball.


By the way, Mama-san Volleyball is about compatibility, and Mama-san Volleyball is actually just a local volleyball club.

It’s okay if you’re a single guy! (However, I feel like there aren’t that many young women…so don’t expect too much from them lol)

It is a perfect sport to relieve lack of exercise.


Let’s enjoy valley!

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