RECREATIONAL VOLLEYBALL RULES
FPYC will follow the National High School Federation (NHSF) Volleyball rules (rally point scoring and net serves are in play) except as noted below.
Coaches and referees should keep a copy of these rules with them at the matches so that rule questions can be clarified as needed.
The county allocates gym time to FPYC with the understanding that the gym rules will be adhered to by the occupants of the gym. The following rules need to be followed by players, coaches and spectators as part of the code of conduct:
- ALL younger children MUST be with their parents. They are not allowed to wander outside the gym without an adult and shall not be allowed to run around the court during game play or practices.
- No one is permitted to wander around the schools unless it is to utilize the restroom facilities.
- Do not remove or move any school equipment other than what belongs to FPYC. If chairs are provided in the gym space they can be utilized however do not go searching for seating. Advise spectators to bring outdoor chairs to the events.
- Do not climb on the bleachers to retrieve balls. Please allow the school to return them or a coach to retrieve them.
- Only play with the FPYC Volleyballs inside the gym area and not through the school hallways or outside on the pavement.
- Do not play with other sporting equipment during the games, including but not limited to non-game volleyballs, soccer balls or basketballs.
- Please throw away trash in the trash cans and double check the gym before leaving.
Please remember we are guests at the schools we use for the volleyball league. Violations of these rules may result in loss of access to school facilities. Please help us in maintaining a good relationship with the schools.
A team consist of the youth that are on the FPYC team roster, along with their coach and/or assistant coach. Only team members listed on the roster can participate in games, matches or practices. A team captain(s) should be chosen for each game. The team captain(s) represents the team in the coin toss at the pre-match conference.
All coaches MUST be registered through FPYC including but not limited to assistant coaches, substitute coaches and official parent helpers. Coaches must be 18 years or older; assistant coaches can be under 18 with adult supervision.
Parents should not offer instruction or interfere with the coaches’ job during practices or games. The coaches are volunteering their time and effort to the program and should be given the respect they deserve. Parents can assist the coaches by having players at all the practices and games on time and picking up their child immediately after practices and games. While it is understood that illnesses and conflicts to schedules will come up, the parents are expected to communicate with the coach if their player is going to miss a game or practice.
Players are provided with a FPYC uniforms during the season and are highly recommended at games. If your player is unable to wear their uniform, please have them wear a like colored t-shirt similar to the uniform color of their team. Players are to wear shorts or pants, knee pads, t-shirt/jersey and athletic shoes at games and practices.
Players with long hair should have their hair pulled back and out of their face.
Coaches are provided with a bag of volleyballs, flip scoreboard and bag cart at the start of the season. Teams are responsible for the set up and take down of the equipment at both the practices and games (parents can and should help with this). Even when teams are not playing at their home gyms they should participate in setting up and taking down the equipment with the opposing team. Please do not write on the volleyballs, the only thing that should be on our volleyballs are FPYC.
If a coach needs to change schedules for practices or games he/she will need to communicate with the opposing team and alert the FPYC director and coordinators, once an agreement has been made. The only time a game or practice is cancelled due to a scheduling conflict with the school’s gym availability.
PREPARATION FOR THE GAMES
Each team MUST provide a scorekeeper and a line judge to assist with the game. The line judge and scorekeeper should report to the referee for instructions prior to the game start. The line judges will stand at the back corner of each court, on the opposite side of the server.
FORMAT FOR GAMES
The following format will be used for all games:
- A referee will be provided. If a referee is unavailable for the game, the coaches must agree to co-ref the game.
- There will be an official warm up session prior to each game. The warm up session begins at the time listed on the schedule for the start of the game. The length will be 15 minutes – 5 minutes per team to have entire court and 5 minutes of shared serving time. The game will begin after the 15 minute warm up time.
- During the warm up time the referee will call for the team captains for the pregame coin toss. The team that wins the coin toss has the choice of either the serving the ball first or choice of side they want their team to play on for the first match. The other captain takes the remaining alternative.
- At the end of the warm-ups the referee will call for match start, meaning that all the balls need to be off the court and the game ball needs to be provided to the referee. Please only bag the number of volleyballs that you came with.
- The referee will blow the whistle at the start of the first match indicating that all starting players need to be in their positions on the court and all other team members, coaches and spectators off of the court.
- The first 2 matches are played to 25 points, and a team must win by 2 points.
- Immediately after the first match the teams should switch sides and take their places on the court for the second match. There will be NO longer than 2 minutes between the first and second match.
- After the second match the referee will again call for team captains. The referee will conduct a coin toss for the 3rd match and the winner of the coin toss will have the choice between starting serving or choice of side.
- The 3rd match is played to 15 points, and a team must win by 2 points.
Each team is allowed 2 30 second timeouts per game (not match). SEATING & ETIQUETTE GUIDELINES FOR MATCHES SPECTATOR SEATING, TEAM, SCOREKEEPER, LINE JUDGE &
FPYC Volleyball tries to book a larger gym for games like Lanier Middle School or Luther Jackson so that there is adequate space for players or spectators. However FPYC Volleyball isn’t always able to utilize the gym space when time is needed for game and instead games are played in smaller gyms. Please be courteous and bring your own lawn chairs and give the teams plenty of playing space when utilizing the smaller gyms. For Lanier and Luther Jackson, if a maintenance personnel is available to open the bleachers for the spectators, these can be utilized.
The spectators should always be on the opposite side of the referee and the teams, and never behind the back line. This will help the teams play with all the room they may need with no interruptions.
The teams should always be on the same side of the referee. This will help the teams to hear and understand anything the referee says, as well as not block the view of any of the spectators. No one should pass over the court lines during any part of the game. If someone steps onto the court during gameplay, the referee will stop the play and call for a redo. This applies to coaches, players, spectators, etc.
The scorekeeper should be behind the referee. This will help them hear and understand anything that the referee may say, as well as help the referee make sure the score is being recorded properly.
The line judges will be in opposite back corners of the courts, the referee will tell them exactly where to stand. They are there to help the referee see the line better so please don’t interrupt them during the matches.
VOLLEYBALL MATCHES COURT ETIQUETTE
- Do NOT sit or stand behind the serving lines at any gym. Some gyms are very small and the players are allowed to serve anywhere behind the serving line.
- If an individual needs to move around the gym please wait until the end of gameplay and pass behind the serving line on the outside of the gyms.
- When the referee blows the whistle for the serve to commence, those present at the court should end their conversation and respectfully be quiet until the serve is hit. There are 2 reasons for this. First, the referee needs to hear that the ball was hit (and not thrown). Second, sudden yelling or loud talking is a distraction to the server, especially a young server who is trying to concentrate on serving.
- At the end of the game, the players and coaches from both teams should line up at the net to shake hands. After shaking hands, both teams need to assist in taking down the equipment and returning it to storage.
- If there is a game in session in the gym prior to your team’s game, please group outside of the gym rather than trying to enter the gym. The gyms are small to accommodate multiple teams at once. Instead, wait in the hallway in larger gyms or outside in the smaller gyms.
- When the gameplay has ended, the ball should be rolled UNDER the net to the team that won the play, and therefore, the serve.
- There should be no other sporting equipment being used during the games.
Only a head coach may ask a referee to explain why a call was made or for clarification of a rule. If this occurs, the referee will invite both coaches to listen to the explanation or clarification. Coaches should show good sportsmanship as they communicate with the referees and receive the explanation for a call. Spectators should not be addressing the referees during the games. Any questions a spectator has should be addressed to the coach.
AT THE END OF THE MATCHES
The game ends after the whistle blow for the winning point. The teams will switch court sides before the next match by walking counter clockwise around the edge of the court.
AT THE END OF THE GAME
At the end of the game, all players from each team will move behind the end-line on their court. They will then form a line and approach the net by walking counter-clockwise around the edge of the court and will tap hands with the members of the other team underneath the net, and tell the other team good game or congratulations, as the teams continue walking.
FORFEITS/MINIMUM NUMBER OF PLAYERS
A team must have a minimum of 4 players in uniform to play a game. If less than 4 players come in uniform to a match by 15 minutes after the match start time, the team will forfeit all 3 matches and the other team takes the wins.
If there is a forfeit for a match, the players present, with the coach if they are agreeable, are welcome to use the rest of the gym time. The coaches MUST be present in the gym while there are players on the court.
RULES OF PLAY SERVICE ORDER
First service of the first match is determined in the coin toss with the referee. The team that did not start service in the first match will start service in the second match. First service of the third match will be determined by a coin toss following the second match.
There is NO rotation PRIOR to the FIRST SERVICE in a match.
After the first service of the match, the player to serve is determined as follows:
- When the serving team wins the rally, the player who served before, serves again.
- When the receiving team wins a rally, it gains the right to serve, and rotates clockwise before actually serving. The player who ends up in the serving position will serve. There is always a rotation by the team that gets possession of the ball second.
EXCEPTION: When the serving team wins the rally, the player who served the ball usually serves again. However, because the experience levels of the players vary greatly, for FPYC Volleyball, the number of points that can be served by individual is limited to 5 points in the Elementary and Middle School Levels. No number of points cap is given for High School Levels. Once a server has scored the maximum number of points, the serving team players rotate clockwise and a rotation is made.
The referee signals with a whistle blow when the server can serve after he/she has determined that the teams are in their proper positions and ready. A service before the referee’s whistle is canceled and repealed. If a team repeatedly serves before the referee has blown the whistle for service, the team can penalized and the opposing team will be given a point and service will be given to the other team.
A server can serve the ball from anywhere behind the back line between the two sides lines (as if extended back). A server cannot enter the court until after they have contacted the ball. (They must not cross the serving line until after contact with the ball). A server is allowed to hit the ball out of their hand (i.e. the ball does not have to be dropped before it is hit).
All team members, except the server, should be inside of the court lines at the time of the serve. They must be in correct rotation order prior to the serve. If players are switching positions, then no part of their body should cross with players to the right, left, front, or back of them until the ball is hit for the serve.
High School Teams are encouraged serve overhand throughout the season. Underhand serves are excepted, but overhand is encouraged by the coaches. Middle School Teams can serve underhand but coaches are encouraged to serve overhand. Elementary School Teams can serve either overhand or underhand with modified serving lines.
Modified Serving Lines for Elementary Teams: For the first half of the season, elementary teams can serve 5 feet in from the serve line for underhand serving. The second half of the season, they MUST serve behind the serving line if serving underhand. If elementary teams want to serve overhand, they can utilize the modified serving line during the entire season.
It is encouraged that coaches move their more skilled underhand servers, who are capable of serving from the end of the court, back to the actual serving lines to serve, since in middle school they will need to serve from behind the serve line.
NO OVERHAND SERVES HIT WITH A CLOSED FIST WILL BE
ALLOWED. Referee will interrupt the game, give one warning for a redo. If a team demonstrates close fisted overhand serves, the ball will be forfeited and a point awarded to the opposing team.
If a server does not execute a good toss, they must let the ball drop to the ground without touching it or it is considered a serve hit. There is a limit on how many times a server can repeat their toss during a game, the limit is two.
Middle School and High School coaches should encourage their players to serve the ball within 10 seconds after the referee blows the whistle since this is a requirement for higher level play teams such as high school and club teams.
A serve is legal when it is hit over the net within the boundaries of the antennae and opponent’s court. It may touch the net on a serve, but must fall in the bounds of the opponent’s court.
HITTING THE BALL
The rules for hitting the ball are as follows:
- The ball may touch any part of the body above the waist only.
- A team can hit the ball 3 times (in addition to a block contact) or less to return it to the opponent’s court,
- A player is not allowed to hit the ball consecutively, except when trying to block.
- It two teammates contact the ball simultaneously, it is counted as one hit and any player may play the ball next if it isn’t the 3rd hit.
- The must be hit clearly, no caught or thrown.
ILLEGAL HITS – CARRIES
A lift or carry is when open full hand contact is made with the ball in an upward or outward motion, resulting in the ball remaining in contact with the hand longer ( not including the serve). Example: when the ball is low and a player tries to lift it up, when the ball is behind the head and a forward motion is used, or when the ball is to one side of the player and a sideways motion is used during contact. A carry is a form of “short” catch or thrown.
BACK ROW ATTACK HITS
The rules for attack hits by a back row player reads as follows:
- A back-row player may complete an attack-hit at any height from behind the front zone (behind the 10-foot line). At takeoff, the feet must neither have touched nor crossed over the attack line or its imaginary extension. After the attack hit, the player may land in the front zone.
- A back-row player may also carry out an attack hit from the front zone if, at the time of the contact, any part of the ball is below the top of the net.
- This means that if ANY part of the ball is below the top of the net, then it is a legal hit for a back-row player to make an attack hit. It doesn’t matter if the player jumps or not; the deciding factor is whether ANY part of the ball is below the top of the net (not necessarily the whole ball).
The referee is the one who determines if any part of the ball is below the top of the net and makes the call.
The rules for blocking are as follows:
- Only front row players can block.
- A block is not considered as a team hit (i.e. not counted in the 3 hits a team is allowed, so team is entitled to 3 hits after a block).
- The first hit after the block may be done by any player, including the player that contacted the ball when blocking.
- A serve cannot be blocked.
- When blocking, a player may place their hands beyond the net, inside the antennae, providing they do not interfere with their opponent.
A spike is an attack hit that contains a downward motion. On a serve, only the back line players are allowed to set for Middle School and High School.
NET TOUCH RULES
A player should not contact the tape on the net during a play at the net. However, if they touch a lower part of the net during a play, it is legal. If a player at the net, who is not in the play, touches the net, it is not a violation.
CENTER LINE RULES
A player may cross the centerline as long as:
- Part of the shoe is touching the center line. If the entire foot crosses the center line with no part touching the line, then it is a fault.
- The player does not contact or interfere with a player on the opposing team.
- The player does not contact the tape on the net, standard, or referee while the ball is in play.
BALL IN OR OUT OF BOUNDS
The rules for a ball in or out of bounds are as follows:
- The ball is “in” if the ball touches the floor of the playing court INCLUDING the boundary line (i.e. the ball is in bounds if it touches the court line).
- A ball sent to the opponent’s playing area must pass over the net within the court sidelines and between the antennae if installed, without hitting the ceiling.
- The ball may touch the net while crossing it, if it falls in bounds.
PLAYING OUTSIDE THE COURT TO RETRIEVE BALLS
A player may go outside of the court lines to hit a ball that is still in play.
A player may go around the standard to play a ball and “bring it back” on the 2nd hit, so long as they do not contact the upright, the bench, the scorer’s table, bleachers, referee, referee’s stand, or run into another court where there is a game in progress. If the ball crosses the net on such a play, it must do so OUTSIDE the antenna.
CEILING HIT RULES
The ball can be played off the ceiling on your own team’s side provided it hits the ceiling, ceiling rails, or vents directly over the playing area.
However, if the ball hits the ceiling mounted rolled up gym dividers net at any time, it is out of bounds. If the ball hits a basketball hoop, backboard, or supporting brackets at any time, it is out of bounds. If the ball hits the back wall or dividers, it is out of bounds. If the ball hits the ceiling on the opposite side of the court it is out.
When the ball crosses to the opponent’s side of the net, it must not touch the ceiling.
ROTATION OF PLAYERS
For all teams: EVERY player MUST rotate in during the match. Players will rotate in at the #6 position (see below diagram). A rotation occurs when the team receives the point and serve. A rotation MUST happen before the serve starts.
Coaches should not play the same 6-8 players for one match and then play another 6-8 players for the next match. Everyone must be in the rotation for each match.