The competitive drill you’ll see here gives players maximum serve- and serve-receive reps. It was run at a recent practice by Nabil Mardini's women's team at Pierce Community College, which won California Community College Athletic Assn. championships in 2010, 2011 and 2012.
Each team has four players, and everybody is front-row eligible. By taking the 10-foot line out of the equation, points come and go quickly, which increases the number of serving and passing reps. To make the drill go even more quickly, Nabil gives players just 2 seconds to get behind the service line after each point and then 6 seconds to serve.
The drill starts with score tied at 22. To earn a "real" point, the serving side needs to get three points in a row and the receiving side needs to get four points in a row.
Everyone on the service team serves three balls total before a teammate takes the serve. Before the third serve, the server must tell the next player that it’s her turn to serve next. This way, the drill never stops and the players are aware of the service order.
The first two 2 points start with a player serving, and the next two start with the coach chipping or throwing the ball over the net. It alternates like that – two serves, two chips – until one team reaches 25.
For setters, this is a chance to work on serve-receive entries in each rotation: 1, 3, 4, where they have to move and go hard to get to their spot, and 2, which gives them a bit of a rest since they’re already in right front.