In this session, the 3-time Olympian with 72 career titles has her players work on hitting from both the left and right side as well left-side defense, transition hitting and serving to specific spots.
Players participating in this session are Gigi Hernandez (a junior at JSerra Catholic High in San Juan Capistrano, California, who will play beach at Pepperdine), Abril Bustamante (a senior at Redondo Union High School in Redondo Beach, California, who will play beach at the University of Southern California), Skylar Caputo (a senior at Mira Costa High in Manhattan Beach, California, who will play beach at Pepperdine) and Hayley Hodson (a high school senior who studies online at Laurel Springs and will play indoor at Stanford in the fall).
Dig, set, hit angle from left side
Note that Holly reminds the players to take a wide approach rather than coming straight in when hitting. This helps them face angle in a way that opens up more shot opportunities and is harder for the blocker and defender to read.
Dig, set, hit angle from right side
Competitive drill promoting aggressive serving
Left-side defense: Line block, angle dig, line drop
This drill also focuses on transitioning to offense. Hitters have 4 targets to hit at: short cut, angle, deep middle and line.
Left-side defense: Angle block, line dig, angle drop
Targets for the transitioning attackers are the same as the previous drill: short cut, angle, deep middle and line.
Sideout game: 2 consecutive points earn “real” point
One of the focuses in this drill is to be solid in the wind, bettering every ball for your partner. Holly doesn’t shy away from a friendly scold if she sees a bad habit. In this video, Gigi stabs at a ball with only her right arm and Holly immediately yells, “TWO HANDS!” The idea here is that players often get a little lazy and try to play a ball with one arm that they should play with 2. For control, 2 hands is always better.
Don’t be lazy when digging tough shots
Here, Holly talks about why it’s important for players to get their feet to the ball whenever possible and to use 2 arms for everything but emergency plays.
Holly's final thoughts on Workout 5
Holly also reiterates the importance of training players to serve tough with good location. That takes lots of reps, but servers can get huge benefits from making the receiving team move.