Clinician: Jim Stone, head coach of the US girls' youth national team
Purpose: To get players warmed up with three different variations of partner ball-control drills, focusing on volleyball as a game of rhythm. The focus is on tempo setting.
How it Works:
- First Drill: Players split up into pairs with one player at the net and the other player in the back half of the court. One player tosses an antenna-height ball to the other player and they alternate hand passing the ball back and forth. The intent of this particular drill is to practice hand passing the occasional free ball, rather than passing with a platform.
- Second Drill: The partner at the net starts with the ball, and one out of the three players at the net is the designated “caller.” That player will signal the three players at the net to toss their balls to their partner, at antenna-height, by saying “Ready? Toss!” The partners in the back half of the court will set back to their partners, also at antenna-height. Once the designated caller receives the ball, she will set it back to her partner but call “Set!” right as she touches the ball. The intent is that all three pairs of players will be setting in sync if the height of the sets are accurate.
- Third Drill: One setter will be in middle front on each side. This setter will be setting first a set to the outside, and then a back set to the right front player. Essentially, two triangles will all be setting at the same time but sharing the setter in middle front. The left front player will set to a player in left back, and that player will set back to the setter. The right front player, after receiving a back set from the middle front setter, will set back to the right back player, and that player will set to the middle front setter. This is a continuous drill and is dependent on the right tempo of setting in order for it to go on.
Requirements: 12 players, 6 balls, a full court and a coach