Players need to serve in the rotational order that they started in for the whole game, even as they rotate with each sideout. If players get the serving order mixed up, the referee will call a rotational violation, which means the team loses a point, and the other team gets the serve. There’s also a positional out of rotation violation. This one’s a little more complicated – but stay with me, it’ll make sense, I promise.
The rotation order is determined by the starting lineup and must be maintained throughout the set, per the NCAA rulebook. To break it down. six players are on the court, three are front-row ...
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Each rotation after wards will assume that the players have rotated one position clockwise like in a game. These positions are based on receiving serve. Here is the diagram for volleyball rotation one: Rotation one has two front row attackers with the setter in the front right position.
There are five positions to play in volleyball and each position is mirrored in the front and back row. For instance, in the rotation in the diagram, the outside hitters play opposite each other—one is in the left front and the other is in the right back. If the team starts the game here, this is rotation one.
The order of rotation is set at the beginning of the game and maintained throughout the game (excepting substitutions). You rotate after you win a point off of the opposing team’s serve. You can use this system to describe where you are in the service rotation. For instance, if you started the game as the server, you would be starting in position 1.
And that is a choice between the 6-2 and the 5-1 volleyball rotation. Of course, there are multiple rotations you can choose from depending on the strengths and weaknesses of your players, but the 6-2 and 5-1 volleyball rotations are far and above the most popular. And in this post we’ll be focusing on the latter.
In rotation 1 we are going to leave our setter in their preferred position at 2 so they can be ready to set. Opposite the setter we obviously have the opposite, now it is quite common for the opposite to be pushed out of the pass, the main reason for this is to allow the opposite to focus on hitting.
In volleyball, it’s more subtle but just as important. The term rotation also refers to this scheme and system. Coaches choose the system they will use depending on their experience and preference but also depending on the composition of their team. The 2 schemes are the 5-1 rotation and the 6-2 rotation.