How to Set a Volleyball Without Spin

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One of the biggest reasons why novice players fail to set volleyball accurately is that they create spin while hitting. A ball that’s spinning excessively can change its position by curving to the right or left direction just like a soccer ball.

Therefore, it’s important to avoid spinning the ball while setting so that you can send it to a specific spot accurately. In this article, we’ll discuss a detailed method to help you understand how to set volleyball without spin.

How to Set a Volleyball Without Spin

Learning the correct technique to set the ball without spinning will allow your team to execute attacks successfully. You can use the following steps to keep the ball from spinning while setting.

A close-up image of how to set volleyball without spin

Step 1: Reach the Correct Position in Time

Not having a stable base is one of the biggest reasons why players end up spinning the ball while setting. You need to make sure that you reach the spot where the ball will fall in time. It’ll allow you to get into the setting posture properly before intercepting the ball.

If you’re still running or trying to control your body while intercepting the ball, you’ll most probably end up spinning it. Whereas, you’ll be able to control the ball accurately if you reach the correct position in time.

Step 2: Face Your Target

After getting to the correct position, you’ll need to make sure that your body is facing the target. Most beginners make the mistake of facing the direction of the coming ball. Then they try to move their hands in the left or right direction to send it to an attacker. As a result, they end up spinning the ball.

You don’t want to make the same mistake. The easiest way to avoid it is to choose one of the attackers on your team before you even start moving.

This way, you’ll only need to move your body after getting to the ball’s position to face the target quickly.

Your entire body including your:

  • hands
  • face
  • shoulders
  • chest
  • waist
  • feet

must be facing the attacker.

Important Note: The only exception to this rule is when you’re performing a backset. In this case, your backside should be facing your target as you need to send the ball to your backside. However, the rest of the technique will remain the same.

Step 3: Get Into the Setting Posture

Once you have reached the correct position and your body is facing the direction it’s supposed to, you’ll need to set your body posture.

In order to make the right volleyball setting posture, you’ll need to set your feet no more than shoulder-width apart and bend your knees slightly. Your elbows should also be bent and making about a 45-degree angle with your upper arm with your hands above your head.

The distance between both of your hands should be three to four inches while your index fingers and thumbs make a triangle.

In addition, your fingers should be slightly curved so that their entire surface area can touch the ball while hitting. It’ll also allow you to absorb the impact of the ball and push it toward the target easily. Keep in mind that you’ll only be using your fingers, not your palms to push the ball.

Step 4: Set the Ball

As the ball reaches your fingers, you’ll need to use your entire body to give it a push.

A aerial shot of a player showing how to set volleyball without spin

The Motion of Hands and Wrists

Intercept the ball with your fingers and flick your wrists to push it. Make sure that you apply even pressure using all your fingers while pushing. If you flick one of your wrists faster than the other, the ball will start to spin.

Another common mistake that beginners make while setting the ball is that they use too much follow-through using their wrists. It leads the ball to spin which changes the direction of the projectile. 

Your pass should have as minimum follow-through with your wrists as possible. And the best way to achieve that is to use only your finger and avoid touching the ball with your palms.Arms Motion

You’ll also need to stretch out your arms while touching the ball so that it remains in contact with your hands for a very short time. If the contact is long, the referee may call it a double touch/hit. It happens when a single player hits the ball twice consecutively.

You don’t want that as it’s considered a fault or illegal set and stretching your arms out can help you to avoid it.

Legs Motion

You also need to use your legs while setting the ball. Not only does it allow you to push the ball with more power but it can also help you avoid spinning. It’s especially true when the ball is already spinning and you need more power to control it. Using your legs also helps you keep your arms and hands from getting tired.

You’ll only need to push up with your legs by straightening up the bent knees while hitting the ball. Make sure that you flick your wrists, stretch out your arms, and straighten your legs at the same time.

This way, you’ll push the ball to the hitter with the coordination of your entire body. It’ll reduce your contact time with the ball and minimize the risk of spinning it.

Frequently Asked Questions

The following are some of the most commonly asked questions about setting volleyball without spinning.

Why Is It Important to Set Volleyball Without Spin?

It’s important to set volleyball without spin because it allows you to send the ball to a specific location accurately. If you set a ball with spin, it’ll change its direction on the left or right side. As a result, your team won’t be able to organize and execute an attack successfully.

Learning to set the ball without spin can also help you avoid an illegal set that can happen due to a double touch/hit.

Why Does the Ball Spin in Volleyball While Setting?

Not having a stable posture is one of the most common reasons why the ball spins while setting in volleyball. That’s why you need to make sure that you get into the position, where the ball will drop, in time. It’ll provide you with enough time to set your setting posture to hit the ball properly without spin.

What Is a Good Volleyball Set?

A volleyball set is considered good if it generates very little to no sound and spin. The ball should also go high in the air so that the attacker can get into the position and hit the ball effectively. Mostly, you need to set the ball close to the net. It provides the attacker with an opportunity to hit the ball at an angle that is difficult for the other team to play.

Final Words

The best way to improve your setting technique and eliminate the risk of spinning the ball is to keep practicing. If you’ve just started playing volleyball, you might be facing this problem. But you must not give up and use the method discussed in this guide while practicing.

You can also perform different setting drills with your coach and teammates to improve your setting skills. Make sure that you focus on your running speed, proper setting posture, and the technique to hit the ball to avoid spinning.

Tim Frechette is an avid athlete, having played sports like soccer and basketball his entire life. He brings a wealth of athletic knowledge to his writing.