Volleyball Court Dimensions

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While playing volleyball the other day, the court seemed smaller than expected. This led us to wonder whether some volleyball courts have different dimensions. After some research here’s what we found. 

Volleyball Court Dimensions 

So, what exactly are the dimensions of most volleyball courts? The standard size for an indoor volleyball court above the high school level is 59 feet long and 29.5 feet wide (18×9 meters). Beach Volleyball is played on a court 52.2 feet by 26.2 feet (16×8 meters). Meanwhile high school courts are measured to 60 feet by 30 feet (18.3×9.1 meters).

Ongoing volleyball match between two teams

In addition to different overall court dimensions, there are different attack line lengths, and net heights that vary by gender. Those are covered in more depth below. 

What Do Different Volleyball Courts Look Like? 

The lines inside a volleyball court change slightly depending on if you are an adult and playing inside or outside. The table below summarizes key differences in length, width, attack line and service line.

TypeOverall LengthOverall WidthAttack LineService Line
Indoor 59 feet29 feet 6 inches9 feet 10 inches9 feet 10 inches
Outdoor52 feet 2 inches26 feet 2 inches9 feet 10 inches9 feet 10 inches
High School60 feet30 feet10 feet 9 feet 10 inches

The attack line separates the front and back row players and indicates where front row players may spike or “attack” from. Outdoor volleyball has the smallest court, but the same attack line as an indoor court. Meanwhile courts played in high school or younger are the largest court by several inches and have the farthest attack line.

What About Net Height?

The final step in assembling a regulation volleyball court is a net at the proper height. Surprisingly, all types of volleyball (indoor, outdoor, and high school) use the same height for their net. The differences come in if men or women are playing.

The net height for male players is 7’11 and for females 7’4. This is because on average, men tend to be taller and stronger than women so their nets are made slightly higher. Given that 70% of volleyball players in the U.S are women, most volleyball nets will be the shorter height. 

Vector illustration of a volleyball court dimension

Do Volleyball Rules Change on Different Courts?

Generally, high school volleyball adheres to the same rules that higher level volleyball has, although there are clear differences between the outdoor and indoor sport. USAVolleyball provides a comprehensive guide to all rules for indoor and outdoor playing. Included here are some of the most important differences.

In outdoor volleyball, the game is won after scoring 21 points, while indoor volleyball goes to 25. Outdoor volleyball also usually has only two players with no substitutes but indoor volleyball allows six people on the court with substitutions. Lastly, outdoor volleyball does not allow players to tip the ball over the net with their fingers even though it is allowed indoors.  

There are also different strategies for players based on which court they are playing on. This video covers the skills required for different positions in both indoor and outdoor volleyball. 

Are There Different Ball Sizes Too?

The standard indoor adult volleyball is 25.5 to 26.5 inches (65-67 centimeters). Youth volleyballs are slightly smaller at 24.8 to 25.5 centimeters even though they have the same weight as adult sized balls. Beach volleyballs, on the other hand, are built very differently to withstand outdoor elements.

Outdoor balls are made of leather with outer panels sewn on while indoor balls have glued on panels. There is less air in outdoor balls, making it softer and easier to float. This ball is a larger size than indoor balls, even though they have similar weights. 

Clear view of a volleyball court dimension while two teams are playing against each other

How Else Are the Types of Volleyball Different? 

As you may have already noticed, there are major differences between outdoor and indoor volleyball. Everything from court size to player strategy is slightly different for these two types of play. 

  • Outdoor Volleyball: Outdoor volleyball is, obviously, outdoors. This means players are susceptible to unpredictable weather conditions and must adapt to changing winds and rain that affect ball movement.
  • Indoor Volleyball: Indoors, with a heavier ball and more players, the games are usually faster paced and have more power behind spikes. 

Related Questions

What Are Illegal Hits in Volleyball? 

A player cannot slap, carry, or palm the volleyball. They also cannot hit the ball with two separated hands. There are further rules for when and how players in the back row can spike the ball

Do Free Zones Have Different Dimensions?

Free zones are playable areas beyond the volleyball court’s outer bounds. The FIVB says that outdoor volleyball free zones are 5-6 meters wide, while USAVolleyball puts indoor free zone length at 6-8 meters. Although there isn’t a clear consensus on size, it seems the average length of free zones is around 6 meters (19.6 feet). 

What Volleyball Organizations Can You Join?  

Volleyball has an estimated 900 million fans worldwide, with four major athletic organizations: NCAA, USA Volleyball, NFHS, and FIVB. So if you are looking to join a volleyball team there are lots of options to choose from.

The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) is exclusive to athletes at participating colleges, and the National Federation of State High Schools (NFHS) is intended to provide programs for high school students. International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) and USAVolleyball caters to all ages 11 and above and offers adult recreational teams.  

Conclusion 

There is quite a bit of variation in volleyball court dimensions across indoor, outdoor, and high school levels. Ultimately, the average standard size of an indoor court is 59 feet long and 29.5 feet wide with a net height of 7’11 for men and 7’4 for women. 

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.