Every player who plays in a position where hitting well is vital to the success of their team wants to improve this aspect of their game. All it really takes to do so is not just working harder, but just as importantly smarter.
Therefore, we have listed the most efficient ways to become a better hitter in no time.
One of the best and simplest ways you can become better at hitting is by recording yourself as you hit the volleyball. Simply get someone to record you hitting and then analyze your technique, form and timing.
The best way to do this is to record yourself from several different angles, including from the front, back and side. Once this is done you should play back the recording in slow motion so it is easier to pick out the things you are doing right and wrong. For example, a good starting point is to ask yourself the following questions:
- In which position I am strongest hitting (line or cross court)?
- I am timing the ball correctly?
- Is my form correct?
- Am I jumping forward or up?
It may be difficult to answer these questions accurately and perhaps even honestly, as it’s never easy admitting that you may have one or several weaknesses. This is why we recommend showing the recording to your coach, who will know exactly what to look out for and how you can improve on specific aspects.
Communicate With Your Setter
As the setter on your team is one who places the ball in the position so you can hit it, you will definitely want to communicate with him/her. This becomes even more important after you have recorded yourself, analyzed your strengths and weaknesses, and then have gotten to work in making adjustments.
For example, if you’ve realized that you hit best off a higher set, let your setter know so that the sets you receive start to come higher.
Perhaps, you noticed that your percentages go down when the ball is closer or further away from the net. Again, communicate with your setter so he/she knows the best position on court to set to you. And so on.
Hit the Ball Harder
Naturally, every hitter wants to hit the ball harder. There are two ways to ensure you reach this goal.
- As mentioned, record yourself and correct your form so it is the best it can be every time you hit the ball. You may have noticed from watching other volleyball players, either on your team or on T.V, that may not be as strong or as tall as you, yet are still able to hit the ball harder. Utilizing correct form and technique is the reason why.
- The second way (we recommend performing both) is to hit the weights room. Lifting weights is not only beneficial for avoiding injury on the court, but also serves as the best way to strengthen vital muscles used in hitting well, such as your abs, back and shoulder muscles – all of which are key in hitting the ball harder.
Place Your Hits
A good hitter doesn’t just hit the ball as hard as they can and hope for the best. No, instead what a good hitter does is play smart. This is achieved by placing the ball in a position where it is hard for the opposition to return, and speed doesn’t necessarily have to be part of the equation, although achieving both speed and accuracy with every hit is clearly optimal.
The way we suggest to improve the accuracy of your hits may sound surprising, but it certainly works and is also lots of fun.
Of course, hitting drills that focus on accuracy are vital too, but the following is also a fun way to improve your accuracy by focusing on your peripheral vision so you can spot the gaps on the court where hitting the ball to maximizes your chances of winning the point.
We recommend hitting the arcade and playing a good old fashioned game of “Whack-a-Mole” or even simpler and a game you can play at home that works to improve your peripheral vision: 25 Boxes