There are many aspects to the sport of volleyball. To many coaches, the most important skill to work on is defense. Creating and running volleyball drills for blocking will help your team become much stronger in their defense. If your team has strong defensive skills, they will be able to keep their opponents from scoring. Any lack of score on their side makes it that much easier to score, and ultimately, win on your own side. Here are a few volleyball drills designed to help with blocking that will go a long way toward building that winning team.
When running volleyball drills to strengthen blocking skills, it is important to remember that most blocking will take place right at the net. It is often a one on one play, with the blocker and the hitter virtually face to face. Anticipating where the player in front of the blocker is going to go, going to be, and going to hit is paramount to success. This is just a simple matter of being able to read the hitter. To that end, one of the great volleyball drills to use is the mirror drill. In this drill, two players face each other on either side of the net. They will actually both be playing the part of blockers. The players must mirror the movements of each other. This helps with anticipating where the opponent is going to be, and what he is going to do. Have each player take turns being the lead, so the other blocker is the mirror. Breaking the mirror, or not being able to keep movements symmetrical, three times will result in a penalty. You will find that your players begin to motivate themselves to do the best they can. Be sure to have your players mix things up quite a bit and throw in some surprise moves to be sure the players are kept on their toes.
Another of my favorite blocking volleyball drills is the joust. Jousting is a simple game that pits two blockers against each other. Have your blockers stand on either side of the net. You will then toss the ball in such a way that it will be centered over the net between the two defenders. The defenders then have the option to decide if they want to defend the shot of go for the kill. Ultimately, either way is going to have the ball get through one of the players. The players score one point for each successful block, and one point for each successful kill. The first player to 10 points wins. The loser will be penalized. For added interest, you can divide the team into 2 teams and keep a running total of the team score, penalizing the losing team. The reason that this drill works so well is because it teaches the players to look at the dynamics of their opponent. A shorter player will find that their strategy, whether to block or score, will change if they are facing a taller player. Two players of roughly the same height will have to decide what to do based on what they feel their opponent is going to do. To this end, it is important that you mix up the couplings, to give each player a variety of opponent types to face off with.
A good set of volleyball drills for blocking will help your team go a long way toward becoming a winning team. These two drills alone will help your blockers have the edge over any other team in your league. They will help build anticipation and analysis skills, which count for so much more than simple brute strength and repetition of basic skills. There are many more defensive volleyball drills that you will learn, but adding these two in your practice book will ensure that you have some of the best blockers in the game.