In football (American) you often see teams play the field position game.
Basically, that means they attempt to put the opposition in a situation where they are close to their own goal line. Teams do this by punting when near the middle of the field because they don’t like the odds of going for it on fourth down. The hope is that this eventually results in a scoring opportunity because of a turnover or getting possession back with a short field.
There are similar strategies in rugby.
There is a parallel to this approach in volleyball. Admittedly, you probably see it more in the women’s game than in the men’s.
I’m talking about intentionally taking the other team out of system. You do this when you don’t have a good opportunity to get a kill yourself. Basically, it increases the odds you get another attack opportunity or that your opponent errs.
How is this done?
It is most easily accomplished by tipping or attacking at the setter. That is the most direct way to get a team out of system.
You can also try to get the opposing defenders on the floor. A tip to an undefended area will often do this. If you can force a front row attacker to play the ball, you decrease their chances of attacking aggressively in transition.
Alternatively, you can attack a part of the court that is hard to defend. A ball to one of the deep corners usually forces a defender to have to chase the ball. That often results in less than perfect digs.
As in the football example, the idea is to keep putting the opponent in a bad position so you increase the odds of winning the rally. It relates to the idea of playing conservatively to win. This is one of the things we need to train our players to be able to recognize and execute.
6 Steps to Better Practices - Free Guide
Subscribe to my weekly newsletter today and get this free guide to making your practices the best, along with loads more coaching tips and information.