Beach Volleyball Block or Drop? (HOW TO MAKE GREAT BLOCKING DECISIONS)

Okay, so one of the most important skills
that a blocker can learn how to do is drop back to play defense. So they’re
deciding whether to drop back or stay up and block. That’s a
really important decision to make. For more tips on training for beach volleyball,
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every Tuesday. So here’s the net. We got the setter setting the hitter.
Blocker blocking the hitter. Players back playing defense. In this situation, the setter
sets the hitter to the net. The blocker stays up so there’s just one
defender back playing defense. In this situation, the pass is off the net, the
setter sets off the net and the blocker drops back to play defense. So for when the
sets off the net, you have two defenders back playing defense. Now if you’re
interested in becoming a better defender, be sure to watch my video on how to play
better defense behind a block. The link to watch it is in the description below and
also in the cards in this video. Okay, probably the most important thing
to do is as a blocker, always start at the net and drop back. So you don’t want
to start back and then come up and try to block. You want to always start at the
net and then you should be thinking do I drop back or do I stay up.
That’s what you should be doing. That’s what you should be
focusing on. Okay, so this is why you need to learn how to do this. Okay, so you
might be thinking why not just commit to staying up and blocking, right? Well, the
thing is there will always be situations where it’s better to have two defenders
back and not have the blocker stay up. So for example, when the sets are off the
net and you know the hitters not gonna hit the ball down, then it can be better
to get off the net and help your partner out with defense. I think the reason why
so many blockers get frustrated trying to get good at this, drop them
dropping back the play defense… the reason it’s so difficult is because you have to make a decision on the fly and it could be really hard
making the right decision. So what’s gonna happen is you’re gonna need to
drop back to play defense and maybe the ball was set tighter than you thought
it’d be and you’re like oh I should have been up there or you might stay up and
then the ball is set off the net. Then you’re jumping to block when you know
you probably should drop back. So you know you can get frustrated with these
decisions. Maybe think, I made the wrong decision. The thing is that you
need to practice doing it to get good at it and the more you practice, the
better decisions you’ll make. You just need to keep practicing and you get
better at it and there’s a lot of things that go into it and making a good
decision on this play. It could be you got to factor in how good
is a hitter. How does a hitter swing a lot or do they hit shots and you got to read
the setter. You got to watch the setter and see where the ball is being set. If
you don’t pay attention to the set and you make your decision without paying
attention to the set, the ball could be set tight and you could have dropped
back when you should’ve been out there. Or they set further off and you should
drop in that situation. So you got to practice reading and making your decisions on
what you see the setter do. You know where the ball is passed. Is the setter running down the ball and are they making a really difficult
play to get set. It could be a situation where you want to drop
because if it’s a real chaotic play, it may not be likely that they’re
going to get a good set. But then also if you watch the setter
and it’s real crazy play then the setter could end up pushing the ball really
tight. So that could be a really big play to be up at the net ready to block
because if the pass is way off the net and a setter pushes a ball tight to the
net, it’s going to be really hard for the hitter to hit because they’re hitting a
ball that’s coming from far off the net. That’s a really weird angle to see
the ball and hit that ball and then also see the block and defense at the
same time. So that’s definitely a ball to be ready to be at the net. If the
ball is coming from far off the net you have more time to drop back. So for that situation, it’s even more important to be be ready
to drop back and really anticipate the ball and see that the balls not going tight and you get off the net and make the play. Or it is going
tight to the net, and the ball coming from off the net that goes
tight to the net is gonna be hard. For the hitter, if there’s a block up. So the most
important thing to do is make a decision. And you got to commit early. So you got
to commit early enough to get in position to make the play. And you don’t
want to get caught in between. So that’s like the biggest thing is, don’t get
caught in between. If you’re not good at reading the situation
and you’re just not sure then go ahead and guess a little bit and make sure to commit. Just make sure whatever it is that you decide to do,
make sure you decide early enough that you get in position to make the play. So
if you’re gonna block then make sure you get up there and you get in the right
position to block in time. You don’t want to be late getting there to block.You’re not gonna do anything. All you’re gonna do is if
you’re late getting there to block, you’re just gonna mess up your partner
playing defense because you’re not gonna be in position to block. Then they
don’t know where you are and your partner is not gonna know where to be on defense
because they’re not sure what there gonna have to cover. So the
biggest thing is, whatever you do, make sure you commit early enough to make the play. To make the wrong decision or a bad decision on whether to stay up a block
or drop back, that’s not nearly as bad a decision as going late or getting
getting caught in between. Deciding too late or waiting too
long. You know it’s all about timing. It’s all about good timing. That’s the first thing to do. Decide early enough see that you can get in
position to make the play and then worry later on about whether that was a good decision or not and just from your
experience and keep practicing and keep doing it over and over again, you will
get better at making these decisions. So you’ll read things better and
you’ll make a better decision on where you should be on defense and whether you
should stay up to block or whether you should be back. Your decisions will become
better as you get more experience. That’s just it, you need
to keep practicing it and keep doing it over and over again so you can you get good at
it. This is why most players don’t really want to work on this skill. They
may get frustrated with it and they really struggle because people get
caught in between and they don’t read very well.
They make bad decisions. They think, I should have been up there or I
should drop back. You start questioning whether what you did was
right. So the whole thing is you got to practice it in order to get
good at it. So you just gotta keep at
it. This is more of an art than anything. Okay so here are some
situations for dropping back on defense. Maybe the hitter never hits the ball
hard or they never hit they never hit the ball hard down into the court.
Maybe the setter isn’t setting the ball tight or they’re not even trying to set
the ball tight to the net. Maybe there is a situation where the pass is really bad
and the setter is running after the ball and they’re really likely not to
give them a good set. So you got to be ready you get off the net to play defense.
You might have a situation where the player is making a play towards the back
of the court towards endline and they get the ball up and then you know
they’re on the ground . You think, now they have to get up and
take an approach and hit and so you know they’re probably not going
to get up to the net to hit. So in that situation, you got to be ready to drop
off the net. There’s also situations where it’s
very likely that the hitter is going to try to hit a shot and you may notice
that maybe the hitter the whole time you’ve been playing, they never
swing or try to hit the ball really hard and
everything’s a shot. So in those situations, you got to be ready. It’s to
your advantage to anticipate a shot and be ready to drop
back and run down the shot and help your partner. So you
always want to be moving with the ball and not at the ball. Especially on
defense, if you can. So if you’re dropping back, you’re moving with it. It’s
easier to pass the ball like that. Whereas, if you started deep and then you
had to run in and come in and play the ball short. It’s typically easier to play
the ball when you’re moving back. It’s also easier to be moving back first
and then come short to make the play versus coming forward. Having
to stop and then having to go back, you won’t get it. It’s gonna go over your head and you won’t make the play if you do it
that way. If you’ve been struggling with blocking or defense or have a question
related to blocking or defense, please comment below with follow-up question. If
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1 thought on “Beach Volleyball Block or Drop? (HOW TO MAKE GREAT BLOCKING DECISIONS)

  1. Thanks for watching! What do you think of this strategy for blocking and defense? Please let me know in the comments below! 🙂

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