What is a Volley in Pickleball? Basic to Advance Level Guide

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After involving ourselves in different games and sports, we start developing interests in learning the key shots and their techniques to win the game. Pickleball volley shot is one of the best but tough shots. Players feel hesitant to apply this shot during their ongoing game and fear losing the game.

The players who played this shot often faced failures owing to different mistakes at their end. These mistakes are paddle usage, foot movement and misusage of variations in your paddle. Indeed, the volley is not an easy shot but a player who master this shot, believe me, can grab points.

In this article, you will find details about the mistakes that a player makes while playing volley shot. A guide on how you can overcome your mistakes by learning tremendous techniques about volley shot.

Volley Definition

In pickleball, volley is a shot that can be played at any time or stage during the game after service.

According to rules, we have to bounce the ball into the opponent’s court in the first serve, whereas, in volley shot, we maintain a chain of strokes with our opponents without bouncing a ball (onto the ground at both ends).

Following guidelines will help you to comprehend the volley shot and upgrade your professional level in the game:

Fundamentals of Pickleball Volley Shot

A Volley shot or volleying means to hit the ball a long way off from the air without letting it bounce first.

We can play a volley shot at the non-volley zone/kitchen line, or we are close to the net.

The fundamentals that every player should know are:

  • Generally, it’s known as a backhand shot, but it can be played by forehand.
  • To give the pickleball ball more loft, the paddle face should slightly open while hitting this shot.
  • Hit the volley shot away from the opponent so he can’t reach out easily.
  • Don’t hit the ball hard, it will return to the net in the kitchen.
  • There should be no backswings, the face of the paddle must be vertical while striking the ball over the net.

Tips to Hit a Perfect Volley Shot in Pickleball

First thing first, how to volley in pickleball?

There are some strategies to follow while hitting the volley shot. You should learn it to perform this shot well. Practice and learning will lead you to make an accurate shot.

1. Position of Paddle Tip

The tip of the paddle has significant importance. The paddle’s pointing should be upward, and it should be raised near your wrist to create a “V” shaped angle between your wrist and the paddle.

2. Where to Contact Ball

You should position your paddle in front to create solid contact with the ball from the front of your body.

Here, players used forehand and backhand shots. We prefer our viewers to play backhand volley as it is easier because of shoulder movement across the body.

Moreover, in forehand stroke, the elbow becomes close to the body and lessens hitting power and control.

3. Pressure to Grip Paddle

For playing volley, awareness for holding the paddle with a slight tight and normal grip makes the shot perfect.

Keep in mind, that the paddle should be gripped with fingers instead of the hand’s palm.

For popping the ball in the volley, the paddle should hold firmly, whereas, for deaden response, the grip will be soft and the paddle itself should absorb speed /pressure (of opponent power hit).  Through good practice we can achieve certain variations in grip.

What is the Right Moment to Hit a Volley in Pickleball?

When a player knows to hit the right shot at the right time and spot, he is so close to winning. It’s important to comprehend at what time you should drive a volley shot.

Benefits of Well Executed Volley Shot at the Right Time

By hitting a volley shot during the play, you will be able to eradicate bad bounces from it. For playing offensive, volley shot is probably the best shot to strive.

Your opponent team will be time-restricted because of volleying.

The Conventional Mistakes Players Make while Volleying

Volley is a tricky shot out of all shots in a pickleball. To master a volley shot, learning the missteps to avoid is mandatory.

1. Hitting the Ball Hard that Comes Towards You Low

While hitting the volley shot, it’s a common pickleball mistake and it may drive the ball into the net. You may hit it too long and maybe it goes to your competitor’s strike zone.

This mistake will cause failure.

2. Letting Ball too Near to Your Body

When you allow the ball to get enough close to your body, it will disturb your angle and the opponent will get more time to respond/react.

Pickleball ball too close to body

3. Step Back Movement

It is a common mistake at the player’s end while playing volley shot.

When we start making a chain of volley shots with our opponent we start moving back gradually. This movement gives a good room to the opponent in our court for the attack; besides, our opponent avails handsome time to stand firmly in his court to hit the target accurately.

Step Back Movement

Types of Pickleball Volley

After learning the basics and tips to drive a volley shot, the learner should go through the types of the volley.

1. Drop Volley / Block Volley

An aggressive approach in response to attacking the net is a drop or block volley. With the help of a drop or block volley, you can confuse your player for making random errors.

It is a defensive approach in which the player should have a soft grip. It is effective when your opponent tries to reconstitute the points by driving softballs over the net.

For striking this shot, paddle face is neither close nor open.

2. Dink Volley / Push Volley

Dink volley is the most common kind of volley in which we have enough time to react so we can hit this shot with a slightly opened or closed face of paddle towards a competitor.

While pushing up, retain the slightly open face of the paddle. When pushing down, maintain a closed face of the paddle.

3. Catch Volley

The knotty shot among all volley shots needs to be driven in response to the fastest shot from an opponent.

In this situation, the player has to apply a backspin that causes the ball to slow down and decrease the sting.

4. Roll Volley

One of the most offensive shots of pickleball that needs to add topspin to your ball.

Some players think that it requires more than enough power to strike this shot but, it does not every player can do it in little practice and learning.

The swinging path in this shot is from low to high, and the paddles should be open-faced.

5. Punch Volley

In punch volley, the player should react quickly but not swing the paddle. This volley is driven by the paddle face, just as acting like a “High five”.

The player should hit the volley shot with a firm wrist and calm body.

6. Backhand Volley

Backhand Volley Technique

Backhand volley plays through reverse hand grip. It includes three shots i.e., dink volley, edge/swing volley and power volley.

The palm of the hand covers the grip.  Position of the arm (from shoulder to arm) will remain the same in dink and edge/swing volley. The wrist position will be changed for them. Whereas, arm movement will change while playing power volley.

Backhand Volley Technique

Final Thoughts on Pickleball Volley Shot

In pickleball, playing a volley shot is an upheaval task. A player should avoid mistakes, which provide a chance for your opponent to clinch points. To overcome such failures, techniques like the role of contact with the ball, exact position of paddle and grip pressure will help you to mount pressure on your opponent.

Well executed volley shot help you in scoring plenty of points, likewise, the wrong volley shot will impact your score largely. Don’t try to hit hard to make it the best it will destroy your play.

The player should make the volley shot while his opponent is at his weakest point. This will be the right time to conduct it. Learning and practice continue from beginners to advanced level, so grasp the techniques and follow rules to become a professional player.  Through continuous practice you can get expertise to play this shot and it will give you fruitful results.

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