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Junior Club Sand Volleyball Rules


The Starter Club has provided 10 basic rules to prepare junior volleyball players for sand volleyball games and tournaments. The Starter Club Coaches will officiate and instruct both teams during games and tournaments. Parents are encouraged to provide positive input and volunteer as assistant coaches, however only The Starter Club Coaches will officiate/instruct games. Please handle all violation issues in a respective manner and polite tone. Feel free to e-mail us with comments or suggestions.

Basic Set of Junior Club Volleyball Rules:

  1. Regular club matches consist of 3 games with rally scoring to 21 (straight to 21, no win by 2).
  2. Let serves are live and not a violation.
  3. When receiving a serve, players must bump the ball, or receive with hands together. Players may not take the serve with open hands, double contact, or lift.
  4. Players may not attack a serve - a violation that occurs when players within 10 feet of the net attempt to use any over-head strike on the first hit after the serve and the ball goes over.
  5. A "hard-driven ball" may be taken as a double contact without a violation.
  6. A "free ball" should be taken as a bump. If taken with the hands, it must be clean - i.e. no double contact. This contact can be judged similar to the "set" or second contact.
  7. When hand setting, a player must be facing the way the ball travels - i.e. a player may set a ball forward or backward, but may not set a ball over the shoulder to the side. A hand set with more than one rotation in any direction is a violation. If wind redirects the ball, this is not a violation.
  8. When hitting, players may not open hand dink, or "redirect" the ball with the fingers. The hand must be closed or a "roll shot" can be used.
  9. When any part of a player's body touches the net while the ball is in play it is a violation, however hair and loose clothing does not count. Players can go under the net, as long as they do not interfere with play on the other side.
  10. When blocking, if the block contacts the ball, it does not count as a contact. The team then has three more contacts to put the ball over the net. The blocking player may play the ball up after blocking, i.e. take both first and second contacts (same as indoor).

For the most recent official beach volleyball rules, click here: New Edition of Beach Volleyball Rules

Definitions of Common Violations


  • Double Hit is a violation that occurs when players use two parts of their body to pass or hit the ball. “Beach Digs” are legal on the first pass only after a hard-driven or over-head hits, not a serve. Technically, a clean (absolutely no spin) "beach dig" is legal after a bump-passes or roll shot--captains may replay or allow it

  • Open-Hand Receiving The Serve is a violation when the player's hands are not connected when receiving the ball. The ball should "pop" and the player's hands should clearly be together to avoid a fault. Even if the player's thumbs are touching, players can cause a double-hit

  • Attacking The Serve is a violation that occurs when players attempt to use any over-head strike on the first hit after the serve and the ball goes over. If players are more than 10 feet from the net, then players are NOT committing a fault. For those teams that receiving the serve in a "box formation" the two front players are not allowed to over-head strike the ball but may pass the ball over or on their own side. That is, everything underhand is legal

  • Throw is a violation that occurs when the player attempts to strike the ball over-head and continues to follow through the ball causing the ball to backspin. The ball should “pop” and typically have a forward rotation. A spike that appears to look like a basketball “dunk” is a throw. A roll shot will have a forward rotation and is legal. When players are spiking but it appears that they miss-hit the ball and there is an arch with backspin, then they are committing a throw

  • Lift or Carry is a violation that occurs when the player attempts to bump the ball underhand with the palm or open hand. A closed fist must be obvious to make the bump legal, even on a hard-driven ball

  • Tipping is a violation when the player attempts to strike the ball over the net with open fingertips. In order to avoid subjectively whether players are using a “cobra” or closed fingertip (which is legal when you a referee to make the call) ONLY knuckle shots are legal

  • Hand-Setting with more than one rotation in any direction is a violation however it is up to the captains to decide how tight to call the rotation on the ball. Due to high controversy, there is no hand-setting over the net in The Sand Club leagues, unless both captains agree to play it. Technically, if a player is square and there is no side or back spin, then the ball may be set over

  • Net Violations when any part of a player's body touches the net while the ball is in play. Violations occur even on the continuation of a hit or block, that is, if a blocker or hitter touches the net before the player's feet are in the sand, even if the ball is considered dead, players are charged a violation. Hair or a loose t-shirt is NOT a violation

  • Over-The-Net violations occur when players are reaching over the net and making contact with the ball. Even if a players is attempting to spike the ball on the 3rd hit, the attacker is not allowed to reach over the net. The blocker is not allowed to touch the ball before the attacker, however, the blocker may make contact over the net as long as the attacker touches the ball first or touch the net

  • Under-The-Net violations occur when players cross the plain under the net and interfere with the ability of another player to pass the ball. When players are contacted under the net but they are not making a play on the ball then there is no fault