Does a Block Count as a Touch in Volleyball: Breaking Down the Game

by | Jun 15, 2023 | Volleyball Questions, Advice & Skills

Hello, fellow volleyball enthusiasts! You’ve landed here because, like me, you’ve grappled with the intriguing question: “Does a block count as a touch in volleyball?”

It’s a query that’s bounced around indoor volleyball courts, echoed across beach volleyball games, and even prompted heated debates among players.

As a passionate player who’s seen my fair share of games and blocks, I know firsthand how this question can impact your play strategy. So, is it time to redefine our understanding of a block? Does a block count as a touch or a hit, or does it exist in its own category within the rules of volleyball?

In this comprehensive exploration, we’ll leave no stone unturned. We’ll dive into the nuances of what constitutes a block in volleyball, decode the difference between a block and a hit, and unravel the fascinating complexities of this thrilling sport.

So, are you ready to elevate your volleyball knowledge and maybe even your game strategy? Stick with me as we dissect this intriguing question, with insights drawn from official rules, expert analysis, and the wisdom of experienced volleyball players.

By the end, we’ll all have a clear answer to whether a block truly counts as a touch in volleyball.

Let’s serve up some fast answers!

Does a Block Count as a Touch in Volleyball: Breaking Down the Game

Does a Block Count as a Touch in Volleyball?

Get this, folks! In volleyball, we’ve got this rule we call “the lift,” which is when a player makes contact with the ball and holds onto it just a wee bit too long. That, my friends, is a big no-no and can earn you a foul.

So, let’s break this down and see whether a block, another crucial element of volleyball, is considered a touch.

  • Picture this: you’re playing indoor volleyball. You’ve got this towering player who makes a block at the net. Guess what? This block isn’t considered a contact. That’s right! Your team still has three more hits left. It’s like getting a free move, and who doesn’t love a bonus?
  • But hold on a minute! If you’re kicking up sand on a beach volleyball court, the rules take a turn. Here, a block always counts as a touch. It’s like the volleyball officials are making it harder on beach volleyball players, right?
  • Here’s another fun fact: When you’re making that block, that contact with the ball doesn’t count as playing the ball. Yeah, you heard it right!
  • And it gets even more interesting: a block or touch of the ball at the net doesn’t count as one of your team’s three hits. That’s another freebie for you!
  • After a block, anyone, and I mean anyone, can make the first hit, even the player who just made the block. And this is regarded as the first of the three hits. Talk about turning defense into offense!

Now, there’s a little caveat here. This lift rule, it’s quite the subjective one. The referees make the call, and that could be a bit tricky because determining if a call is correct or not can be a bit of a grey area.

So, to sum up this rollercoaster of rules:

In indoor volleyball, a block doesn’t count as a touch. But touch in beach volleyball; it sure does (FIVB Rules). And even though a block or touch of the ball at the net doesn’t count as one of the team’s three hits, the first hit after a block can be made by any player. That, my friends, is the crazy, exciting world of volleyball rules for you!

Understanding the Basics of Volleyball

Volleyball is a dynamic sport, captivating millions worldwide with its blend of strategy, teamwork, and athletic prowess.

Before we delve into the central question at hand—does a block count as a touch—let’s get our footing by exploring the fundamental aspects of volleyball and its different variants: indoor volleyball and beach volleyball.

Indoor Volleyball vs. Beach Volleyball

When you think of volleyball, your mind might instantly leap to the image of six players on each side, energetically maneuvering around an indoor court. This version of the game is known as indoor volleyball, and it’s a sight to behold with its high-speed rallies, quick sets, and powerful spikes.

But, swap the hardwood floor with a sandy beach, reduce the teams to two players each, and you get the sun-soaked, fast-paced game of beach volleyball.

This variant is a summer favorite and is beloved for its accessibility—you just need a ball, a net, and a sandy stretch!

While both games share the same foundational principles, there are some rule variations to consider. These differences become especially pertinent when we talk about blocks and touches.

Decoding the Jargon: Block, Hit, Touch

Now that we’ve familiarized ourselves with the types of volleyball let’s clarify some key terms that we’ll frequently encounter throughout this article: block, hit, and touch.

  1. Block: When I started playing volleyball, the concept of a block quickly became my best friend. A block is a player’s attempt to stop the ball from coming over the net from the opponent’s side. Think of it as the first line of defense. In both indoor and beach volleyball, players can block the ball, but the rules surrounding what counts as a block can vary.
  2. Hit: Also referred to as an attack, a hit is when a player strikes the ball to send it over the net into the opponent’s court. It’s the volleyball equivalent of going on the offense. A well-executed hit can score points and shift the momentum of the game in your favor.
  3. Touch: A touch is any contact a player makes with the ball. This can occur through a block, a hit, or even a serve. Now, you might be thinking, “Isn’t a block or a hit also a touch?” Well, that’s where the rules get interesting, and our central question—does a block count as a touch—comes into play.

As we continue, we’ll unravel these complexities, shedding light on whether a block is considered a hit in volleyball or if it resides in a realm of its own within the game rules. So whether you’re a seasoned player or just getting into the volleyball scene, stick around as we set the ball up for an engaging exploration of volleyball rules.

Does a Block Count as a Touch in Volleyball: Breaking Down the Game

The Art of Blocking in Volleyball

Let’s dig a little deeper into one of the most fascinating, game-changing maneuvers in volleyball—the block.

If you’ve ever been on a volleyball court, you’d know that a well-executed block can be just as thrilling as a perfectly timed hit. It can completely reverse the momentum of a game, switching you from defense to offense in an instant.

What is a Block in Volleyball?

If you’re new to volleyball or just a spectator wondering about the technicalities, you might ask, “What does it mean to block in volleyball?”

A block in volleyball is like a well-aimed counterpunch in boxing. It’s a defensive play where a player, or sometimes even the entire front row of players, jumps near the net to stop or redirect an opponent’s attack hit.

Consider the moment when the opposing team’s attacker approaches, leaps into the air, arm pulled back, ready to send a powerful hit your way.

Instead of retreating or preparing for the hit, you and your teammates go up to block, creating a formidable wall at the net. Your hands and arms shoot up, stretching high and wide, ready to intercept the ball. If performed correctly, the block can send the ball rocketing back into the opponent’s court.

The Significance of a Block in a Volleyball Game

Blocking, undoubtedly, holds a significant place in a volleyball game. A successful block scores points disrupts the opponent’s strategies, and provides an opportunity for your team to set up an attack. But beyond this, it’s a psychological tool capable of shaking an opponent’s confidence in their attack.

I remember a game from my playing days when our team’s blockers were in top form. Each successful block sent a clear message to the opposing team: “Not in our court!” It created a palpable shift in the game’s dynamics, made us feel invincible, and made the opposing hitters hesitant and unsure.

Block Attempt Strategies: How Players Can Block Effectively

So, how can you block effectively in a game of volleyball? Here are a few strategies to consider:

  1. Anticipation and Timing: You need to anticipate the trajectory of the ball, understand the hitter’s approach, and time your jump accurately. An early jump might lead to a missed block, while a late jump might not provide the required height to stop the hit.
  2. Proper Form: Your hands should be wide open, fingers spread out, and palms facing the opponent’s court. Remember, the aim is to cover as much area as possible to prevent the ball from entering your court.
  3. Communication: Volleyball is a sport where communication is key. While preparing for a block, inform your teammates of your strategy—whether you’re planning to block line or angle. This ensures that the defense can position themselves appropriately for a potential “cover” if the block touch doesn’t go as planned.
  4. Practice: Like every other skill in volleyball, effective blocking comes with practice. Drills focusing on footwork, hand placement, and jump timing can significantly enhance your blocking skills.

Remember, a block in volleyball isn’t just about leaping and putting your hands up; it’s a complex blend of timing, anticipation, strategy, and skill. So, next time you step onto the court, remember the art of blocking and its impact on the volleyball game.

As we progress, we’ll explore whether this critical play counts as one of the three touches a team is allowed or if it’s considered a separate entity altogether. Stick around to find out!

Does a Block Count as a Hit in Volleyball?

Now that we’ve covered what a block is in volleyball, let’s tackle a frequently asked question that I remember pondering during my early days on the court—does a block count as a hit in volleyball? I mean, we are technically hitting the ball back, right?

What Counts as a Hit in Volleyball?

Before we answer this, it’s crucial to understand what we mean by a ‘hit’ in volleyball. A hit, also commonly referred to as an attack, is a play where a player strikes the ball to send it over the net into the opposing team’s court with the intention of scoring a point. It typically involves a three-step process—an approach, a jump, and then a strike on the ball.

However, the complexity of volleyball rules doesn’t end there. You may wonder if this definition varies across different forms of the game, such as indoor and beach volleyball. Let’s delve into that.

Differences Between a Hit in Indoor Volleyball and Beach Volleyball

While the basic premise of hitting the ball remains the same across both formats, there are subtle differences.

For instance, in indoor volleyball, the player’s hand or arm must cleanly hit the ball. In contrast, in beach volleyball, open-handed tips or dinks, where the ball is directed with the fingertips, are considered faults.

Why a Block Might Be Considered a Hit

Coming back to our original question—does a block count as a hit in volleyball? The answer is both yes and no, depending on how we look at it.

Yes, in the sense that a block involves contact with the ball and redirects it toward the opponent’s court, much like a hit. But also no, because according to the official rules of volleyball, a block is not counted as one of the three allowed hits within a team’s court.

Blocks hold a special place in the rule book. When you block an attack, the touch is not counted as one of your team’s three contacts.

This means that even after a successful block, your team still has the opportunity for three touches, creating an advantageous situation to organize a counter-attack.

So there you have it. Even though, as a shorter player, I’ve scored my fair share of points from blocks, making me feel like I’ve nailed a spectacular hit, according to the rule book, it’s technically not counted as a hit.

Understanding these nuanced rules and their tactical implications is a crucial aspect of mastering the game of volleyball. As we dive deeper into the sport, we’ll continue to unravel these fascinating rules and strategies, one post at a time!

Does a Block Count as a Touch in Volleyball?

Let’s dive deeper into the intricacies of volleyball and tackle another intriguing question I’ve often heard on the court – “Does a block count as a touch in volleyball?” This question puzzled me during my initial days of playing volleyball, and I believe many newbies face the same confusion. To clarify this, we need to take a closer look at the rules of the game and how they are applied.

Does a Block Count as a Touch?

According to the official rules of volleyball, a block does not count as one of the three touches allowed for a team, but it is considered as a team hit, meaning the team hit count restarts after a block. In essence, you can touch the ball after a block, and it will be considered as the first of the three allowed hits for your team.

This rule can have significant strategic implications. It offers a team the chance to attack the ball over the net with full force right after a successful block, turning defense into offense instantly. This is one of the many aspects of volleyball that make it such a dynamic and thrilling game.

Contextual Variations in Rule Application

Interestingly, the rule that a block does not count as one of the three hits can be applied slightly differently depending on the specific scenario in the game.

For instance, when the ball is hit over the net, and the blocker is able to soft block or deflect it and then immediately play it again for the first hit, it’s considered legal. This is commonly referred to as a “beach dig” and is a skillful maneuver requiring excellent timing and ball control.

The Definition of an Illegal Block

However, not all blocks are created equal. Some blocks are considered illegal and can result in a point for the opposing team. An illegal block is defined as a blocker making contact with the ball on the opponent’s side of the net outside the antenna.

Additionally, back-row players or players who have completed a serve are prohibited from blocking the ball. Understanding these subtle rules can prevent errors on the court and keep the game flowing smoothly.

So, in a nutshell, a block does count as a touch in the sense that it involves contact with the ball, but it doesn’t count toward the three-hit limit. This gives teams an extra opportunity to touch the ball and organize their attack strategy. Learning and mastering these nuances of volleyball blocking can significantly enhance your game.

Does a Block Count as a Touch in Volleyball: Breaking Down the Game

Impact of the Rule on Volleyball Strategy

As someone who’s played countless matches, trust me when I say that understanding the finer details of volleyball rules can profoundly shape your team’s strategy. The rule that a block counts as a touch, for instance, has far-reaching implications on how a team approaches its offensive and defensive strategies. Let’s dig into this a little deeper.

Influencing Team Hit Strategies

In both indoor and high-level beach volleyball, the blocking rules significantly affect the team hit strategies. Knowing whether a block counts as one of the three hits or not can influence how you plan your next moves.

Consider this scenario in indoor volleyball.

After a successful block, which is also the team’s first hit, your team still has two remaining touches to successfully launch an attack. It’s a golden opportunity for a well-planned and coordinated sequence. You could set up for a powerful spike or opt for a strategic placement, aiming to exploit the gaps in the opponent’s defense.

Meanwhile, the rules are slightly different when you hit the sand for a 2v2 beach volleyball match. In this version of the game, the block is regarded as the first contact, but the team still has three contacts left, not two. This rule offers an additional chance to attack, adding a layer of complexity to the tactical decisions.

The Role of Volleyball Blocking

Blocking serves a dual purpose in both indoor and beach volleyball. Not only is it a defensive maneuver designed to stop the opponent’s attack, but it’s also a pivotal first touch that can shift the momentum in your favor.

In indoor volleyball, a team may deploy multiple blocking contacts to stop a fierce attack. Here, blocking is a crucial first line of defense and sets the stage for counterattacks. Every block touch is essential to regain control of the ball and dictate the flow of the game.

In beach volleyball, blocking takes on an even greater role due to the fewer number of players on the court. A player attempting to block must not only aim to stop the attack but also strategically position the block so that their teammate can efficiently play the ball after a block. In other words, the blocker must act both as a defender and a setter.

In my playing days, I always viewed a block as more than just a way to stop the opponents’ attack. It was an opportunity—a chance to turn defense into offense, a chance to regain control, and most importantly, a chance to dictate the rhythm of the game.

Can You Block the Serve in Volleyball?: To Block or Not to Block

Serving a final point…

Understanding and applying the blocking rules in volleyball is an essential part of the game’s strategy. The next time you watch or play, pay close attention to how teams utilize their blocks. You’ll soon realize that it’s not just about stopping the ball—it’s about using the block to outsmart, outmaneuver, and ultimately outscore the opponents. 

Volleyball is filled with such fascinating rules and intricacies, each adding an extra layer of depth to this exhilarating sport. Remember, knowledge of these rules is as important as physical agility and skill, if not more. So, stay tuned as we continue to delve deeper into this wonderful sport in the upcoming posts, helping you become a well-rounded player and a true volleyball enthusiast!

Now that’s the beauty of volleyball!

If you found this information valuable, why not serve it up to your friends and fellow volleyball enthusiasts? You might just help someone score the winning point in their next game!

Don’t stop here. Explore more on our website,, to fuel your passion and elevate your game. We have plenty more articles waiting for you.

See you on the court!