Rules – Volleyball

Volleyball Rules– 6 on 6


  • Volleyball is a team sport played by two teams on a playing court divided by a net.  The objective is for each team to send the ball over the net attempting to ground it on the opponent’s court, and to prevent the ball from being grounded on its own court.

Game Length

  • Games are 55 minutes in length with a 5 minute stop for halftime.
  • Games start and end according to your online CSSC schedule.
  • If games start late, games must finish at the scheduled time

Players on Court and Defaults

  • Teams are comprised of 6 players on the court, with atleast 2 being male and 2 being female
  • A team can play with a minimum of 5 players.
  • Captains may agree to waive the rules regarding minimum players before the game starts.
  • A default for the match (all three sets) will occur if any team cannot field a squad 15 minutes after the official start time (unless otherwise agreed by both captains).

Game Set-Up

  • Volleyball nets will be set up by the CSSC Event Coordinator or facility staff upon arrival to your game.
  • To determine who serves first, teams can either choose to play a rally game (minimum 3 crosses over the net), coin toss or rock-paper- scissors.
  • Teams are responsible for keeping score and time.  When an CSSC Event Coordinator is on-site and will offer to keep score for the game.
  • If time runs out in the middle of a set, whichever team is winning at that moment is considered the winner.  However, a team must win at least 5 points in a set in order for it to count as a win/loss. If neither teams gets at least 5 points, the set is deemed a tie.

General Game Rules

  • Matches are comprised of three sets which equals one match.
  • A player may play the ball off any part of his body, including feet.
  • A player may not make two consecutive hits of the ball, except where the player has contacted the ball on a block, then the player may hit the ball a second time.
  • Players are to call balls ‘in’ or ‘out’ of bounds.  If the ball touches any part of a court line, it is ‘in’.  The ball must completely pass the line to be ‘out’.  If there is a dispute, resume play by re-serving the ball with no point awarded.  If a disagreement escalates, any disputes should be discussed amongst the two team captains only.
  • A ball that hits the wall or ceiling is out of bounds.
  • If a match concludes early, the teams can continue to play, but the score of the fourth game will not be recorded.


  • The first team to score 25 points is awarded the set.
    • During regular season, if a game score is tied 24-24, the next point wins (first team to 25 points).
    • During playoffs the first team to score 25 points by a two-point margin wins (with a hard cap of 27 points).
    • The game is officially won by the first team to win 2 sets. If no team has won 2 sets when the time runs out:
      1) if the game in progress has at least 5 points in the set for either team, the team with the most points of that set gets a point
      2) if either team has more points they win
      3) if the teams have the same amount of points they tie

Player Rotation and Positioning

  • Each of the 6 players must rotate positions after winning back the serve.
  • How to rotate: after serving from position one, players rotate to position six (middle back), then position five (left back), position four (left front), position three (middle front) and position two (right front) before returning to serve.
  • If your team has more than 6 players, the previous server exits the court and the new player takes position six (middle back).
  • A team must be in correct rotation order before the serve is put into play. Once the ball is served, players can move positions, however backcourt players cannot move to the net to block or spike. Only the three players at the net positions (4,3,2) can jump and spike or block near the net. The backcourt players (5,6,1) can only make attacking actions (jumping hit/spike) from behind the attack line.


  • Players are to call their own fouls and violations. If an obvious foul is missed, a player on the opposing team may politely point this out, assuming their opponent either does not know the rule or missed their own foul. Generally, teams should not call fouls against their opponents.
  • Obvious fouls include – carries, double hits (allowed on serves), touching the net, going under the net and contacting another player.
  • A player is allowed to touch the net as long as it does not interfere with the play. Examples to clarify net rules:
  • If either team takes more than 30 seconds to serve, the serving team loses position and the opposing team gets a point. This is generally to discourage intentionally stalling during a close game.

 (provided it does not interfere with the play):

  • In the act of playing the ball (hitting, blocking, bumping, setting, etc.), players may make contact with the mesh or bottom band.
  • An offensive player that fakes a hit/spike may contact the top band.
  • Players are allowed to touch the posts, ropes or any other object outside the antennae or court lines.
  • If the ball is driven into the net causing the net to touch an opponent, no fault is committed.

Illegal (always results in interference with the play):

  • Touching the top band of the net in the act of playing the ball (hitting, blocking, setting, etc.).
  • Pulling the net down to lower it for a teammate or themselves.
  • Taking support from the net simultaneously while playing the ball.
  • Purposely touching the net to change the direction of a ball.
  • Creating an advantage over the opponent or making actions which hinder an opponent’s legitimate attempt to play the ball.
  • A player is permitted to pass his hand above the plane of the net in the following scenarios:
    • While blocking an attack.
    • If a player is spiking the ball, their hand can cross the net as long as contact is initiated on their own side.
    • An infraction has occurred if a player interferes with their opponents attack (e.g. if a setter is trying to set their player, the opponent can’t reach over the net and block that set).
    • Players are not permitted to penetrate fully into the opponent’s space under the net. Player’s feet must remain in contact with the centre line and any part of the body above the feet. Players need to be as cautious as possible when crossing under the plane of the net, so as to avoid injury to themselves or their opponents.


  • A server may serve the ball from anywhere behind the baseline.
  • Only one toss or release of the ball is allowed per serve.
  • Players can open-hand volley a serve.
  • A player may NOT block or spike a serve.
  • Net serves are allowed. Meaning, if a serve hits the net but the motion of the ball carries it over, it is a live ball.
  • A double hit off of the serve is allowed (e.g. the serve hits the defender’s arms and then chest).
  • Servers must rotate after five consecutive points. The same team continues to serve as long as his team successfully wins the point.