Volleyball positions

Volleyball positions have various designations, but how exactly does that work? In this article, we delve into the different “volleyball positions,” their unique names, and the specific roles you undertake in each position

The term positions

Firstly, it’s crucial to understand that the term “positions” in volleyball can signify two distinct aspects. When someone discusses “positions”, they might be referring to the physical location you occupy on the court. The volleyball court is segmented into 6 zones, numbered from 1 through 6. Each player occupies one of these “positions in volleyball court.” However, “position” can also imply the specific role you fulfill as a player. So, what “volleyball position” do you play? Setter, outsidehitter, libero?

Volleyball Positions for Players

In addition to having designations for spots on the court, players are assigned specific positions for volleyball. These volleyball positions have distinct names, akin to the titles for goalkeepers, defenders, midfielders, and forwards in soccer.


As the title suggests, this player governs the game’s flow. The setter, a crucial position in volleyball typically engages the second ball in an offensive strategy. This maneuver can be executed through a set-up, predominantly performed overhand. The setter has the discretion to direct a set-up towards any of his attackers, be it the middle attacker, outside hitter (wing spiker), or the opposite player.

Read more about the setter or watch setter drills

Outside hitter/Wingspiker

The outside hitte or wing spiker, primarily undertakes passing and attacking. This role, pivotal among positions volleyball, frequently engages the first and/or third ball in an offensive strategy. In most rotations at the net, the passer/hitter assumes the left front volleyball position.

Read more about the outside hitter or watch outside hidder drills

Middle blocker

Consistently engaging at the net’s center, the middle blocker often receives the third ball, justifying the designation. This volleyball position demands proficient blocking, earning the titles of middle blocker or main blocker. It’s common for a middle attacker to be substituted for a libero in the backcourt.

Read more about the middle blocker or watch middle blocker drills


Identifiable by a distinct jersey, the libero is restricted to the back three volleyball positions on court. Primarily tasked with passing and defense, liberos are substitutes for players with lesser defensive prowess. They’re frequent replacements for the middle attacker post-serve.

Read more about the libero or watch libero drills


Known as the team’s “cleaner” and scoring juggernaut, the opposite player is central to numerous attacks. This position in volleyball is typically held by a robust attacker with lesser defensive inclinations. The term ‘Opposite’ reflects their court position, always diagonal to the setter.

By understanding these volleyball court positions, players can optimize their strategic play, enhancing both individual and team performance. Whether you’re a novice or a seasoned professional, grasping the intricacies of positions of volleyball is key to mastering the game.

Positions 1-6

In volleyball, positions 1 through 6 are used to designate player rotation and placement on the court. These positions are essential for team organization and adherence to rotation rules. The court is divided into six zones, numbered 1 to 6, starting at the bottom right-hand corner and moving clockwise.

Positions volleyball

Position Layout:

  1. Right Back (Position 1):
    • This position is in the right back corner of the court.
    • The player in position 1 is often responsible for serving or back-row defense.
  2. Right Front (Position 2):
    • Located on the right side of the net.
    • This is typically where a setter or an attacker positions themselves, ready to set or spike.
  3. Middle Front (Position 3):
    • Directly at the net in the middle.
    • Usually occupied by a middle blocker, focusing on blocking and quick middle attacks.
  4. Left Front (Position 4):
    • On the left side of the net.
    • Often the position for the team’s primary attacker or outside hitter, responsible for a variety of attacks.
  5. Left Back (Position 5):
    • In the left back corner of the court.
    • This player often takes on a significant role in serve-receive and defense.
  6. Middle Back (Position 6):
    • At the back middle of the court.
    • The player here typically focuses on defense, particularly digging, and is often a key player in serve-receive formations.

Rotation and Movement:

Understanding these positions and rotations is crucial for effective team strategy and ensuring that all aspects of the game, such as serving, attacking, blocking, and defending, are covered by the appropriate players.