Here are some ways to improve your pickleball volley by practicing your footwork, reaction time, accuracy, and grip by doing simple pickleball drills.
Are you also a pickleball enthusiast? Well, same here. One skill that helps a pickleball player ensure a win is the perfect art of volleys. Mastering volleys can be a tricky matter. However, all it needs is some practice, energy, and many easy tricks to become a volley master in pickleball.
Pickleball is popular, and people of all ages enjoy playing it. Moreover, it is a simple and social game with a slow pace. It covers less space than other games like badminton and volleyball etc. The game helps you balance, agility, reflexes, and hand-eye coordination while having fun. If you want to improve your pickleball volley, continue reading this blog till the end.
Ways to Improve Your Pickleball Volley
What Is A Volley In Pickleball?
Volleys are most certainly an important skill in a pickleball game. It is better to understand the nature of volleys to shoot the best volley. Moreover, there are different types of volleys; you will have to shoot different volleys in different situations. Before moving towards improving volleys, let’s learn about the types of volleys.
The most common type of volley is the punch volley. As its name indicates, in this volley, the player hits the ball when it is above the pickleball net in a quick punch-like motion. Therefore, this volley works well in putting pressure on the opponents.
If you want the ball to hit a specific place in the court, like the sidelines, you must roll your paddle over it to spin it. This type of volley is called roll volley, where the player hits the ball in a sweeping motion. Moreover, it is good in both singles and doubles.
Suppose the player is sending back-to-back shots, and you want to try a defensive volley; a drop volley is your option. It is also known as reset or block volley, a type of shot where the player slowly and softly redirects the ball over the net in a defensive act. Similarly, dink volley is when you shoot a soft shot over the net and strategically target the opponent’s kitchen area.
Now that we have enough understanding of the best pickleball volleys. Let me share some ways to improve pickleball volleys. So, you can become the best pickleball champion in the town.
Ways to Improve Your Pickleball Volley
1. Give Attention To Your Footwork
Your footwork should be your main focus while volleying in pickleball. The feet should be placed so that your body is balanced; you can easily move in every direction forward, backward, and on the sides. This is a baseline to hit a good volley. So, work on your footwork to control your body and speed during the game.
2. Keep Your Paddle Ready
During the game, you cannot miss any time to zone out. Your paddle should always be in a slightly open position. This allows you to always be ready to hit. Moreover, not all opponents are predictable; even a predictable opponent can leave you in shock with a shot. So, this position gives you the minimum time to volley back.
3. There Is Always Room For Adjustment
Even when you are at your ‘ready to hit’ position, you must still move slightly to adjust your paddle position to hit a volley. Therefore, never stay stuck at one point. Be ready to adjust yourself with the upcoming shots. Be ready to respond no matter how unpredictable the opponent’s volley shots are.
4. Be Unpredictable
As much as we love predictable shots from the opponents, you should never hit the same spot from the same direction all the time. Try to hit random spots that your opponents cannot predict. Moreover, hit the kitchen, then hit the sideline and change your position again to force your opponent to give your winning volley.
5. Keep A Low Position
If you want quick response and control over your body and paddle, your body should always be low. Put your weight on your toes and bend your knees; this will help you to react quickly and score a perfect volley. Moreover, this gives you more time to volley as your paddle will be underneath the ball for a relatively long time before the ball bounces in the court.
6. Paddle Direction
The paddle direction plays a key role in your ability to volley. An ideal paddle position should always give you room to move backhand, forehand, or anywhere around the court. Therefore, a neutral position is always a better option.
Suppose your body is a needle of the cock, the net should be at 12 o’clock from your body, and your paddle should be somewhere around 10 to 11 o’clock if you are using your right hand. So, you will have the quickest response this way.
7. Change Grip Pressure To Suit Your Distance
A perfect volley does not require constant grip and pressure; it should change and adapt to new situations. Moreover, use your index finger and thumb for the pickleball volley grip and the other fingers for pressure and stabilizing the paddle.
Additionally, the pressure on the pickleball ball should be according to your distance from the net. You should have a softer pickleball grip near the net and kitchen area, as the ball is not far from the other side. Similarly, if you are away from the net, you should have a harder grip and more pressure on the ball to cover more distance.
8. Low Volleys
Low volleys are the perfect options to get a winning shot from your opponent. When you volley low, it puts immense pressure on the other person. The placement of your volley is very important, so make sure you are using it to your advantage by placing it in a position where the opponent cannot hit it back.
9. Shoot A Drop Volley In Response To A Dink
If the opponent sends a low shot, you must return it softly. Your instinct will tell you otherwise, but this tactic is amazing for tricking another person. Moreover, a low shot already puts you in a bad position; you are at a low point. So, if you hit the ball, it will most likely go right into the net or way out of the line. Therefore, return a dink with a drop volley.
10. Learn From Others
You can learn a lot by watching professional-level players play with each other. You can even play pickleball with different people and observe their games. Try to learn their tactics and implement them in your game.
It all comes down to practice because, in theory, you can rote the rules and pickleball volley tips, but if you do not implement them, it will fail. Therefore, practice different techniques and tricks. Even the most gifted players need practice to sharpen their skills.
The Non-Volley Zone
There is a limit to the volleys and a twist to the aggressive volleys. The non-volley zone, or the kitchen, extends seven feet back from the net on each side. The kitchen area strictly prohibits players from volleying from there. So, try to hit the drop shots at your opponent to force them into the non-volley zone.
1. The Two-Bounce Rule
The non-volley area is not completely forbidden; players can enter it to hit the ball if it bounces in the non-volley zone. However, they will have to step back to the volley zone quickly.
2. Non-Volley Zone Violation
A non-volley zone violation happens when you volley in a non-volley zone, even if you touch a part of the line that separates volley and non-volley zones. Consequently, the opposing team gets the point automatically. This can put you in a grave situation and cost you your whole game. Therefore, practicing good footwork can prevent you from this violation.
Pickleball Volley Drills
There are some drills and exercises that can help you in improving your volleys. These help practice the techniques so that they come naturally in the game. Moreover, these drills can improve your speed, footwork, etc.
1. Cross-Court Volley
This drill involves two people hitting the volley shots at each other back and forth while altering between backhand and forehand sides. So, it helps in improving accuracy. The volleys should be hit at each other cross-court rather than in the center.
2. Drop And Pop Drill
This trick is the best for minimizing the reaction time and gaining control. One player stands at one side of the net and drops the ball from the paddle, and the other player has to pop it back over the net after catching it.
3. Wall Volley Drill
The most convenient drill for improving hand-eye coordination is this one. It does not require another partner or a net. Likewise, you only need to stand before and practice hitting volleys against a wall.
4. Shadow Volley Drill
This drill requires you to set up a mirror or a camera to record your volleys and then watch it. So, you can be your critic, find out where you are lacking, and work on it.
5. Pressure Drills
These kinds of pickleball volley drills for beginners can help you to work best under pressure. Make a goal or a target in your mind, like hitting four volleys in a row or hitting a certain tiny target with precision. Ultimately, you will be able to make records in a pickleball game.
People Also Ask
What Are The Three Most Common Mistakes To Avoid In Pickleball?
The three most common mistakes to avoid at every cost in pickleball games are;
- Let the ball go too low.
- I am not using a softer grip.
- Keeping your paddle down.
Is Pickleball An Olympic Sport?
Pickleball is gaining popularity rapidly but is still not an Olympic-level sport.
What Is A Half Volley In Pickleball?
A half volley is a groundstroke shot where the ball is hit with a paddle immediately after bounce without rising to its full height. The half volley is a defensive shot.
What Is Pickleball Backhand Volley?
The pickleball backhand volley is a specific shot used in pickleball. The backhand volley is performed when a player hits the ball before it bounces, using the backhand side of their paddle (the side opposite to their palm). This shot is typically used when the ball is on the player’s non-dominant side.
To summarize, mastering volleys can make you the best pickleball player. Perfecting the volleys requires practice, great footwork, and good pickleball paddle and wrist placement. Moreover, a handful of drills can help you get spontaneous in your tricks.
Other Related Posts:
- The Rules Of Pickleball
- Top Pickleball Shoes
- Standard Pickleball Court Dimensions
- Tennis Vs Pickleball
- Best Pickleball Bags
I, Jeena Noven, am a renowned pickleball expert and author with over 10 years of experience playing and coaching the sport. My passion and extensive knowledge of pickleball has made me a leading authority in the game, particularly in the field of footwear. I have written countless articles for https://pickleballcard.com/, a website dedicated to pickleball, sharing my insights and expertise on the best shoes for the sport. Through personal testing and reviewing countless different brands and styles, I have developed a deep understanding of the technical aspects of shoe design that make them suitable for the demands of pickleball. In my articles, I provide valuable information for both beginner and advanced players, covering everything from the basics of shoe fit and support, to advanced tips for maximizing performance on the court. As a dedicated pickleball player and expert in footwear, I am a valuable resource for players of all levels. My articles are not only informative but also engaging, making them a must-read for anyone looking to improve their pickleball game. I am constantly researching new products and trends in the industry and my readers can always count on me to provide the most up-to-date and accurate information on the best pickleball shoes available.