The final authority for all rules interpretations and officiating issues is the Officials Chair.
Please direct any questions or issues to:
FALSE If a coach is shadowing (providing instruction) to a junior official, they are permitted to whistle violations.
The coach should not have a whistle!!!
FALSE 1. Only the R2 may whistle net violations.
FALSE 2. A decision cannot be changed if 15 seconds have elapsed
FALSE 3. It is permitted to straddle the centerline with one foot complete across the centerline.
FALSE 4. Touching the top of the net is always a fault.
FALSE 5. As a coach I have the right to question the official’s decision.
FALSE 6. The visual scoreboard can be used as grounds for a protest.
Including rights and responsibilities of head coaches
1. Can a coach stand and approach the court???
220.127.116.11 may, as well as other team members, give instructions to the players on the court. The coach may give these instructions while standing or walking within the free zone in front of his/her team’s bench from the extension of the attack line up to the warm-up area, without disturbing or delaying the match
pg 123 4. Coaches’ Location:
a. All coaches must remain 1.75 meters (5’10″) from the court while the ball is in play. During dead-ball periods, coaches may briefly approach the court to give instructions to players on the court but must step away from the
court when the first referee prepares to beckon for service. If a coach fails to adhere to this rule after being reminded to do so, a delay sanction may be assessed.
NOTE: When the distance between the sideline and the team bench/bench area is fewer than 2 meters, the coach must remain in the free zone nearer to the team bench/bench area while the ball is in play. Coaches may not enter the substitution zone.
b. The coach or one assistant coach may give instructions to a player in the warm-up area but may not remain there for any extended length of time.
Please note that any coach should not be standing in the warmup area for extended periods of time.
2. What can the head coach request from the officials?
18.104.22.168 requests time-outs and substitutions;
USAV 5.2.3: During the match the coach is authorized to speak to the referees to verify the positions of the teams.
3. Can the head coach file a protest?
NO!!! Only the captain. For 14U competition, the head coach also acts as the team captain.
5.1.2 DURING THE MATCH and while on the court, the team captain is the game captain. When the team captain is not on the court, the coach or the team captain must assign another player on the court, but not the Libero, to assume the role of game captain. This game captain maintains his/her responsibilities until he/she is substituted, or the team captain returns to play, or the set ends.
When the ball is out of play, only the game captain is authorized to speak to the referees:
USAV 22.214.171.124: If an explanation of an application or interpretation of a rule is not satisfactory to the game captain, he/she must immediately indicate his/her disagreement and file a protest prior to the authorization of the next
service. If the disagreement with the referee’s explanation involves the last point of the set, the official protest must be recorded within the first 60 seconds of the timed interval between sets…
If the protest is incorrectly requested, the matter cannot be addressed and no further recourse is available.
4. Can the head coach address the scorekeeper concerning scorekeeping issues.
NO!!! All issues must be addressed to the R1 or R2
As junior coaches we often forget that and address the scorekeeper directly.
We should make every effort to refrain from this.
Additionally, we should instruct our scorekeepers to politely redirect any questions to the R2.
1. How many assistant coaches are permitted on a team?
A maximum of 5 assuming no other staff members.
USAV 4.1.1:b. A team may consist of a maximum of 15 players and five coaches/staff personnel.
2. Can asst. coaches stand all the time?
NO!!! and only 1 asst may stand up at a given time!!!
DCR 5.3.1 The assistant coach sits on the team bench, but has no right to intervene in the match.
USAV 5.3.1: One assistant coach at a time may leave the bench to give instructions to the players on the court. During play, this assistant coach may give these instructions while standing or walking within the free zone in front of his/her team’s bench from the extension of the attack line up to the warm-up area, and no closer to the court than 1.75 m (5’10″) from the sideline and its extension, without disturbing or delaying the match. The extension of the attack line is drawn to a distance of 1.75 (5’10″) from the sideline.
3. Can the asst. coaches talk to the officials?
DCR 5.3.1 The assistant coach sits on the team bench, but has no right to intervene in the match.
4. Can an asst. coach replace the head coach.
YES – Under the following circumstances
DCR 5.3.2 Should the coach have to leave his/her team for any reason including sanction, the assistant coach may, at the request of the game captain, and with the authorization of the first referee, assume the coach’s
functions for the duration of the absence.
For juniors – must be IMPACT certified.
1. You may not straddle the centerline. If either foot is on the opponent’s court some part of that foot must be on or above the centerline.
2. Contact with the top band of net is a violation only if the player is in the act of playing the ball and has a legitimate play on the ball.
For more information and clarification
Please refer to the
WeR1 – HOA Rules Clinic for Coaches (Power Point) Zipped
New Net Rule Example Video AND
on the OFFFICIATING Resources page.
DCR pages 38-39
11.2 PENETRATION UNDER THE NET
126.96.36.199 To touch the opponent’s court with a foot (feet) is permitted, provided that some part of the penetrating foot (feet) remains either in contact with or directly above the center line.
11.4 PLAYERS’ FAULTS AT THE NET
11.4.3 A player’s foot (feet) penetrates completely into the opponent’s court.
11.4.4 A player interferes with the opponent’s play by (amongst others):
- touching the top band of the net or the top 80 cm (2′ 7.49″) of the antenna during his/her action of playing the ball, or
- taking support from the net simultaneously with playing the ball, or
- creating an advantage over the opponent, or
- making actions which hinder an opponent’s legitimate attempt to play the ball.
In order to be playing the ball, the ball must be there
Ex. A right side block may touch the top band of the net and may not be at fault if the ball is set to the left side.
For junior competition, when one team has exclusive use of the court, the other team must either be at its team bench or out of the playing area. Warming up with balls at the team bench or in the spectator walkways is not permitted.
For a complete explanation including liability statements from USAV please
The spirit of this DCR is to provide a safe obstacle free warm-up for the team having exclusive control of the court.
Points of emphasis
1. Standing at the sideline is NOT permitted. It is not “out of the playing area”.
DCR 1. PLAYING AREA
The playing area includes the playing court and the free zone.
It shall be rectangular and symmetrical.
USAV 1.1a: The free zone may be a minimum of 2 m (6’6 3/4″).
It is not required that the free zone be symmetrical.
SO!!! The sideline is the starting boundary of the free zone.
If a team is standing at the sideline they are not out of the playing area.
Please note that the DCR 7.2.2b says at its team bench that means the team must be directly in front of the bench with minimal space between the bench and the team.
For gyms with confined spaces please be responsible and have your team move out of the playing area as much as possible.
COACHES as Responsible Adults are expected to enforce and to comply with this regulation.
FAILURE TO COMPLY will be treated as a Refusal to Play and should be sanctioned under DCR 6.4.1.
Team will forfeit all sets of the match 0-25.
An open court is defined as a court which has no more matches scheduled for the day!!!
From Margie Mara (Senior Director USAV)
We wanted you to be aware of the importance of following the new warm up procedure at junior events (Rule USAV 7.2.2 b.). Since this rule was put into place for safety reason, it is NOT an option to waive this rule. The memo below was sent to the RVA leadership earlier today by Kevin Wendelboe, Chair of the RVA Insurance Committee.
From Kevin Wendelboe, Chair of the RVA Insurance Committee
I have been asked to address the Regions in regard to the new rule in the USAV 2009-2011 DCR about Junior teams warm ups. The new rule prohibits the team off the court from using balls both in the playing area and spectator areas. USA Volleyball has received some feedback that there is confusion on the rule both from officials and regions concerning the enforcement and reasons for the rule. I hope I can clear it up a little bit.
The reason for the rule is strictly for safety and liability reasons. Mike Price of ESIX provided me with the following that should clearly state why we as Regions need to encourage our officials and tournament administers to enforce this rule:
“In regard to the exclusive use of court USAV enacted this rule to protect the spectators as a result of an increase in the number of incidents directly related to errant volleyballs entering the spectator areas during warm up. Not only is there a danger posed to the general public (who have not signed a waiver of release) there is a heightened exposure from a spectator related claim as the event is not adhering to the rules required for a sanctioned event. There is also an increase in personal exposure to the event director if he is aware of this and does not take corrective measures as this could be interpreted as gross negligence which is NOT covered under the USAV policy.”
As to enforcement, the officials clearly have authority to control the actions and behavior of the participating teams when they are in the playing area during warm-ups. All other teams and individuals using balls in the spectator areas would need to be monitored and enforced by the Tournament Director/Administration.
It is vital that Regions communicate the importance of enforcing this rule to your officials and tournament directors for the safety of all our participants as well as the due diligence of our risk management program.
From Margie Mara (Senior Director USAV)
There has been quite a reaction to the memo concerning the exclusive use of the court during warm-up. In a nut shell, the problem is that at junior events we often have too many people in too small a space trying to warm-up with balls. Many times the spectator seating is at the edge of the sport court leaving no buffer between the teams and the spectators. Often there is no area (open court or designated warm-up area) where the players may ball handle except the court where they will play their next match. Rule 7.2.2.b. is an attempt to lessen the risk of injury to both players and spectators and to cut down on the number of errant balls that end up interfering with play on adjacent courts.
In addition, we must find better ways to control the balls from the team hitting at the net. Common sense would suggest that both teams hit toward a divider net, rather than toward another court. Common sense would also suggest that ball shaggers be stationed around the court toward which the hits are being directed. Common sense would suggest that rather than a hitter shagging her own ball, that after hitting she would run to get into position to shag the ball of the next hitter.
Steve Thorpe, the indoor rules interpreter, offers his perspective below. As he reminds us, the officials can only control what the teams in their control are doing.
This puts the responsibility for the non-playing teams on the tournament host.
Let’s do the best we can to keep balls and players out of spectator areas. If there are open courts, players could ball handle there since these are not spectator areas. If you are fortunate enough to have additional space at your venue that can be designated as a warm-up area, then do so. Rope off the area that could be used for warm-up with balls and post signs that no spectators are allowed or such – “designated warm-up area”, etc.
The Rules Testing Commission and the Officials Commission will be meeting in the next week. You can be sure warm-up procedures will be discussed. In addition Mike Chandler, Events Director, will also be discussing this topic with the Boys and Girls Competition Commissions. The Joint Admin Council has already discussed it. Thanks for all the good suggestions as we work toward a solution that meets our needs.
More will be posted as available.
Please contact HOA Referee Chair with any questions.
NO: For all Gold competition within the HOA Region, National Qualifier and National Championship competition the service must be completed in the service zone.
YES: For all Silver and Bronze competition within the HOA Region.
HOA is allowing 12 and under players to serve from inside the end line by as much as 2 meters (6 feet 6 inches).
This allow servers the opportunity to have more successful serves.
A line must be drawn/taped 2 meters from the endline to indicate the service fault line
This is no longer optional.
There is no option on switching sides in USAV.
Switch at 13 in a 25 pt set.
If the set is played with less than 25 pts,
switch when half the points (+1 for odd numbers) have been scored.
Set has 19 pts — Switch after one team has scored 10 pts
Scoreboard started at 6-6 switch at 16
HOA has a Fan Behavior Policy which will be strictly enforced.
For more details Click Here
Any disruptive fan behavior incidents must be reported to the HOA office,
by the Tournament Director, in writing, within 48 hours.
During a match if the officials determine that a team has (a) disruptive fan(s).
Communicate to the captain or coach that there is disruptive fan behavior which needs to cease immediately.
The official will direct the captain/coach to inform their fan(s) that this behavior needs to cease immediately.
This will be considered the team’s first official warning and is sanctioned as a team delay.
If a team delay has already been issued then this team delay will be a team delay penalty (TYC).
Strongly encourage the captain/coach to have their disruptive fan(s) leave the gym to avoid further incident.
This is sanctioned as a team delay penalty (TYC) since the 1st incident resulted in a team delay.
Play is suspended immediately!
The offending team will forfeit this set keeping all points won.
Any remaining sets will be forfeit with the offending team scoring no points.
All deciding set are played to 15 starting at 0-0.
All one set playoffs (tie-breakers) should be played to at least the same number of points in pool play non-deciding sets.
See details for sets playing less than 25 points, Example and Scoresheet instructions.
If a set is scheduled to play less than 25 points the set must start with sufficient points to conclude the set at 25.
Format: Pool Play 21 point sets. Elimination play 25 point sets.
Score starts at 4-4.
Slash the first four (4) points in the running score column for both teams.
The scoresheet is now ready.
One Set Playoffs:
Tournament Director’s Option
21 point set (start at 4-4), switch sides at 15 or
25 point set (start at 0-0) switch sides at 13.
HOA recommends that one set playoffs be played to the same number of points as elimination play non-deciding sets.
1. For all HOA region play the HOA Modification overrides any other rules.
2. The USAV modification, if any, overides the DCR (for all regions)
In the USA Volleyball Domestic Competition Regulations (DCR):
A rule is published, which is essentially the FIVB (international) rule.
If USAV modified the rule it will be written immediately following the DCR rule. It is placed in a box and starts USAV…
3. The Domestic Competition Regulation will be the applicable rule.
For Heart of America Region play only:
Players may change uniform number between matches of a tournament and must play all games of any given match with the same number.
Exceptions will be made for uniforms soiled with blood.
Nationally sanctioned events require that a player obtain approval from the Championship Committee prior to change uniform number.
See full answer for an example.
Player A wears #22 and plays as a normal player in game 1 of the first match. If player A is to play Libero in game 2, player A must have a contrasting color jersey with #22.
After the first match player A may then switch to any legal number for the next match.
This is completely the R1′s responsibility not the R2.
If there is a deciding game (3 or 5) then the R2 will handle the coin toss.
The signal is the loss of rally (sideout) signal.
If you see anyone signaling with their finger (point) please, in a very nice way, let them know it is sideout.
The rule is clear – Only flat band rings are permitted
We do not tape over anything. We take it off.
Please tell everyone.
On every service attempt, a player can drop the ball after the toss one time and will get a reserve
See example in (full answer).
Example: A player goes to serve. The player tosses the ball and drops it. The player gets a reserve from the R1. Now the players serves an ace. The same player gets again to serve and again drops the first toss. The player gets again a reserve from the R1.
The R2 does not echo the service beckon;
The R2 does not echo the signal if the ball is served into the net;