Side Out Rules
Volleynation is Committed to the Integrity and Skill Sets Inherent in Side
Here are some of our reasons for using Side-Out Rules:
1. It is difficult to keep score in matches with 20+ points with appointed refrees.
2. We feel allowing the constant doubling while setting passable balls leads to
poor sets not being called. Let serves in doubles introduces more random
chance than skills.
3. We feel side-out scoring fosters more challenging matches, you can come
back from a 10 point deficit to win a match to 15.
4. International scoring was designed to keep time constraints on
matches/tournaments. We feel a well run tournament can still finish on time
and with much more exciting and true results.
5. We don't plan being on network TV in the near future so for now we feel it is
a much more competitive system. With 28 tournaments during the outdoor
season and 10+ indoor quads events it gives players in this region plenty of
chance to familiarize themselves with the side-out format.
The official full set of rules are currently being re-written for clarity, These are
the highlights unitl the final set is finished.
Here are some of the basics:
Side Out Scoring: A team must be serving in order to score. A Let Serve
constitutes a Fault / Side Out. Most tournaments are pool play events with the
top teams moving on to single elimination play-offs, (1 game to 15 no cap.)
Divisions A & B Pool play normally consists of: either: 5 team pools, (each team
plays every team in the pool in matches of 1 game to 15 points with a 17 point
cap) or. 4 team pools, (each team playing every team in the pool in matches of
2 games to 11 with a 13 point cap.) Other variations will be played as needed.
AA Division pool play is normally 1 game to 15 with a 17 point cap reguardless
of the number of teams in a pool due to time constraints. This means if you are
in a 4 team pool you could end up only playing 3 games all day if you don't
advance to the play-offs. The TVC men's and women's events will consist of
pool play followed by a double elimination play-off.
Substitutions: In doubles, once play has started substitutions are not allowed
with one exception: The tournament director (TD) must be notified first,
Substitutions can only be made during pool play. The TD then must pole ALL
PLAYERS in that pool, if ANY PLAYER or the TD objects the substitution is not
allowed. If a player is substituted that team may not proceed to play-offs
under any circumstances, no substitutions are allowed before or during
Serves: A player may not set the serve under any circumstances. A player may
not double the serve. When receiving a serve overhead hands must be
touching. The serve the ball must be hit with any part of the hand or forearm.
Passing: A hard driven ball may be doubled unless you use your hands &
fingers in a setting motion, this will be called as a set and must be perfect.
Basically, if hands and fingers are used in a setting motion at any time, it will
be called as a set and must be perfect. If a player doubles a driven ball, it must
not make an obvious change of direction once played, i.e. off arms, up, then off
face, forward. Free balls may not be doubled. Players my pass the ball with any
part of the body. The ball may not be lifted: i.e. prolonged contact with or
rolling off of the players body or hands. Extended contact with the ball or
grossly changing of the direction of the ball while setting.
Setting: The ball may me set by bumping or hand setting. A "perfect" hand set
should come in the hands with no obvious multiple contacts and leave with a
simultaneous release from both hands in a smooth and even fashion. The ball
should have extremely limited wobble or spin of any kind. It must be instantly
released from the setters hands. If a player intentionally sets the ball over the
net, the ball must be set directly forward or backwards, squared with the
Blocking: A block does not constitute a touch, players still have 3 more plays on
the ball. A block, if directed by the blocking players hands may only be directed
in a downward fashion, not to the left or right.
The Net: A player must not touch the net during the course of play or as a
result of uncontrolled continuation of movement during a play, even if the play
has ended. A player may contact the poles or guy lines during the course of
play as long as that contact doesn't assist in the play of the ball. A player may
come under the net as long as they do not touch or interfere with the other
teams play on the ball. In outdoors the top of the pole is considered the
antennae. Men's height net is 8 feet tall. Women's height net is 7 feet 4 inches
Lines: The lines are 30 feet by 30 ft on each side of the net. The 10 foot line
must be either taped or painted. A male player may attack the ball from behind
the 10 foot line, not on or over it. If he is on or over the 10 foot line the ball
must have a visible upward arch as determined by the refree. Line movement:
If the line moves at all because of the ball landing on or off the court it is
judged as "in the court" and will ruled in bounds. If the line is unintentionally
displaced during the course of play the refree will make the call accordingly. If
the lines are grossly out of place: the refree will call the ball in or out to the
best of their ability. If the line is too close for the refree to call, the play will be
done over. Play does not stop for displaced lines. If the lines are only slightly
out of place: the line count where it lays.
Taunting: Offensive language, taunting or intimidation of an opponent or
referee is not allowed and may be punished by a warning, loss of serve, point,
match or tournament. This includes verbal or physical actions intended to
interfere with an opponents play. The referee is responsible for such calls. A
player may lodge a complaint to the referee or TD upon which appropriate
enforcement must be taken. "We encourage spirited competition but insist on
keeping it respectful and under control."
Ratings/Divisions: Most tournaments offer 3 divisions: B = Entry level to mid
proficiency - A = Intermediate to Advanced level - AA = Expert level. Some
larger events may include: Open = Highest Level, Cash prizes. - Novice =
Beginner, recreational level. Players may play in any division at which they are
rated or above. The division allowed is determined by the rating of the highest
player on the team. A player may play down one level if they are playing with a
junior (under 18 years) or if playing men's division with a female partner. An
event must have at least 8 teams to warrant a rating change. If a player
finishes in the top two in pool play they earn that rating. A player must move
up a division if they win two events in a division in one season or one event
with more than 24 teams in that division. Ratings last for two years from the
time they earned that rating or the last came out of pool in the top two in that
division. The TD has the authority to place anyone in any division they deem
Events: Men's and Women's Doubles, generally played on Saturdays. Reverse
Coed Doubles, generally played on Sundays. Reverse Coed Quads, two male,
two female players per team. Generally played on Memorial Day and Labor Day
events and indoors during the winter season.
Reverse Coed Doubles: Reverse Coed is played on a women's height net 7
feet, 8 inches tall. Women's play by the standard doubles rules. Men's
restrictions in Reverse Coed Doubles are:
Men can only attack the ball from behind the 10 foot line. If the ball is played
on or in front of the 10 foot line the ball must have a visible upward arch, as
determined by the refree.
Men may not block at the net. Men may "soft block". Soft Block: the player must
be at least arms length from the net and hands must be below the players
head. A soft block does counts as a touch. A male player may not joust
(simultaneous contact with the ball) with a female player.
Northern California's Premier Grass Volleyball Tournament Schedule