Project Description


Overview & Examples

Volleyball is team sport in which two teams of 6 players are separated by a net. Each team tries to score points by grounding a ball on the other team’s court. Each team receives three contacts to prevent an opponent’s attack from being grounded while simultaneously setting up its own attack. The ball is usually played with the hands or arms; which includes blocking, digging, passing, setting, and spiking the ball in offensive and defensive plays.

See All Rules

Traditional Formats

6-on-6 men’s, women’s, co-rec, and mixed indoor leagues


Two officials per game — an up official who is positioned in an officials stand at the net and a down official positioned at floor level at the net across from the up official — are traditionally used to enforce rules and administer penalties. Four officials may be utilized in competitive play with the addition of 2 line judges. One official (the up official) may be used in recreational play.

The game score is typically kept by a courtside official; however a scorekeeper may be utilized for additional assistance.


Many institutions utilize the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) volleyball rules as a basis for intramural volleyball rules. Individual programs often modify these rules for their unique participant groups and program requirements.

Notes & Variations

Intramural matches often consist of a best 2-of-3 games format with either rally scoring (a point is scored on all serves regardless of who serves) or sideout scoring (a point is scored only when the serving team scores). Rally scoring games may be to 25 or 30 points. Sideout scored games are often to 15 points.

The libero position is not often utilized in recreational leagues. Additionally, substitutions may be limited to specific points in a game.

Co-rec leagues employ a variety of rule variations to encourage and/or limit participation by particular players including requiring a member of each gender to contact the ball when two or three contacts are made by a team to return the ball over the net. The service rotation may be required to alternate between genders.

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NIRSA Intramural Sports Community of Practice