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What Is Volley in Pickleball – Tips to Improve Volleys

What Is Volley in Pickleball

The volley is a vital shot in pickleball and is often the difference between winning and losing. The goal of this article will be to provide information about what is volley in pickleball, as well as tips on improving your game. 

What Is Volley? 

Volley in pickleball is used when the ball has not yet bounced on either side of the net. The shot requires players to hit the ball before it reaches the other side. They must do so without letting it bounce. A successful volley results in an immediate point for the player that executes it. 

What is volley in pickleball – The volley can be performed with any type of shot, including an overhead shot, a backhand shot, or a forehand shot. When performing the volley, players should maintain a low center of gravity and use their non-dominant hand to keep the racket in control. 

Volley Technique 

Proper Stance for a Volley

Assuming a proper stance is the foundation of a solid volley. You should stand square to the net with your knees bent. It prepares you for quick movements in any direction.

Grip and Paddle Position

A continental grip usually works best for volleys. Hold your paddle before you, ready to meet the ball. The face of the paddle should be perpendicular to the ground.

The Swing for Volleys

A volley doesn’t need a big swing. It’s more about a firm push or a punch-like motion. The key is to make clean contact with the ball and direct it where you want it to go.

Target Areas for Volleys

When executing a volley, your target areas should be the opponent’s feet or the open areas of the court. This makes it challenging for the opponent to return the shot.

Tips and strategies for improving your volley

Know Your Opponent 

The first step to executing a volley is to know your opponent’s style of play. Are they aggressive or defensive? Do they favor certain shots over others? Knowing this information will help you expect their shots and plan your volleys.

Pay Attention to Footwork 

Footwork is key if you want to execute a successful pickleball volley. You need to move quickly and keep your balance while volleying. Make sure you use the right footwork, whether a backhand or forehand volley, for each situation. Practicing your footwork can help you improve your pickleball game.

Practice Positioning 

Positioning is another important factor in improving your volleys. You need to know where the ball is and where you should stand relative to it. Be sure to watch your opponent’s shot trajectory so that you can move into the right spot for each volley.

Keep Your Eye on the Ball 

The last tip for improving your pickleball volleys is keeping an eye on the ball. You need to be able to track it and react to hit a successful volley. It means you must focus on the game and not get distracted by anything else.

Fundamentals of Pickleball Volleys

Know the Rules of Volley 

Before you can master the art of volleying in pickleball, it’s essential to understand the rules and what is volley in pickleball. Hit a volley in the air without allowing the ball to bounce. Remember, you cannot volley the ball in the Non-Volley Zone, also known as the kitchen. Violating this rule results in a fault.

Maintain a Ready Position

A ready position involves keeping your knees bent, feet shoulder-width apart, paddle up in front of you, and eyes on the ball. This position enables a player to move in any direction and is especially important when expecting a volley.

Work on Your Grip

A good grip is crucial for controlling the paddle and the ball’s direction in a volley. The Continental or “shake hands” grip is used as it allows for an easy transition between forehand and backhand volleys. 

Master the Punch Volley

The punch volley is a critical pickleball shot involving a quick punching motion. It requires minimal backswing and a firm wrist, allowing you to return the ball and keep your opponents on the defensive.


What is the best pickleball paddle for volleys? 

The best pickleball paddle for volleys depends on your skill level and preference. For beginners, a lightweight paddle with a wide sweet spot is usually recommended as it provides better control over the ball. Advanced players may prefer a more powerful paddle with a smaller sweet spot. 

How do I improve my pickleball volleys? 

The most effective way to improve your pickleball volleys is through practice and repetition. Start by mastering the basics, such as proper stance, grip, and swing technique. Then, focus on developing quick reflexes and timing.

What is a punch volley in pickleball?

A punch volley is a shot used to return the ball with minimal backswing. It requires a firm wrist and short punching motion for optimal control over the ball.

What is the difference between a volley and a smash? 

The main difference between a volley and a smash is hitting a volley before the ball bounces. At the same time, a smash comes after one or more bounces.

What is a block volley? 

A block volley is a defensive shot that uses your opponents’ power and speed against them. The player keeps their paddle close to the body and angles it to redirect the ball back towards their opponent. This shot requires less swing and power from the player, making it a great option for quick returns. 


What is volley in pickleball – Pickleball volleys can be tricky to master, but you can become a formidable player with practice and repetition. Focus on mastering the fundamentals such as stance, grip, and swing technique. Then, hone your skills with drills tailored to improving your volley game. With the right approach, you can soon execute successful volleys in your pickleball matches.


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