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Sitting Volleyball Rules for Seated Players

This section explains the rules of sitting volleyball game. Seated volleyball rules is a Paralympic sport played by athletes with physical impairments.

SITTING DOWN VOLLEYBALL: It’s a seated game of fast flowing action.

The floor-based sport is most enjoyed by disabled and non-disabled players. They compete with and against each other at club level in the United Kingdom.

There is no shortage of opportunities for men and women to play. Many sports centers offer sitting down volleyball rules in England.

Of course, there is an obvious competitive angle to the sport. But players also enjoy the social and recreational rewards. It is an opportunity to meet new people and keep active – much like its Olympic counterpart.

Sitting volleyball games get played seated on the ground. Yet, it may surprise some supporters and fans to learn that many players are ambulant. That means they are able to walk standing up.

Some team members have severe physical conditions. That prevents them from competing in ‘non-disabled‘ stand up volleyball rules and regulations. Even so, it is not uncommon to see ‘disabled‘ players scoring and then standing up in a cheery fit of celebration.

Sitting Down Volleyball Rules

Aim of Sitting Volleyball Game

The goal of the game is similar in most ways to the stand-up version. Players hit a ball over a net and ground it within the opposition’s court area.

Note: The teams have three passes of attacking play after which the ball should get sent over the net.

Seated Volleyball Court Dimensions

The playing area includes a playing court and the free zone. It should be rectangular in shape and symmetrical.

Sitting volleyball rules gets played on a court measuring 10 x 6 meters. The free zone surround should be at least 3 meters wide on all sides.

The net should be 80cm deep and set to an international height from the ground. That net height should be 1.15 meters for men and 1.05 meters for women.

In general, seated volleyball rules are faster games than the indoor Olympic counterpart. The main reason is due to the lower net height.

Rules of Sitting Volleyball for Equipment
  • Typical equipment consists of a jersey and shorts or long pants. Most players wear socks and indoor sports shoes.
  • Players may take part without shoes. They can also wear tight-fitting cycling shorts or leggings underneath their shorts.
  • The ball should be spherical and made of a flexible leather or have a synthetic leather casing. It should have an inner bladder made of rubber or a similar material.
  • The circumference of a sitting volleyball ball is 65-67 centimeters weighing 260-280 grams.
Seated Volleyball Rules for Players

There are six players allowed on the court from each team. That includes a ‘libero‘ defensive specialist and you can have six reserves. The libero wears a different coloured shirt to the rest of the team. There can be up to six player substitutions per set.

General Sitting Volleyball Rules and Regulations

Sit down volleyball rules dictate the actual seating position. It requires players to maintain contact between their pelvis and the floor at all times.

It also relates to when they are hitting or attacking the ball. All players must have one ‘buttock‘ or an extension of the torso in contact with the floor.

But, the rules of sitting volleyball permit blocking of the serve. That is a different ruling than in the standard regulations of volleyball games.

Rules of Sitting Down Volleyball for Scoring

A team scores a point:

  • By successfully grounding the ball on the opponent’s playing court.
  • When the opponent team commits a fault.
  • When the opponent team receives a penalty.
Sit Down Volleyball Rules for Rallies

A rally is the sequence of playing actions from the moment of the service hit by the server until the ball is out of play. A completed rally is a sequence of playing actions which result in the award of a point.

Sit Down Volleyball Rules on Faults

A team commits a fault by making a playing action contrary to the rules (or by violating them in some other way).

Umpires and Officials for Seated Volleyball Rules

Referees judge the faults and determine the consequences. They do so according to the WOVD Official Rules Book of the game.

Winning a Game of Sit Down Volleyball

The winning team is the first to win three sets (out of 5) and there are 25 points in a set.

You must win the set by two clear points. But if a match goes to a deciding fifth set (a 2-2 tie) the first team to 15 points and with a two-point advantage wins.

Advanced Sitting Volleyball Rules

Classification for Playing Volleyball Sitting Down

All male and female amputees and athletes with physical impairments are eligible to play volleyball sitting down. The regulations allow two players with a ‘minimal disability‘ on each team.

This means their disability may appear minimal from a rules’ point of view. But, their disability prevents them from competing in the sport’s non-disabled version. Common injuries qualifying as ‘minimal‘ are missing fingers and anterior cruciate ligament damage.


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WOVD Sitting Volleyball Official Rules Book: [PDF Download Option]

Seated Volleyball Rules and Regulations Played in the United Kingdom