In beach volleyball, it doesn't really matter if you're Phil Dalhausser, one of the best blockers in history or Nick Lucena, one of the quickest and best defenders in the United States. No matter who you are or what your talent level, you're going to need ball control in volleyball, and an ability to make emergency touches accurate and targeted.
It's the nature of the game that not every touch will be perfectly off your platform, into the awaiting hands of your setter, who will put up a sweet honey butter nectar biscuit for you to rip hard angle for a kill. Ideal, yes, but also not realistic.
Watch the video below as JM Plummer shows you how to train emergency touches in beach volleyball, which include an overhead tomahawk, a pokey, and more.
Now, why a tomahawk and a pokey? It's a good question. We've shown you other one-handed touches, like the ice cream cone, flipper, and fist -- now it's time for the overhead one-handed touches. These will come in handy when someone tries to hit a jumbo over you as the defender, or over your head as a peeling blocker. They'll also come in handy when your feet just can't get to the volleyball in time, and you have to pokey set your partner or tomahawk it to a comfortable position from which your partner can set.
To be clear, best practice is to use two hands, and preferably a platform with two arms, when available. But we don't always have that available when playing volleyball. Which is why we're training you for emergency touches for next level beach volleyball ball control.
Drills are a great way to improve your emergency touches and help improve your game overall. Check out the drills below and let us know what are your favorites.
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Sand Angels are a great partner drill to get started. Brandon explains exactly what Sand Angels are and how to execute them in this video.
Tomahawk Pepper - Using your tomahawk, you will bump, set, spike just like in a normal pepper. Still confused on the best way to perform a tomahawk? Mark has the perfect breakdown right here.
Passing Pokeys - It may sound funny, but mastering the perfect pokey can get you out of a jam in a volleyball match. With this drill, you will perform a pokey with each hand before passing it to your partner. Don’t have a partner? Try to see how many consecutive pokeys you can achieve in a row.
Pokeys got you perplexed?
Make sure to check out this video as Coach Brandon Joyner covers how to use the pokey shot, and WHEN to use it on defense and offense.
6 GUNS - For better ball control, every volleyball player must try these pepper speed drills to improve their techniques. Fire it up and let's get to this next set of drills. You will learn Speed Pepper, Handcuff Pepper, and the One Handed Pepper. Check it out!
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Included are diagrams and written explanations of the 36 MOST IMPORTANT EXERCISES you NEED to win more matches!
Get the all the keys and drills for:
Serve & Serve Receive
Bump Setting & Hand Setting
Attacking, Spacing, Vision & Swing Mechanics
Defense + Blocking & Peeling
Ball Control & Emergency Technique
Game Situations & Competitive Drills