Adding Players During Play
Back-row player attacks
Ball contacting the body
"A" players in "B" leagues
Center line violations
Delays in starting a match
Dialog with referee
Eligibility for playoffs
Food and drink
Front-row player attacks
Four Men and One Woman
Games per match
Legal Team Composition
Lifting or carrying the ball
Losing Players During Play
One Woman and Four Men
Playing the first ball
Reverse Coed Rules
Serving into the Net
Signing the roster
Two rally score games equal a match Record is based on games won/lost. Two timeouts allowed per game; 30 seconds timeouts.
Schedule will indicate which team serves first and from what side of the court. 2 minutes before official starting time referee will call last hit and the first serve is exactly at the starting time. Teams not ready are penalized one point for each minute. At 5 minutes game 1 is forfeited, another 5 minutes and game 2 is forfeited. Teams without 4 members to officiate at the prescribed time will receive a loss.
Free substitution for all leagues. Player A for B/B for A as often as you like. A man cannot replace a woman (nor vice-versa) when substituting. A player may only substitute back into the lineup for the player who replaced him/her originally. Teams may rotate players in, but the coed rule (at least one member of the opposite sex on the court at all times) is in force at all times. Teams cannot substitute and rotate in the same game; must be one or the other. A team must rotate positions on every sideout, including the first serve of the game. Team A serves the ball to Team B. Team B wins the rally and must rotate. When rotating, a team must rotate a player in and out on every sideout (unless a team is just rotating the women, or just rotating the men). A man may replace a woman when rotating, as long as there are still at least 2 women on the court at all times. If there are only two members of the opposite sex at the league that night, neither of those two players would rotate out. If a team only has one member of the opposite sex at the league that night, they may play with a total of 4 players. The libero: All levels have the option of using the libero. This is a backrow sub who can now serve, but cannot hit or set (can't set using their hands in front of the 10 foot line). After being replaced in the front row, the libero must sit out at least one serve before returning to the backrow.
A team must have at least 4 players to play. Here is a list of all of the legal compositions of a team: 1 woman and 3 men, 3 women and 1 man, 2 women and 2 men, 2 women and 3 men, 3 women and 2 men, 3 women and 3 men, 2 women and 4 men, 4 women and 2 men. Also now legal is 4 women and 1 man, with one rule: The woman still serves in the proper order, but she must start each play at right front. 99% of the teams play 2 women and 4 men. When playing with 4 or 5, there are no imaginary players when rotating for sideouts. (There are 3 front-row players.) When playing with just 4 players, have the backrow player be the server. The remaining three players are front row players. Easier to identify for the referees and the opposing teams.
Whatever number of players a team begins play with, that number must remain constant for the remainder of the game. If you start a game with 5, you continue and finish playing with 5. A late player may sub in, but the number remains same.
A player must sign the roster before playing. You can only play on one team in each league. To be eligible for playoffs, a player must have played in at least 4 league matches. If a player plays on one team and wants to change teams, here is what needs to be done: The player in question, both captains and the supervisor must all be present. The player's name on the former roster is crossed out, the player signs the new roster in front of everyone and the player may not return to the original team under any circumstances. As far as playoff eligibility: We're strict on playoffs, loose on league. Sign the roster and you're eligible for league play. For playoffs, you need to have played at least two nights (4 matches). The ONLY exceptions are: If someone is injured right in front of everyone at the last league night and there are no eligible subs or if the IVL changes the playoff night. You still need to get the approval of the league director.
Only front-row players may contact a ball completely above the height of the net and send it across while at the net in front of the 10 foot line. Back-row players must jump from behind the 10 foot line to contact a ball completely above the height of the net in front of the 10 foot line and send it across.
Serving: The current rule states that after the whistle is blown, you have 8 seconds to put the ball in play, and you only get one toss. If you catch the toss, or allow the ball to drop to the floor, it's a sideout. Also, the ball cannot be hit out of your hand when serving. You must either toss or drop the ball from your hand before making contact. It is a foot fault if you step past the outside edge of the extension of the sideline. It is okay to step on the sideline extension, but not past the outside edge. Serves that touch the net and land in the opponent's court are in play. Players may not go past the sideline extensions that extend to the walls when chasing balls.
You cannot block the serve. A player near the net and not above the height of the net when contacting the ball is not a blocker, even if the player was above the net earlier in the play. In this case, that first contact would be the first team hit. After a touch on the block (when a player contacts the ball above the height of the net) a team still has three hits left.
The ball may contact any part of your body, regardless of intent. However, a serve must be hit with either the hand or arm.
No one may lift or carry the ball. Bump the ball, do not scoop it underhanded as this is illegal. Face the direction you are setting (or for back sets, directly back) rather than carrying the ball across the body. The ball must be played cleanly--it cannot visibly come to rest on any person's hands or body.
Multiple/double-hits: You are allowed to multiple/double-hit the ball if 1)It is the first ball over the net and 2) You make only one attempt to play the ball (as Gary Wakai, formerly of the USA Rules of the Game Commission says, "In your heart, you know what we mean"). If your team touches the ball on the block, the next play is considered the "first ball".
You may use finger action on the first ball and multiple/double-hit it as long as you don't lift the ball. A lifted ball is one that visibly comes to rest against a bodily part. You are allowed to set the first ball (including the serve) in any level of the IVL as long as it is not a lift. In summary: You can set the first ball and mangle it, double-hit it, have it make noise going through the air AS LONG AS IT IS NOT A LIFT. If you set the first ball and a referee calls you for a lift, that's the end of the play. You can politely say, "Double-hits are legal on the first play" but if the referee answers "Yes, but I felt it was a lift" then that's the end of the discussion. Referees: Make sure you signal a lifted ball and not a double-hit, if you choose to call that play. Players: We still recommend bumping the first ball, especially in the Recreational and some of the Returning B levels. Why give the referee a chance to make a call? However, it's your choice. But if you get called for a lift, you can't complain.
Setting criteria: Rec B--As long as the setter is facing the direction either directly to or directly back, generally no throw will be called. In the Returning B, if the setter obviously mishandles the ball, it should be called. If it's a marginal set, it should be called if the setter is not facing the direction. In the BB and A: It needs to be a good set or it's going to be called. One rule of thumb: If you can't count the revolutions of the ball going through the air--that would be called in the BB and A, and the better Returning B leagues. Deep-dish setters who massage the ball should not try to laterally set the ball since you are almost guaranteed of throwing/lifting the ball.
Open hand dinks: Legal as long as the ball is directed in one motion, in one direction.
No cap in rally score games. You need to win by two points.
"A" players may play in the BB leagues, but not always in the B. "Open" players are generally asked not to play below A. Rec B leagues are for recreational play, any player not conforming to that will be asked to play at another level. Final decision by the IVL Director. Men's, Women's & Reverse Coed leagues don't affect anyone's status.
Inadvertent Nets: If you are involved in a play at the net (either before, during or after the ball has been played), and you touch the net, it is a net. Inadvertent nets only apply to a player who brushes against the net but who is away from the play, and not involved in any way with the play of the ball. Note: Incidental contact with the net by a player's hair is not considered a net.
Overhead: You may play the ball off the ceiling and overhead obstructions (baskets, etc.) as long as you would have had a legal hit remaining if the ball had not hit the ceiling/obstruction. Note: The ball must contact the ceiling above playable area on your side of the net. If you can't stand under the area the ball hit and legally play the ball, it would be out of play. Linespeople may need to help make this call on occasion. There may be specific ground rules for the gym you play in. See your league supervisor.
"Hand/foot" rule concerning the center line: Players may penetrate the opponent's court beyond the center line with the hand as well as the foot provided some part of the penetrating hand or foot remains either in contact with or directly above the center line.
No one should referee unless they have at least taken the written test. Now available online.
Only the captain may speak with the referee. If any one person gets out of line, the ref should warn him/her with a yellow card. If this same person disrupts play again, the ref will issue a point or sideout (red card) to the other team. The league supervisor at the site should be notified if someone receives a red card. That person/team will receive a warning from the League Director. If it happens again, the penalities may consist of a one week suspension, two week suspension expulsion from the league with no refund.
If there is a protest over the outcome of a particular game or match, the League Director must be notified within 24 hours.
No food or drink in the gym. Sealed, plastic water bottles only.
No smoking, alcoholic beverages or drugs on the school grounds (this includes the parking lot).
Played on a women's height net with 3 men and 3 women.
There is no rule about either sex having to touch the ball before it goes
over the net.
If there is only one woman in the front row, another woman is allowed to
block at the net but not hit.
If a man sends the ball over the net, it must travel in an upward trajectory,
whether he's front row or back row.
Jump serving is legal.
You are allowed to have 4 women and 2 men, but only 3 of the women are
allowed to play as hitters/blockers and the 4th woman, who is playing
"as a man" must be identified to the other team and the officiating team
before the match begins.
Each supervisor has a handout explaining the proper rotation when a reverse
coed team is playing with less than 6.
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Industrial Volleyball League, Inc.
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947 Emerald Hill Road
Redwood City, CA 94061
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