2013 Libero Serving Guidelines
Liberos will be permitted to serve for the 2013 volleyball season. Click here to see the details of this new rule.
02/15/2012: In an effort to answer questions and clarify the Libero Serve rule, USA Volleyball has put together this document to help interpret these new rule changes.
Significant Rule Changes for 2011-2013
The USA Volleyball Domestic Competition Regulations are now available. Click here to view a summary of the significant changes. All of the indoor and outdoor competition rules can be
found on the USA Volleyball website.
Significant Rules Changes for 2009-2011
All Indoor Changes
No player will be permitted to play while wearing a cast
USAV 4.5.1: “It is forbidden to wear hats or jewelry. An exception will be made for religious or medical medallions and, for adult competition, a flat band ring worn on the finger. If worn, medallions shall be removed from chains and taped or sewn under the uniform. If a ring, other than a flat band, cannot be removed, it shall be taped in such a manner as not to create a safety hazard. Braces, prosthetic limbs or headgear that may cause an injury or give an artificial advantage to the player must not be worn. If a brace, prosthetic limb or headgear is used, padding or covering may be necessary. Casts, even if padded, are forbidden.”
Narrative Explanation of Change in Regulation
This change clarifies that under no circumstances will a player be allowed to play while wearing a cast.
Coaches must sign the scoresheet at the conclusion of the match
Add USAV 5.1.3: Defines when and by whom the scoresheet is signed.
Add New USAV 5.1.3: “For junior competition, both coaches sign the scoresheet after the match to verify the results.”
USAV 5.2.2: Defines when and by whom the scoresheet is signed.
USAV 5.2.2: "The coach does not sign the scoresheet before the match.”
Narrative Explanation of Change in Regulation
These changes clarify that neither the coach nor captain sign the scoresheet prior to the match and in junior competitions, the coach signs after the match to verify the results.
Net and Centerline Violations
10.1.3: “The ball that is heading towards the opponent’s court through the lower space is in play until the moment it has completely crossed the vertical plane of the net.”
126.96.36.199: “to touch the opponent’s court with any part of the body above the feet is permitted provided that it does not interfere with the opponent’s play.”
11.3.1: “Contact with the net by a player is not a fault, unless it interferes with the play.”
11.3.2: “Players may touch the post, ropes, or any other object outside the antennae, including the net itself, provided that it does not interfere with play.”
This group of rules seems to be the most visible change to coaches and players. Please be aware of the new rules and take the time to familiarize yourself with them. Here is an online presentation that explains the change, and how it will be enforced, skip to slide 35 for the net violation specifics. (Be sure to have your speakers on for the audio.) USAV Volleyball Rules Presentation courtesey of Carolina RVA
Substitutions will occur only when the sub enters the zone.
15.10.3: Substitutions are only recognized when the sub enters the zone. There is no longer a request from the coach or captain.
1. Deleted 15.10.3: “At the moment of the substitution request, the substitute player(s) must be ready to enter the court, standing close to the substitution zone. If that is not the case, the substitution is not granted and the team is sanctioned for a delay. For FIVB World and Official Competitions, numbered paddles are used to facilitate the substitution.”
2. Replaced with 15.10.3a: “The actual request for substitution is the entrance of the substitute player(s) into the substitution zone, ready to play, during a regular interruption.”
3. Replaced with 15.10.3b: “If that is not the case, the substitution is not granted and the team is sanctioned for a delay.”
4. Replaced with 15.10.3c: “The request for substitution is acknowledged and announced by the scorer or second referee, by use of the buzzer or whistle, respectively.”
For FIVB World and Official Competitions, numbered paddles are used to facilitate the substitution.”
All Outdoor Changes
USAV 13.4.2/13.4.3: “Plays involving finger action require special attention. If the play is defensive and reactive in nature, as in the case of a hard-driven ball, momentarily held or double-contacted are not considered faults. Furthermore, this may apply to the second touch of a team if the block contact was slight and the ball is still a hard-driven attack, or to the defensive action (team first contact) after a ball has been blocked. If the player decides/intends to employ finger action, as in the case of off-speed attack defense or setting, the action must be “clean.”
USA Volleyball Rule Change Announced
As per the Executive Committee decision of October 8, 2007, the USA Volleyball Rules Interpreter Steve Thorpe has released the following rule change wording to be effective immediately:
New USAV 5.3.1
"One assistant coach may leave the bench to give instructions to the players on the court. This assistant coach may give these instructions while standing or walking within the free zone in front of his/her team bench from the extension of the attack line up to the warm-up area, no closer than 1 meter from the court, without disturbing or delaying the match. Other assistant coaches may give instructions to players on the court while remaining seated on the team bench."
Replacing the old USAV 5.3.1
"While remaining on the bench, the assistant coach(es) may give instructions to the players on the court."
Q & A - What does this really mean?
1) For teams with multiple assistant coaches on the bench, will the "one" assistant coach that is allowed to stand up be "one-at-a-time" per dead ball or will it be a pre-defined assistant coach prior to the start of the match/set?
- One at a time; but not just during a dead ball, at any time during play. There is no need to designate a "Stand-up Assistant" for a set or match.
2) Will the teams be able to change the "one" assistant coach for each set (ala the libero). If so, how will such a change be noted and communicated?
- Not necessary. See answer above.
3) Can that assistant coach talk to the referee?
- The Head Coach, Yes, within the usual limits specified in Rule 5.2.1. The Assistant Coach, No. The Rule (5.3.1) still says the assistant coaches have no right to intervene in the match.
Rules comparison documents are developed annually by PAVO in conjunction with USA Volleyball and NFHS. Click here to view rule comparisions.