As a setter, you hold either the team’s most powerful position or sometime the most frustrating one. Setters control the tempo, create the offense and maintain momentum. How do one become a good setter? What are the skills that a setter should posses?
Setter MindSet: A good setter should have the ability to convert a bad pass into a good set for a weak or struggling hitter. A setter’s job is to set. What does that mean? It means a setter always do their best to put the ball where they supposed to be. If your middle hitter called a quick A attack, a setter will set the quick A to the proper height location so the middle hitter can tackle it with ease. A setter controls the tempo of the team’s offense. If the pass is flat and fast to the net or way off the net, a setter can slow it down, adjust the ball back close to the net and organize the offense effectively rather than merely pushing the ball over the net. A setter should react fast, move fast on every pass. What is fast? When you know a free ball is coming, the setter needs to get into the setter position ready for the pass with plenty of time to peak at the blockers with a set in mind for the attack.
Jump Sets: Jump set is a great skill to master, it creates a faster tempo attacks on your offense. It may also makes it easier to set quick sets as well as tips by the setter. It needs a lot of practice to master, practice makes perfect!
Tight Sets: When a passer overpassing the ball over the net, there are still time a setter can do something about the pass besides trying to block the hitter from smashing it back to your court. To save a tight pass, you will need to do a jump set. Depending on the height of the ball, you may or may not be able to reach it with both of your hands and make a good set. If you can, you always wants to set it like a regular jump set, or with your body turned and face your own court when you set to avoid touching the net. If you could not, then you have 2 options, set it with one hand using only four fingers without your thumb, or use your fist/knuckle which is more difficult to control the ball. When you do one hand sets, always use the hand close to the net, and try to avoid a lift. Finally, if you could not make a good set, do your best to tip it to either left or right to avoid a block. Or if you are a tall setter, or a setter with UPs, then you can just jump up and spike it over.
Save The Net: When a passer passing the ball into the net, there are also time for you to save the ball and make a good set out of it. Your first step is to watch the ball to see where the ball is going to hit the net, and position yourself under it and stay as low as possible. Bend your knees, crouch down and wait for the ball to drop out of the net so you can make a bump set with both arms or even with one hand. When you bump set, remember to stand up as you make contact with the ball, so you can bring the ball high up and your teammates can take over. Staying low allows you more time to deal with the ball, so make sure you stay low.
Low Pass Sets: Sometime the pass is low and quick, the setter will need to set it or bump it at a low position. A low set position is ideal since then the setter can roll backwards and stand up. But if the ball is coming at you too fast, all you can do it bump it up with any part of your arm/body, bring it up high so your teammates can take care of it.
Tipping: Tipping is always the case if the ball is pass too tight to the net when the setter could not make a set or too lazy to make a set. However, the best time to tip is actually when it is a good high pass. Why? Because your opponents may not be expecting the tip. When it is a pass bad, everyone can expect it’s going to be a tip. You will not give your opponents a surprise. It always helps if you have been watching your opponents and tip the ball to where they least expected. The thing for tipping is, don’t do it too often, afterall, you are a setter, not a hitter. A setter’s job is to organize offense which means set your hitters.