After looking at how to serve in beach volleyball, we'll look at what options are available to trap the ball properly. A proper trap is crucial because it is the first contact with the ball after the serve and thus lays the foundation for the game.

Frontal trap

In a frontal trap, you are behind the ball and therefore take it in front of your body. Bring your arms together in front of your body to form a straight surface. Turn your body in the direction you want to play the ball, and try to play it as high as possible to make it easier for your team-mate to use the ball.

If you are next to the net when you trap the ball, you should kneel. If you "stand up" when you make contact with the ball, you can play it higher, giving you more time to prepare for the attack. Next to the net, the most important thing is to play the ball as high as possible, as the direction in which you can play is very limited, and you and your team-mate will need more time.


Lateral trap

If a frontal trap is not possible for some reason, you still have the option of a lateral one. It is very similar to the frontal version, but you determine the direction of the ball by turning your outstretched arms and not your body.


In beach volleyball, only balls hit hard may be defended with the open hand. If players want to play other balls open-handed, they use the tomahawk. Place both of your palms in each other and raise them above your head. You can then play the ball with the edges of your hands. A variety is the hammer fist, where you make fists and thus transfer more power to the ball.


This technique is rare, but for the sake of completeness, we will have a look at it. If the ball seems to pass your body, but a lateral trap is not possible because it is too high or too close to your body, the technique Chicken-Wing is the right choice. To perform a Chicken-Wing, pull your forearm to your upper arm. You can play the ball with the resulting surface or your elbow. With this technique, you have very little control over the ball and should therefore use it only as a last option.

Practice the Tomahwak at a beach volley court near you

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