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What Are the Differences Between Beach Volleyball and Indoor Volleyball?

What Are the Differences Between Beach Volleyball and Indoor Volleyball?

Summer is the perfect time to gather your family and friends for a fun and competitive game of volleyball. However, whether it be beach volleyball or indoor volleyball, you’ll want to make sure you’re playing safely. To ensure you follow the rules and avoid injury, here are some of the differences between beach and indoor volleyball and the various risks that come with each version of the sport.

Beach vs. Indoor Volleyball

Although there are various similarities between beach and indoor volleyball, each game possesses a few unique differences.

  • Scoring

    Indoor volleyball matches consist of five sets, or games. The first team to get 25 points wins the game. Three sets wins the match, and the fifth tiebreaker set, if needed, is played to 15 points. Beach volleyball matches consist of a series of best-of-three games, with each game played to 21 points. Two sets wins the match, and the third tiebreaker set, if needed, is also played to 15 points. In both indoor and outdoor volleyball, one team has to win by two points.

  • Court Sizes

    Indoor courts are 60’ x 30’w and have an attack line 10’ from the center line, which back row players must stay behind when hitting the ball. Beach courts are smaller at 52’ x 26.25’w and do not have an attack line.

  • Balls

    Indoor volleyballs are made of leather and are heavier than outdoor volleyballs. Beach volleyballs are larger, softer, and lighter than indoor volleyballs.

  • Players Per Side

    Indoor volleyball has six players per team, with each player having a specific role. Beach volleyball has two players on each side, as beach volleyball players are typically free to move around and cover more ground.

  • Footwear

    Beach volleyball players typically play the sport barefoot. While the lack of foot support could contribute to rolled ankles and sprains, footwear is not very practical on sand courts. Conversely, thick-soled shoes are a necessity on hard, indoor volleyball courts to help gain traction, leverage, and positioning when serving, sprinting, or receiving the volleyball.

Common Beach and Indoor Volleyball Injuries

Injuries common suffered by beach volleyball players include:

Common injuries that affect indoor volleyball players include:

  • Ankle sprains, fractures, and ligament/tendon injuries
  • Jumper’s Knee (Patellar Tendonitis)
  • Shoulder injuries
  • Jammed, dislocated, and fractured fingers
  • Lower back pain

Orthopaedic Treatments for Any Volleyball Injury

At Orthopaedic Associates of St. Augustine, our team of orhopaedic specialists and physicians are proud to play a role in helping athletes regain mobility and get back to their daily routines without pain. If you’ve experienced any type of volleyball injury or orthopaedic ailment, our team is here to help. Please request an appointment online or give us a call at 904-825-0540.

Dr. McClone - Sports medicine doctor St. AugustineCasey McClone, MD
Board Certifications in Family Medicine and Sports Medicine. Dr. McClone specializes in treating musculoskeletal pain for patients of all ages with ultra-sound guided injections.