Originally founded in 1895 by William G. Morgan as “Mintonette,” the sport of volleyball has well advanced from a leisure activity to an Olympic sport with nearly twenty different branches to its original form. Though the number of variations is large, the two most commonly known forms of the game are indoor volleyball and beach volleyball. Although being of the same sport, their contrasting play settings are bound to cause few differences in rules and regulations.
Here are some of the common details that differentiate both branches:
A standard indoor volleyball team consists of six players, while the standard beach volleyball team consists of two players. Indoor volleyball players are assigned specific positions such as outside hitter and defensive specialist, each focusing on a different aspect of the game. Given positions highlight strong points of players that they focus on improving more. On the other hand, beach volleyball players do not have any positions, and instead are well-rounded to adapt to each aspect of the game, though one player usually maintains blocking while the other covers receiving.
The Playing Court
The measures of indoor volleyball courts are set to 18m x 9m, while beach volleyball perimeters are set to 16m x 8m. While indoor volleyball courts have attack lines 3m from the center line, beach volleyball does not have any sections to the court. That said, movement is far restricted for indoor volleyball players, as those in the back row aren’t allowed to cross the given attack line.
Typically, indoor volleyballs are created from leather that is molded together and are heavier in mass than beach volleyballs, which are made of composite leather material stitched together to provide a lightweight mass. Beach volleyballs are also of larger size than their counterparts, made for players to take advantage of the weather and wind. On the other hand, indoor volleyballs are considerably more solid and dense, needed for quick movements and powerful spikes.
The Point System
An official indoor volleyball match runs for five sets, with a minimum of 25 points to win each set. On the other hand, beach volleyball runs on a best of three system, with each set requiring a minimum of 21 points for winning.
Similarly, both branches involve the change of 15 points needed to win when in a tiebreaker scenario. In the case of indoor volleyball, it’s used for the fifth set in a match, while being used in the third set of a beach volleyball match. Additionally, both sports require a lead of two points to win a set
The Court Changes
In indoor volleyball, teams alternate courts after every set. In case of a fifth set occurring, the teams switch court sides after any of the two reach 8 points. In beach volleyball, sides are switched after every seven points without any delay in between. In case of a third set occurring, courts are switched after every five points.