Water volleyball is the perfect sport for sweltering summer days when the heat is so oppressive that you don't even want to move. At the same time, how can you not move? It's summer time, you've got the day off and you want to have some fun. If you have a pool, you're already halfway there. All you need is some equipment, some motivation and some companions who want to jump in for some friendly competition.
Setting up the volleyball 'court'
According to Arizona Central, the first thing you'll want to do is measure your pool to fit the game to its size. Traditional volleyball courts generally have 30 feet on either side of the net for each team. Your pool doesn't have to meet these measurements, just adjust the placement of the net according to the size of your pool, scaling it down for smaller swimming pools. The important thing is to make sure each team has the same amount of space and that there is enough room for everybody to play safely.
The boundaries will depend on the size of your pool. In smaller pools a ball is considered "out of bounds" if it flies out of the pool. For a larger pool simply measure each side, thirty feet for each if it's big enough, and make a barrier with a nylon rope. You'll want to set the net up smack dab in the middle. Some nets require that holes be drilled into the area around the pool, but portable nets are also available, and won't necessitate making a permanent change to your deck! Attach the net to the poles and then hop in the pool and play ball!
The rules of the game
When you're playing a water volleyball game amongst friends you're likely not going to adhere to strict NCAA volleyball guidelines. The main idea is to have fun with it, so if you have to bend some of the rules to fit the needs or desires of the players assembled, do it. However, make sure that whatever rules you do lay down are known and understood by all.
There should be the same number of pepole in each team, and a minimum of two people per team and a maximum of six, depending on the size of the pool. Find Sports Now says that the rules in the water are the same as those in court volleyball: A player on one side of the team serves the ball over the net to the other team, staying within the established boundaries. The play of each team can be affected by whether they're in the deep or the shallow end of the pool.
One way to keep things interesting is to have a designated referee – a friend who prefers tanning to swimming perhaps – who randomly blows a whistle prompting the teams to switch sides. This will also level the playing field to some extent. Shorter players won't spend the whole game playing in the deep end. If anybody in your group is unable to swim, keep them on the shallow end.
The other team can use three hits or less to send the ball to the other side of the net again, and the ball goes back and forth until it's knocked out of bounds, hits the net or hits the water. If a team allows the ball to hit the pool floor, a point is awarded to the opposing team, and whoever ends the game with the most points wins. Generally, the winning team is supposed defeat the other by a two-point margin.