Facilities and Equipment
1.1 Playing Area
The playing area includes the playing court and the free zone. (See Figure 1.) The entire playing area must be visible to all team members and officials.
1.1.1 Playing Surface
The court and a free zone area at least 2 meters (6 feet, 6 inches) adjacent to and surrounding the court must be flat, smooth and free of obstructions, other than net supports. The free zone may include playing area that is even with or no more than approximately 1.25 centimeters (1⁄2 inch) lower than the primary surface.
126.96.36.199 The recommended free zone area is 3.05 meters (10 feet) outside the sidelines and 4.58 meters (15 feet) beyond the end lines.
188.8.131.52 Media equipment and personnel are restricted from the areas in front of the team benches, scorekeeper’s table and warm-up area and from the playable surface between the attack lines extended on the bench side of the court. In other areas, media equipment and personnel on the playable surface must be at least 2 meters (6 feet, 6 inches) away from the court, and within 1 meter (3 feet, 3 inches) of the boundary defining the playing area.
1.1.2 Overhead Clearance
184.108.40.206 The playing space includes the playing area and the space above it. The recommended clearance over the playing area is 12.4 meters (41 feet), measured from the playing surface. For facilities constructed after 2006, the space above the playing area must be free of obstruction to a minimum height of 7.62 meters (25 feet) measured from the playing surface.
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1.1.3 Nonplaying Areas
Nonplaying areas are defined as:
220.127.116.11 Walls, bleachers or other spectator seating areas;
18.104.22.168 Team benches and any area behind them;
22.214.171.124 Area between the scorekeeper’s table and team benches; and
126.96.36.199 Any other area outlined in the pre-match conference that is deemed by the first referee to be unsuitable or hazardous. (See Rule 1.4.2.)
1.2 The Court
The playing court is 18 meters (59 feet) long by 9 meters (29 feet, 6 inches) wide. (See Figure 1.)
1.2.2 Court Markings
All lines are 5 centimeters (2 inches) wide and must be a contrasting color from the floor and any other lines (Exception: Rule 188.8.131.52.) No additional temporary markings other than those described below can be applied to the floor.
184.108.40.206 Court Boundary Lines—Two solid (uninterrupted) sidelines (long lines) and two solid (uninterrupted) end lines (short lines) mark the playing court. These boundary lines are drawn inside the dimensions of the playing court.
220.127.116.11 Center Line—The axis of the center line divides the playing court into two equal team courts measuring 9 meters by 9 meters (29 feet, 6 inches by 29 feet, 6 inches) each; however, the entire width of the line is considered to belong to both courts equally. The center line extends beneath the net from sideline to sideline. The center line may have any or all of the following characteristics:
18.104.22.168.1 A solid (uninterrupted) line.
22.214.171.124.2 A solid interrupted line: 10-centimeter line, 5-centimeter break, 10-centimeter line, 5-centimeter break, etc. (4-inch line, 2-inch break, 4-inch line, 2-inch break, etc.)
126.96.36.199.3 A shadow-bordered line with .64-centimeter (1⁄4-inch) borders.
Rule 1 / Facilities and equipment
Figure 1 - THE COURT
.05m .2m .15m
end line attack line
.05m .05m center line
.05m .05m .05m attack line
Rule 1 / Facilities and equipment 15
188.8.131.52 Attack Line—A solid (uninterrupted) line is drawn in each team court between the sidelines, parallel to the center line. The edge of the attack line farthest from the center line measures 3 meters (9 feet, 10 inches) from the axis of the center line. The extension of the attack lines is marked with a solid interrupted line outside the court: 20-centimeter break, 15-centimeter line (8-inch break, 6-inch line) repeated five times to a total length of 1.75 meters (70 inches).
1.3 Zones and Areas Within the Playing Area
1.3.1 Service Zone
The service zone is a 9-meter (29 feet, 6 inches) wide area behind and excluding the end line. At a point 20 centimeters (8 inches) behind and perpendicular to each end line, two lines, each 15 centimeters (6 inches) in length and 5 centimeters (2 inches) in width, are drawn to mark the service zone for each team. Those lines are extensions of the sidelines and are included in the width of the zone. The service zone has a minimum depth of 2 meters (6 feet, 6 inches), but extends to the limit of the free zone.
1.3.2 Substitution Zone
The substitution zone is the area defined by the imaginary extension of both attack lines, the sideline and the scorekeeper’s table.
1.3.3 Front Zone
On each team court, the front zone is defined by the axis of the center line and the attack line. The front zone, center line and attack lines are considered to extend indefinitely beyond the sidelines.
1.3.4 Warm-Up Area
The warm-up area begins at the end of the team bench or at the end line (whichever is nearer the scorekeeper’s table), and is located at least 1.75 meters (70 inches) from the court and service zone. (See Rule 184.108.40.206.)
1.3.5 Team Area
The team area includes the team court, the free zone surrounding it, the team bench and the warm-up area. Team benches or chairs are to be placed outside the free zone on the right and left of the scorekeeper’s table not nearer the center line than the attack line.
Rule 1 / Facilities and equipment
The playing surface must not present danger of injury to the players. Play shall not be conducted on any surface that is wet, slippery or constructed of abrasive material. The playing surface may be wood or a synthetic material that is smooth and free of any abrasive surface.
1.4.2 First Referee Discretion
The playing area, in all cases, must be under the control of the first referee before and during a match. The first referee is responsible for deciding whether the playing area is suitable for play.
1.4.3 Divider Nets
It is recommended that partitions or divider nets be used to define the playing space when adjacent courts are in use.
1.4.4 Special Ground Rules
Any special ground rules for a match must be specified in the pre-match conference by the first referee.
Note: The event administration and officials should take all reasonable precautions to ensure the safety of the participants.
220.127.116.11 The court should be uniformly and adequately lighted. For information on recommended specifications for lighting, as published by the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America, contact the NCAA Volleyball Rules liaison.
18.104.22.168 Strobe lights are allowed. Courtside flash photography is prohibited within 2 meters (6 feet, 6 inches) of the court. Flash photography outside the 2-meter area is allowed unless it presents a safety hazard.
1.5 Other Equipment
A visible scoreboard must be provided. It should be divided into two parts with large numbers to provide a running score for each team. A device displaying running time and a visual display of timeouts and substitutes is
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recommended. Information shown on the scoreboard is not official and may not be used as a basis for protest.
1.5.2 Officials Seating
Seating should be available at or near the scorekeeper’s table for match officials’ use.
1.5.3 Measuring Device
Each court should have a measuring device to check the height of the net. The measuring device should be marked at a height of 2.24 meters (7 feet, 41⁄8 inches).
1.5.4 Referee Platform
A referee’s platform is required. (See Rule 18.2.1.) The platform must be on a support and should be adjustable; the first referee’s eye position should be approximately 50 centimeters (19 inches) above the top of the net. It should be constructed so that it presents the least potential hazard for players. The front and sides of the platform and supports must be padded. (See Rule 22.214.171.124.)