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Take your game to the next level: The Rules

Today we're dropping knowledge on how to take your game from the learning stages to the bright lights of the fiercest competition in all the Spikeball land. If you've never played before you should click below for the basics:



If you've played before then that means you’ve found the beautiful game we call Spikeball.  You’re excited. You’ve become addicted and all you can tell your friends about it is how much they’re going to love it.  To your delight, a buddy of yours already knows Spikeball from his summer camp.  Your girlfriend ALSO knows about Spikeball from her summer in Nantucket.  Could this be more perfect?  You all head out to the beach to play when you realize that little arguments seem to be popping up because you’ve all been playing by different rules.  You’re still having epic rallies but it’d be nice to know whether or not your friend Craig is mistaken about a rule or not.  Is it gentleman’s serve or can you serve it as hard as you want?  Do you get a fault?  What is a pocket?  Do you play through them? 

While we at Spikeball Inc. support any and all ways that our community creates to play this beautiful game, if you’re looking for the current rule standards to take your game to the next level, check out the info below.  Playing like this will appease arguments and (most importantly), get you ready to play in your first USA Spikeball event with all of the pros!

The Serve:

One of the most important things to standardize is the serve.  When you are first learning you might play with what you would call a “Gentlemen Serve”, where in the server hits it with good height to the opposing team, with the goal of getting the point successfully started.  As your skills grow, you might begin to feel that you’ve reached a plateau and that the receiving team has too much of an advantage.  Here’s what you need to know to play with real serving:

•The server must stand 6 feet back from the Spikeball set.

•Only the returning player opposite the server can return the serve, his/her partner cannot.

•If you outright miss the net, hit the rim, or the Spikeball bounces twice on the set, you lose the point and the other team serves.

•If you hit the ball higher than the outstretched hand of the returner, that is a redo (READ: fault).

•If you hit a “pocket” on the serve, that is also considered a redo/fault.

•In both of the prior instances if the returner feels as though the high serve or the pocket is something that they want to play, they can, and the point officially starts when their partner engages on the 2nd hit.  Before that 2nd hit, either player can shut the point down.

•If you are serving and you win the point you and your partner switch positions and the defense stays in the same place.  You ONLY switch if your team is serving and you win a point.  (i.e. If the returning team wins the point, they now serve starting from the same positions for all four players as the previous point.)

Game Play:

You all know you get up to 3 hits to get it back off the net and that each “on” or Spike must get off the net in one bounce or you lose the point.  That is the foundation for Spikeball.  Follow these other simple rules when playing to understand it all:

•Unlike on the serve, all “Pockets” are live.  Yes, sometimes it can be hard to tell in the heat of the action whether it is a pocket or a true rim.  If there are disagreements, redo it!

•Call a hinder if the defense is impeding on your ability to get the ball.  And then, redo the point.

•If you Spike it and the ball hits your partner or yourself, you lose the point.


Easy enough? Pick up a Spikeball Pro Set to take your game to the next level:


Spike On,

The Spikeball Crew 


Gary D Sievertsen
Gary D Sievertsen

April 22, 2019

Got to be the stupidest thing I’ve ever seen.


March 07, 2019

On a serve, when the ball is hit toward the back of the net and it comes off the net with a high trajectory, but lands on a normal height to the receiver straight on, is that considered a pocket? Please clarify. Thanks!!

mary ellen
mary ellen

January 30, 2019

I know a player may pass the ball to a teammate before returning a serve but on the initial serve of the game is the pass to a temmate mandatory?

Mac Thomas
Mac Thomas

June 05, 2018

Is front pocket fine on serve where it shoots off net low and hard
Is a pocket on a serve that doesn’t bounce Foward off the net but lands back towards the server a loss of point
Rims and pockets during gameplay is always confusing depending on which team your on
is there any way of ruling between the two
A hard pocket sometime sounds like a rim

Nathan Steffensmeier
Nathan Steffensmeier

May 13, 2018

If I fake like I’m going to hit the ball to confuse the other team but I never get in the way of them hitting the ball is that a hinder?


December 19, 2017

When serving, does contact have to be made behind the 6’ line or does the servers feet only have to be behind the line?

Matt Hammer
Matt Hammer

July 28, 2017

Can you only when a point when serving? And when it’s game point does the team who is currently at game point serve or does the opposing team automatically serve on game point?


June 12, 2017

When you serve the ball do you use only one hand or do you use one hand to pitch the ball into the air and the other to hit it? And how full of air should the ball be?


June 06, 2017

During gameplay if the ball hits the rim and the ball hits the opposing teams leg and goes on the trampoline who’s point is it??


March 16, 2017

two questions;
If the serve is straight at the returner, can you serve soft and short?
If hard and high, does the returner have to attempt to jump for it?

Brady Chung
Brady Chung

November 03, 2015

It must go straight at the returner on the serve, no pockets or rims

Joel La Course
Joel La Course

July 07, 2015

when I’m serving does it have to go straight to the opposing player or can it go to the said of the player if I curve my serve.

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