How to Jump Serve In Volleyball? (Topspin & Float Serve)

Micah Drews


Volleyball jump serves involve throwing the ball into the air and hitting it in midair by jumping and hitting it. It has a lot of power and speed, which makes it popular in college and professional volleyball games. You can rack up points quickly with the jump serve by confusing and demoralizing the opposing team.

Serves are the foundation of every volleyball point, so it is important to make them count. Improve your power jump serve and score more aces on the court by learning how to jump serve.

In order to play more skilledly in game situations, you need to master specific techniques that help you master the basics of your sport. A player’s serve can either make or break his or her game in sports such as tennis and volleyball. Reily Buechler, WAVE Volleyball coach, said, “Serving in general is so important. It’s the beginning of the point.”

Having played competitive collegiate volleyball for four years before graduating to coach professionally for WAVE Volleyball in San Diego, California, Buechler knows that the more power and precision you put into your serve, the more difficult it will be for the other team. 

A volleyball jump serve can be either topspin or float. Buechler demonstrates both types in this video. For left-handed players, switch the directions according to your dominant side if the directions are for right-handed players.

Tips for Perfect Jump Serving in Volleyball

How to Jump Serve In Volleyball

Jump serves are used in volleyball to add more power and height to the serve. Depending on the player, one or both hands may be used to toss. In some cases, people toss with one hand to achieve a higher top spin.

As a result, the ball will be easier to control and keep over the net. A fast hybrid serve is created by throwing with both hands, giving the serve less spin and allowing it to drive deeper. Take a look at the steps below for some tips on how to jump serve to prepare for a Nike Volleyball camp this summer!

The steps to jump serve are as follows:

  • You may use both hands or the opposite hand to hit the volleyball.
  • The ball should be thrown high and several feet away.
  • Using a short attack approach, swing your arms behind you and step forward with your left or right foot while hopping quickly.
  • Keep behind the end line as you jump up and forward.
  • Your reach and jump should be at the top of the ball.
  • Put topspin on the ball by striking it with your palm and swinging your arm downward and outward.

There are no differences between serving with one hand or with two hands!

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How To Topspin Jump Serve?

How to Jump Serve In Volleyball

In topspin jump serves, the server must exert a lot of energy, but if the other team cannot return the serve, your team receives an ace. The easier defense will be for us when the other team is put on the back foot, Buechler said. Because of all the power you put behind a topspin jump serve, it is more likely to go where you expect it to.

Set Up

Your dominant hand should hold the ball. 

Taking four large steps back from the finish line is a good idea. If your foot enters the court before you serve the ball, you will fault, which is when the ball is not served well. You’ll need plenty of space to run up and jump powerfully without faulting.


Add momentum to your step by launching off your left leg (your third step).

For your swing, your arms will come back into the shape of a bow and arrow as you jump up. 


With your non-dominant hand facing straight out at the volleyball, pull your attacking hand back into a bow and arrow shape.

The left (non-dominant) arm will come down during the swing, while the attacking arm extends and reaches up to the middle of the volleyball. 


Your first step should consist of tossing the ball about five feet high and five feet ahead of you. 

The dominant hand is the one you will use to toss the ball, or the one you will swing with.


In order to reach the end line with the topspin jump serve, you must take three steps. Those who are right-handed will step left, right, left. You will step right, left, right if you are left-handed.

You will extend your hands in front of you on your first step. 

You swing your hands back behind you on your second step. 

Jumping begins with your arms shooting up and out on your third step.  

Take action

Creating topspin requires flicking your hand outward and downward over the top of the volleyball.

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How To Jump Float Serve?

How to Jump Serve In Volleyball

Since jump float serves require less energy from the server but are just as challenging for the other team to receive, they are more common. As the ball moves unpredictably through the air, the float serve gets its name from the way it can change direction at any time.

Buechler said it is difficult to pass when someone consistently jump floats because they may think it is coming to them, but the jump float may finish in a completely different direction.

Conversely, jump float serves aren’t appropriate for every play since they aren’t as powerful. You’re more focused on the athlete’s float capability than they’re on the power they’re putting forth.”

Set Up

Step back three steps from the finish line.

Put your left foot forward while holding the ball with your left hand. Make sure your dominant right hand is back, arched, and ready to swing. 


Take a left, a right, and a left step. The ball is in the air, so you should jump up to meet it on your third step. 


Your right arm should be swinging through the ball as you attack it. Make contact with the ball with your palm flat, like you would when high-fiving. 


Your right side should be slightly ahead of the ball as you toss it one to two feet above your head. The ball will be thrown as you take the first step. 

Take action

Then you should extend your hand out in front and serve the ball straight across the net with your hand high and out in front. To achieve a floating effect, avoid swinging your hand completely down, as you would in a topspin serve. 


How long does it take to learn the jump serve?

It varies from player to player how they learn the jump serve. The technique can be mastered within a few weeks of consistent practice and dedication, but others may take several months to master it.

Can anyone learn to jump serve, or is it only for experienced players?

It takes training and determination to learn how to jump serve, but players of all levels are capable of doing so with practice and determination. The basics of serving drills can be started by beginners, and more advanced techniques can be acquired as time progresses.

Is the jump serve riskier than a traditional serve?

Due to the increased power and spin involved in the jump serve, it can be riskier than a traditional serve. It is possible to minimize errors and increase success with the right technique and practice, however.


Practicing and dedicating time are essential to mastering the jump serve. It is possible to elevate one’s serving game by focusing on the fundamentals of technique, building strength and athletic ability, and maintaining a positive mindset.

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About Micah Drews

After playing volleyball at an international level for several years, I now work out and write for Volleyball Blaze. Creating unique and insightful perspectives through my experience and knowledge is one of my top priorities.

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