Defensive players need to abiltiy to extend their range in order to be most effective. The side slide is a fundamental move that will improve your defensive players range. The side slide must be executed properly in order to cover the most ground. It also must be done properly so as to reduce the risk of injury and progress into a roll.
In video clip below Coach Jim Stone form The Art of Coaching Volleyball Former Michigan State University AVCA All-American Libero Kori Moster breakdown the key components of the side slide and roll. The video was produced by The Art of Coaching Volleyball and was posted on the AVCA YouTube Channel. For more great tools that will help you develop your players and program click on the links above.
The YouTube video below has sound, so please make sure that your sound is turned on and that you have access to the site. (Some schools block access to YouTube)
The following is a summary of the key components of an effective and safe side slide.
A correct side slide begins with proper body posture. The arms should be comfortably in front of the body with the shoulders forward and the knees bent. The side slide begins by moving the feet first in the direction of the ball. The players should push off forcibly in the direction of the ball. The hips should be lower than the ball and the shoulders angled towards the middle of the court. The wrist and shoulders should be leading as the player lunges to the side. The arm will extend along the floor.
The knee on the leg that was leading should be turned towards the mid-line of the body. This is critical to avoid injuring the knee while executing the side slide. From this position the player can simply roll on to their back and then back over their shoulders and onto their feel