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Rules & Guidelines

Rules & Guidelines

In this section, you will find a variety of documents outlining the rules and guidelines set forth by Volleyball Canada.

Volleyball Rulebooks

Indoor Volleyball Rulebook

Published by Volleyball Canada, this annual publication has all the up to date rules for playing Indoor Volleyball in Canada. It is a necessity for all referees, coaches, players and parents.

To order the 2023-2024 Rulebook at a price of $12.50, please visit our E-Shop.

An electronic copy may be found here.

Please see here for the 2023-2024 Rulebook Changes


Beach Volleyball Rulebook

Volleyball Canada does not publish a Beach Volleyball Rulebook, therefore, other than some specific rules (see below), it follows the FIVB Beach Volleyball Rulebook.

The FIVB Official Beach Volleyball Rules 2021-2024 will be used for the 2021-2024s Beach Volleyball seasons with the exception of the Volleyball Canada Variations.

Volleyball Canada Rule Variations

  • 1.1.1 For VC 12U competitions, court dimensions are 7m x 7m each side.
  • 1.3.3 For VC competitions width of lines is 2.5 - 8.0cm
  • 2.4 Net Heights (in meters)
Age Groups Female Male
14U 2.15 2.20
15U 2.20


16U 2.24


17U - Senior 2.24


  • 4.1.3 For VC competitions coaching is allowed only for age groups 16U and younger and University events. Coaching may take place only during time outs and intervals between sets.
  • 5.1.5 For VC competitions numbers are not required.
  • 10.3.3 For VC competitions:

Service Rules

The scorer must indicate the proper server order and correct any incorrect server. A scorekeeper's errors in service order are to be corrected when the fault is discovered, with no penalty to either team.

A service order fault is punished by a loss of rally or points scored if a team, prior to their service, has been correctly notified by the scorer, second referee or first referee, that they are out of order. If it is possible to establish the exact time of the fault, the points scored after the fault are cancelled for that team.

First Contact Rule (Volleyball Canada, 12U, 13U, 14U, 15U)

Receiving serve or first contact with an overhand motion using the fingers (volleying/setting) is not permitted, regardless of the quality of the contact.

The first referee will use the "double contact" signal to indicate this infraction. Exception: Hard driven ball. 

Second Contact Rule (Volleyball Canada 12U, 13U, 14U, 15U)

On a team's second hit, contacting the ball more than once with fingers (double contact) in a single attempt to play the ball is not a fault if the ball is next legally contacted by a teammate.

Serve Receive Rule (Volleyball Canada 12U, 13U, 14U, 15U)

In sets 1 and 2 of a match, up until the technical timeout, the last player to serve for their team (at the moment of service hit by the opposing team) must be positioned closer to the right sideline than their teammate. These court positions must be maintained (for service reception) until the team regains the right to serve.

Sitting Volleyball Rulebook

Sitting volleyball is governed by the World Organization Volleyball for Disabled (WOVD). The WOVD has adapted the FIVB (International Volleyball Federation) rules for use in sitting volleyball.   

Official WOVD Sitting Volleyball Rules

Referee Guidelines

The Volleyball Canada Officials Committee publishes on an annual basis the Referee Guidelines for Referees in Canada 2023 - 2024. The goal of this document is to standardize the interpretation of the rules, the mechanics of the Referees, and the game procedures used in the match throughout Canada. This document, along with the Rule Book, is to be the guide for Canadian Referees in the consistent application of the rules.

Each referee is responsible for downloading the Guidelines for referees and become familiar with its content prior to starting the volleyball season.

If you have any questions, please email rbunyan@volleyball.ca.

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