HomePickleball3 Non-Volley Zone Myths Debunked


3 Non-Volley Zone Myths Debunked — 13 Comments

  1. How about clarifying for me when your momentum carries you into the NVZ? I read a discussion recently about if a ball bounced beyond the NVZ line and while returning the ball your momentum carries you into the NVZ, that this was not a fault. I had always understood that after you hit a ball, you could not enter the NVZ. Even when it appeared the point was over.

    • After hitting a volley you cannot touch the NVZ. It doesn’t matter if the ball you hit was so terrific that your opponent couldn’t return it, or returns it into the net. You must re-establish your position outside the NVZ (i.e. both feet must make contact with the court outside the NVZ) after hitting a volley. Otherwise, you have incurred a fault.

      • The question asked by Chuck W is about entering the NVZ after returning a “ball bounced beyond the NVZ line.” If the ball is beyond the line (i.e. not in the NVZ) then Rules 9e and 9f apply: there is no fault because there was no “volley.” Did I miss something?

    • Chuck W. I re-read your question and you are asking about entering the NVZ after hitting a groundstroke or dink (i.e. not a volley). You are free to enter the NVZ at any time when a ball has bounced. Rule 9.E. says: A player may step on the non-volley line or enter the non-volley zone at any time except when that player is volleying the ball. There is no violation if your partner returns the ball while you are standing in the non-volley zone. A player may enter the non-volley zone before or after returning any ball that bounces.

  2. Can I grab my partner after she has hit a volley and looks like she may stumble into the kitchen..keeping her from stepping in??

  3. So if the non volley zone is two dimensional, can the paddle cross the line after a volley if both feet are outside the non volley zone? I believe it is a fault if a foot steps into the non volley after a volley return due to momentum and is a continueing action.

    • The paddle or any part of the player’s body can be above the NVZ without penalty. A fault only occurs when a player, anything they are or were wearing, or their paddle touches the court surface. You are correct…the player cannot touch the NVZ before (for example stepping on the NVZ before hitting an overhead) or after a volley (for example, momentum). After touching the NVZ, a player must reestablish his/her position outside the NVZ (placing both feet on the court outside the NVZ) before they may hit a volley.

  4. When I first started playing a year or so ago I was told that I could not return a dink within the kitchen with a “hard hit.” Meaning, if the ball bounced in the kitchen was high enough I could not step in and smash it back. I read and re-read the rule book several times and never could I find any rule stating that a smash was illegal from within the kitchen but locally that was what the existing player were abiding with. So, can someone return with a smash (hard hit) from within the NVZ? Thanks,

    • This is a great example of a NVZ myth. You can return a ball hard or soft from the NVZ, as long as you let it bounce first. OF course, I would direct the smash away from a player or at their feet.

  5. What if you are at the kitchen line and you hit a volley shot( no bounce and your foot is obviously past the kitchen line but your foot is at a angle so the toe part of the shoe is up and the heel part is touching ourside of the kitchen. Whats the call then? And can a referee really see that well fast enough to make a good call in that circumstance. Dave C

    • Most of us wear court shoes that curve up slightly at the toe. It is possible to be hovering above the line without touching it. But admittedly this is a very tough call for a referee.