What Is A Half Volley In Pickleball?

You might get confused after hearing the word half volley in pickleball. However, some players might already realize it as a type of volleying. While half volley is very different as compared to volley in pickleball. Then what is a half volley in pickleball?

In simple words, when a player wants to make paddle contact with a ball instantly as it hit the ground is called a half volley in pickleball. But as it’s looking very complicated for you.

Hence I’d like to explain it in more detail so you can easily understand.

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What Is A Half Volley In Pickleball And Its Important?

The half volley is also called a short hop. When you’re playing pickleball and you get the ball deep return to your feet.

At this time, you immediately hit the ball as it bounces and before it gets to its normal space is known as pickleball half-volley. 

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It’s one of the hard shots to make in pickleball. As well as it’s very helpful when you want to prevent yourself from overhead smashes or hard shots.

Picklers usually hit the half-volley when the opponent wants to pin you to the baseline by making deep services to the returner.

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In such a situation, half volley is the best choice for you to return the ball cleverly without giving any chance to the server by hitting you with tough shots.

Moreover, once you failed to return the ball low to your opponent, you’ll be smashed for so many hard shots until you lose the point or take yourself near the net. 

Normally, a short hop is considered as a defensive shot. However, if you master it well, you could use offensive shots as well.

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How To Play Half Volley In Pickleball?

I’ll tell a few very easy tips to hit a good half volley. These tips are what I do when I’m attacked at my feet by the opponent.

Sometimes, you may feel pain in your back especially but with regular practice, I believe you’ll become great at making half volley.

  • To make a half volley, you should be very low. The more you go down the easy you’ll hit the half-volley shot.
  • Try your best to plant your feet very stable so that you can easily make a half volley.
  • Don’t go for ball swinging. If your competitor makes such shots so you’d not be able for making the swing. Hence, I recommend you skip ball swinging.
  • While making contact with the ball, have the paddle very soft and make a very slow shot. Because you’re just going to return the ball just over the net into your opponent’s non-volley zone. Learn Everything Related To Pickleball Kitchen Rule.
  • In some cases, you get a very fast shot where you don’t have time to go down. Since you should give your best by making a half volley from your own position.

These given tips are some of my personal experience tips that you can use to improve your half-volley. It can really affect your game while playing at an aggressive level.

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Difference Between A Volley And A Half Volley

Volley and half volley are two very essential shots strategies in pickleball. However, there are some players, who become ambiguous by making variations between these two shots.

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To make it plain for you, I’ll disclose these both separately in very easy language.

1. Volley

Volley is a type of shot in which players hit the ball without letting it bounce on the ground. However, there are some rules while making a volley in pickleball. 

If you’re willing to know about volleying then I’d recommend giving a look at what is a volley in pickleball.

2. Half Volley

As I mentioned before, a shot to hit the ball immediately after it touches the ground surface is called a half volley.

The big difference between these two shots is that in volley you don’t let the ball touch the ground. While in half volley you hit the ball after it bounces on the ground.


To be a professional pickleball player, you should know different kinds of shots as well as know when to make this shot and then don’t. Same as that, half volley is also one of the best shot in pickleball especially if you’re playing at a competitive level.

However, it needs a little time and practice to become better at half volleying. Once you master it, you’ll be nominated for your playing style in pickleball.

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Q1. What is a half volley shot?

Hitting the shot after the ball bounce on the court surface and before it gets back to its normal space position is known as half volley shot or shop hop.

Q2. What is the most important shot in pickleball?

The most important shot is very dependent on a player skill level. Moreover, the best shot in pickleball is the third drop shot and half volley as well.

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