The pancake in volleyball is a crucial defensive move used to prevent the ball from hitting the ground. It requires skill and precision, as players use their hand to create a flat surface and slide the ball on.
Although it has a low success rate, a successful pancake earns admiration and respect.
This article delves into the importance of the pancake, when and why it should be used, how to execute it effectively, and the difference between a dig and a pancake.
- The pancake is a last resort in volleyball that is rarely successful.
- It is used when there is a surprise tip or a net serve that drops on your side of the net.
- The pancake is executed by diving forward with your non-dominant foot and reaching out your dominant hand with the palm facing down.
- Practice and teaching the pancake should be done at game speed to increase success and reduce the risk of injury.
The Importance of the Pancake in Volleyball
When executed successfully, the pancake can be a game-changing play that earns the admiration and respect of teammates, coaches, and fans alike.
The pancake is a last resort in volleyball, used when the ball is out of reach and a normal dive won’t make it. It takes guts to attempt a pancake, but when it works, it can win the hearts of your teammates, the respect of your coach, and the awe of your fans.
To execute a pancake, start in your defensive stance and step forward with your non-dominant foot. Let your body fall towards the ground and drive yourself forward before hitting the ground. Reach out your dominant hand in a one-armed superman dive, keeping your palm down.
Practice the pancake at game speed to increase the likelihood of success and lower the chance of injury.
When and Why to Use the Pancake Technique
To maximize their chances of saving a ball that is dropping fast and out of reach, players may have to resort to the pancake technique. The pancake is used in rare situations where the ball is so far out of reach that a normal dive won’t make it. It is often employed when there’s a surprise tip or a net serve that drops on your side of the net.
When there’s no way to cover that much ground and the ball is dropping quickly, the pancake becomes the last resort. To execute the pancake, players start in their defensive stance, step forward with their non-dominant foot, and let their body fall further toward the ground if needed. They then drive themselves forward, reaching out their dominant hand with the palm facing down to make a one-armed superman dive.
Mastering the Execution of the Pancake Dive
Players can perfect the execution of the pancake dive by practicing the technique consistently and simulating game-like scenarios. By practicing at game speed, players increase the likelihood of success and reduce the risk of injury.
Teaching the pancake in progression allows players to take smaller steps and gradually build their skills. One way to practice is by having one player drop the ball to their partner nearby, focusing on pancake contact. As players become more comfortable, they can separate and practice tracking and consistent contact with lobbed balls.
To make the practice as realistic as possible, coaches can simulate a tip from the net. Mastering the pancake dive requires dedication and repetition, but it can be a valuable defensive tool in volleyball.
Effective Teaching and Practice Methods for the Pancake
Coaches can enhance the effectiveness of their teaching and practice methods for the pancake by incorporating game-like scenarios and emphasizing consistent contact. To achieve this, coaches can:
Create game-like situations: Coaches can simulate game scenarios that require players to react quickly and execute a pancake. This helps players develop the necessary skills and decision-making abilities under pressure.
Emphasize consistent contact: Coaches should focus on teaching players how to make consistent and controlled contact with the ball during a pancake. This involves teaching proper hand positioning, body alignment, and timing to increase the chances of successfully executing a pancake.
Gradual progression: Coaches can start by having players practice pancake dives with a partner, gradually increasing the difficulty and distance of the tosses. This progression allows players to develop their skills in a controlled and systematic manner.
Realistic practice: Coaches should aim to make the practice sessions as realistic as possible. This can be achieved by simulating game-like situations, such as having players receive a tip from the net, to prepare them for the unpredictability of real matches.
Understanding the Difference Between a Dig and a Pancake
Understanding the difference between a dig and a pancake can help players improve their defensive skills in the game.
While both moves are used to prevent the ball from hitting the floor, there are key distinctions.
A dig is a defensive hit that is executed after a downward attack, requiring players to anticipate the area the attacking team is hitting to and be ready to save the ball.
On the other hand, a pancake is a last resort move used when the ball is dropping fast and is out of reach for a normal dive. It involves sliding the hand palm-down on the ground to keep the ball from hitting the floor.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Are Some Common Mistakes to Avoid When Attempting a Pancake in Volleyball?
When attempting a pancake in volleyball, there are some common mistakes to avoid.
One mistake is not getting low enough to the ground before attempting the pancake, which can result in the ball bouncing off the hand rather than being cleanly scooped up.
Another mistake is not keeping the palm down and facing the ground, as this can cause the ball to roll off the hand instead of being controlled.
It’s important to practice proper technique and positioning to increase the chances of a successful pancake.
Can the Pancake Technique Be Used in Beach Volleyball as Well?
The pancake technique can also be used in beach volleyball. In this variation of the sport, players may encounter surprise tips or low serves that require a quick reaction.
When the ball is out of reach and dropping fast, the pancake can be a valuable tool to prevent it from hitting the ground. By practicing the pancake at game speed and simulating realistic scenarios, beach volleyball players can improve their chances of successfully executing this defensive move.
Are There Any Specific Drills or Exercises That Can Help Improve Pancake Skills?
There are specific drills and exercises that can help improve pancake skills.
Players can practice the pancake at game speed to increase the likelihood of success and lower the chance of getting hurt.
The pancake can be taught in progression, taking smaller progressive steps if needed.
One drill involves one player dropping the ball to their partner nearby to practice the pancake contact.
Another drill is to separate partners a few steps and have the tosser lob the ball for the receiver to track and practice consistent contact.
Simulating a tip from the net can also make the practice more realistic.
How Can a Player Determine if They Are in the Right Position to Attempt a Pancake?
A player can determine if they’re in the right position to attempt a pancake by assessing the situation on the court. They should consider the speed and trajectory of the ball, as well as their own positioning and reaction time.
If the ball is dropping fast and out of reach, and a normal dive won’t make it, then attempting a pancake may be the best option. It requires quick thinking and the ability to anticipate the ball’s path accurately.
Is There a Specific Hand Placement or Technique That Should Be Used When Executing a Pancake?
There is a specific hand placement and technique that should be used when executing a pancake in volleyball. The player should reach out their dominant hand in a one-armed superman dive, keeping their palm down facing the ground.
This allows for the ball to make contact with the hand and slide along the ground, resembling a pancake. By using this technique, players increase their chances of successfully making a pancake and keeping the ball in play.