Serving is the one skill in volleyball which is not at all reliant upon the actions of another player. It is completely in the control of the individual. In that way, it is generally the easiest one to develop to a reasonable level. For a new volleyball player, simply getting the ball in the court consistently is a major hurdle, but once that is overcome, being able to place serves with accuracy is the next challenge.
Getting the volleyball to go where you want when serving comes down to one simple, but critical thing – consistency. There are two aspects of this consistency. One is the toss. The other is the ball contact. Put simply, if you cannot toss the ball in the right spot and strike it properly each time, you will struggle to serve the ball where you intend.
Additionally, accuracy is almost always well-served by being pointed at your target. That means face your target from the beginning and make sure all of your motion – your step, your toss, and your armswing – all move in that line. When all of those things are moving in the same direction, the ball is much more likely to go that way.
Alas, there is no magic bullet for becoming an accurate server. It all comes down to repetition. Any drill or game involving serving is one which allows you to work on consistent tosses and ball striking and having everything moving on the line of your target. You just need to make sure you focus on those key points each time you toe the service line.
That said, there are many ways to train accurate serving. Most serving drills can be adapted to require serves into certain areas of the court. For example, rather than doing a simple 10-in-a-row in the court type of drill, you could require that all serves be in one designated half of the court. Naturally, as accuracy improves, the target zones should be made smaller.
Being a really good server, though, isn’t just about being able to hit targets. It’s about being able to put the ball where you want it when called upon. That means having the ability to hit any target at any time. This is critical in trying to take advantage of weaknesses in your opposition’s serve reception and giving your team an advantage. An excellent way to work on this sort of situational accuracy is in drill and game situations where targets are indicated in some fashion (like a coach call) prior to service.
What accurate serving comes down to is the same as with most things – repetition. Given the proper focus and intention, any drill can be effectively used to develop accuracy.