League Rules

League Rules

MHVL Indoor Volleyball Rules 2023/2024

(In addition to the VB Canada rules found at link below)


Waivers: All players and participants must sign a waiver before playing their first game.

New Subs can be used at any time but must sign a waiver before playing, it is the team captains responsibility to secure and submit this completed waiver to MHVL before the start of the match.

Once a player has been added to a roster they CANNOT sub for a different team within their league, even if the team is in a different tier. Max 14 players per roster.

All players must be over 18 years old and cannot be part of a High School or college team for the current season.

Tie Breakers:

2 team tie - when all teams play all teams - tie breaker is the head-to-head match winner
2 team tie - when all teams do not play all teams - tie breaker is previous tier ranking (whomever was the higher ranked team)
3 or more team tie - tie breaker is previous tier ranking

Disclaimer: The below rules are the default rules for the MHVL. If both teams agree before the match to alter these rules then teams may operate under their agreed upon rules.

Women’s and Coed League:

Sportsmanship Goal: Providing a safe and fun environment for the players. Unsportsmanlike conduct will not be tolerated.

1) Please call all personal faults or faults of your team. If a discrepancy or disagreement arises, re-serve the ball. If faults continue see rule #2d.

2) Conduct:

2a) No swearing directly at another player, spectators or officials.

2b) No intentional acts of violence (pushing, shoving or intentional physical contact)

2c) No verbal threats or comments to instigate an altercation with any person. The player will be suspended immediately from play, and further game suspensions may follow and will not necessarily include or be limited to the player.

2d) If at any time during a game there are any concerns with the opposing team players, the team captain will address the issue with the other team captain during a break or halftime. If the issue has not been resolved by the end of the game please forward any concerns to your League Director mhvlladies@gmail.com or mhvlcoed@gmail.com

3) GHOST RULE is: If a team decides to play with 5 players, the "ghost" (non-existing player) will start off the match in position six. When the "ghost" rotates into position one to serve, the team forfeits their serve, a point is awarded to the opposing team and the other team takes possession of the ball to serve. The rotational order of the six-player lineup must be maintained including when the "ghost" rotates into the front row (positions 2, 3, 4,). Thus only 2 players would be permitted to attack in the front row when the "ghost" occupies the front row rotations (positions 2, 3, 4,). This process repeats itself for the duration of the match or until the sixth player arrives to play and then at that point in time a substitution is immediately made to sub-out the "ghost" for the active player no matter the rotation.

4) All matches will be a best of 3 (unless otherwise specified) with a cap at 27 and 17.

5) Unlimited substitutions as per VBC rules 15.6.3-4

6) Start the game with paper, rock, scissors for the choice of serve or side. “Nothing beats rock”

7) League players are asked to assist in setting up and putting away of nets.

8) Teams are expected to bring at least one volleyball for play. If there is a dispute on which ball to use, each team will select their ball of choice for one game. For the third game, the team who wins the coin toss will have their choice of either: Ball, side, or service.

9) Players must be on the roster and have played regularly throughout the session in order to compete in that session’s playoffs/finals unless deemed to be a qualified substitute.

10) Defaults:

10a) If a team does not show up for league play, they will default all matches scheduled for that night of play.

10b) If a team is not present at the scheduled start time, this is considered a default of the first game in the match.

10c) If a team is not present 15 minutes after the clock has started, the second game and match are now forfeit.

10d) If you are unable to field a team for a match, please contact your opposing team as soon as possible to inform them your team will not make it that night.


For coed net height we will use the 5th line at the highest hole setting for the new (black) YMCA poles.

Indoor 6's
maximum 3 males, minimum 2 females
minimum players: 5 (with 1x ghost player) to avoid default, possible combinations as listed below.

For example:
6 females
5 females and 1 male
4 females and 2 males
3 females and 3 males
5 females
4 females and 1 male
3 females and 2 males
2 females and 3 males


If you cannot make your game(s) you MUST contact the teams you are scheduled to play informing them as early as possible. A no show with a no call will result in warning, a 2nd no show/no call may result in a suspension or removal from the league.

All matches are best of 3 to 21,21,15. Unless otherwise agreed upon players will switch sides on multiples of 7 in games to 21 and multiples of 5 in games to 15.

For the 2024 Season MHVL will follow the FIVB rules found here:


With the below exceptions/clarifications:

No Setting a serve. You can set everything else.

No screening a serve, if the receiving team asks you to move, you must oblige.

When playing 2's (Monday) a block counts as a touch. Coed 3s (Wednesday) or Coed 4s (Thursday) a block does NOT count as a touch. In 2's the first hit after the block may be executed by any player, including the one who has touched the ball during the block.

Common rules that lead to confusion:


13.2.3 A player completes an attack-hit using an open-handed finger action or if using finger tips that are not rigid and together.

No open hand tips. Cobra/Moose knuckle, closed fist, and Knife hand are acceptable. To avoid confusion, a roll shot is always acceptable.

13.2.5 A player completes an attack-hit using an overhand pass which has a trajectory not perpendicular to the line of the shoulders.

If setting the ball over the net, the ball has to travel in the direction that the shoulders are "pointing." If the player is attempting to set a teammate and the ball goes over the net without the teammate touching the ball then that is a fault and the defending team gets the point and ball. If a player is attempting to set a teammate and the wind carries the ball over the net then the play is valid and must be defended against. If any doubt on wind then this play will be reserved.

14.3 BLOCKING WITHIN THE OPPONENT’S SPACE In blocking, the player may place his/her hands and arms beyond the net, provided that this action does not interfere with the opponent’s play. Thus, it is not permitted to touch the ball beyond the net before an opponent has executed an attack hit.

A player cannot block a ball over the net before the 3rd contact. Once the 3rd contact has been executed or the ball breaks the plane of the net a block may be executed.

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