Is Beach Volleyball Court Smaller Than Indoor?

Volleyball is wildly popular, both on the beach and indoors. Both forms of the sport are widely celebrated and adored by fans all around the world. Have you ever wondered how dissimilar these two actually are from one another? Unsurprisingly, they share a number of similarities as well.

Volleyball, both indoor and beach, features a similar single-elimination tournament format to that of the NCAA’s March Madness tournament. It’s true that there are some similarities between the two forms of volleyball, but the rules and structure of the games itself are very different.

Keeping that in mind, let’s compare beach volleyball to its indoor counterpart and see what sets them apart.

Is Beach Volleyball Court Smaller Than Indoor?


Arbitration of Disagreements

It goes without saying that beach volleyball is played on sand, but you may also have observed that the court size is much different from that of an indoor volleyball court.

The beach court is actually 3.2 feet (1 metre) shorter and 6.5 feet (2 metres) narrower than a standard basketball court. Because of this, there is less room for both players to move around and for shots to stay inbounds if they are well placed.

Differential Ratings

The scoring in two variants of volleyball is different. To win a set, the indoor volleyball team needs to score 25 points, and they need to win three sets for the match to be considered a victory.

However, in beach volleyball, a team just needs to win two sets to claim victory. The winning side in a tie-breaker must have a two-point advantage over the losing team in order to claim victory.

Climate Variations

The other obvious characteristic about beach volleyball is that it is played outside, typically in the warmer months of the year. As opposed to playing inside in the comfort of air conditioning, beach volleyball players must deal with the elements.

As a result, the game is likely to be postponed if there is significant precipitation or wind. If you don’t, you still have to deal with the heat wave and keep your mind on the game. Volleyball is not nearly as pleasurable to play when the temperature outside is high.

Variations in Balls

Beach volleyball balls are distinct from their indoor counterparts. Balls used indoors can travel at substantially greater speeds since they are heavier, often smaller, and tougher. On the other hand, beach balls travel at a more leisurely pace since they are larger, less dense, and more buoyant.

The fundamental reason is because players’ mobility is hindered on sand since there is less friction than on indoor courts. Since they need time to get to the sand-based ball, each one is styled similarly but constructed differently.

Disparities in Team Size

The size of the team is a notable distinction as well. A team of beach volleyball players consists of just two people. There aren’t any backups or extra seats, though.

All of the game will be shared between the two of them. Each team in an indoor volleyball match consists of six players on the court and six more on the bench. As many as six players may be replaced during a set for indoor teams.

Dissimilarity in General Procedures

Some of the basic guidelines are modified. These details may seem inconsequential, yet they actually change the way the game is played. One such rule prohibits “dunking” or otherwise tipping the ball over the net in beach volleyball.

In addition, when playing beach volleyball, players can only use their palms, curled fingers, or straight locked fingers to send the ball over the net. Lastly, double touching is strictly prohibited in the sport of beach volleyball.

There will be significantly fewer instances of players double-touching the ball after a serve.


Although very similar, beach volleyball and indoor volleyball do have some key distinctions. Regardless, both forms of the sport are entertaining to watch and enjoy by fans all around the globe.