Line judges

Volleyball Only:

Line judges are to assist the referee by making calls for balls landing on or near the sideline and end line closest to them. The first line judge stands to the right of the referee on the same side of the court and the other line judge stands catty-corner to the first line judge.

High school students may serve at all levels as line judges to earn volunteer credit for your family. Before volunteering your HS student for this duty, please consider: their ability to focus on the game they are calling and the pressure involved with this duty at the upper levels.

Line judges must be in the gym 10 minutes before the start of the game in which you are serving. The referees will go over the signals with you to make sure you understand your role.


When the ball is being served:

If the line judge in charge of the line which the server is serving from waves his/her flag in the air to gain the main referee’s attention, it is called a foot fault. This occurs when the server’s foot crosses over the back line and lands within the court before the ball is contacted. This includes if any part of the player’s foot is contacting the line.

This rule makes jump serves possible. If you contact the ball before your foot hits the ground beyond the line, it is completely legal, so you can jump over the line, hit the ball, then land.

When the ball hits the ground:

If they are pointing in a downwards direction, it means that they see the ball as landing within the bounds of the court, on their line. For example, they could be looking down the long side of the court, and could be looking from one corner to the other, and the ball lands on the court side of the line, but outside of the far line which is not that judge’s call.

If they are pointing in an upwards direction, it means that the ball has landed outside of the bounds of the court, which includes the lines. So if any part of the ball lands on any part of the line, it is considered in.

If they are holding their hand and flag in a “T” position, or run one hand over the fingertips of the other, while holding them up in the air, it means that a defending player has contacted the ball while it was in flight. This is important, because if a defending player contacts the ball, and it lands out of bounds, it is the opposing team’s point.