Officials in Volleyball

Officials in volleyball have required equipment such as uniform, shoes, whistle, and sanction cards. 

Referee Uniform and Appearance

First impression gives you a lasting impression with the teams and spectators. 

A clean neat uniform is a must. 

               Uniform for Officials in Volleyball

If you don't look like you know what you're doing, you lose credibility with spectators and coaches. 

Your appearance is definitely something you have control over. Showing up looking official will go a long way to getting respect from coaches. 

Official Uniform 

White polo-style shirt with the official designation embroidered on the sleeve. 

The shirt can be either long or short sleeved. 

It should be cleaned and ironed. 

Your officiating partner will appreciate this as much as the teams and spectators. 

Replace old shirts when they begin to turn yellow or start fading. 

First and second referee uniforms aren't required to match. For example, one referee may wear a long sleeved shirt while the second referee where's a short sleeved shirt. 

Navy Blue Pants 

The volleyball officials pants must be navy blue with a black or dark navy blue leather belt. 

You should avoid faded navy blue or black pants. These make you look unprofessional and this appearance would give a poor first impression. 

Officials in Volleyball

Shoes and Socks 

Shoes and socks should be predominantly white. They should be clean and gently worn.

If possible, avoid shoes with color logos or designs. 

To keep clean, you could avoid wearing your officiating shoes outside the facility.

Referee Equipment

Official Patch 

A referee is given a patch to wear on the right side of the shirt. This is given by USA Volleyball. 

This patch certifies you to officiate. 

This patch is attached near the upper right area of your uniform shirt. 

Some organizations require officials in volleyball to wear certified patches


The whistle is one of the most important pieces of your equipment. 

The whistle is used to call captains over for the pre-match coin toss, to start and end warm up periods, and to start and end rallies. 

The whistle is your means to get attention of the participants. 

Each official has a whistle and a lanyard. Have an extra available in case of emergencies. 

Both should be discreet in color. You don't them to be unusual looking or brightly colored that would bring special attention to them. 

Brightly colored whistles and lanyards can be used on special occasions. 

Sanction Cards 

Officials in volleyball should carry sanction cards with them. Have both red and yellow cards available in case of match control issues. 

Flipping Coin 

A flipping coin will be used during pre-match protocol. Each side of the coin should be clearly identifiable by site and name. After the toss, place the coin in the side pocket corresponding to the team that serves first. This is a great way to remember which team will serve first to start the match. 

Officials in Volleyball Flipping Coins

Watch or Timing Device 

Officials of volleyball need a watch or timing device is needed to time the warm ups, time outs, and set intervals during the match. 


The most important item is your copy of the (DCR) Domestic Competition Regulations. 

Become a student of the DCR and be able to quote passages. Be familiar with the location of rules in the book. Over time, you'll come to see that rules for volleyball are consistently miss understood. 

Net Chain 

Officials in volleyball need a net chain to measure the height of the net. Net height should meet the requirement prescribed in the official volleyball rules

Measure the net before the match. This will give you credibility before the match begins. 

Ball Gauge and Ball Pump 

The ball gauge is used to accurately measure the pressure in the game ball. If the pressure is too low, use a hand pump to add air to meet the specifications in the rules. 

Line Judge Flags 

Line judge flags aren't always provided by the tournament host. It's a good idea to have your own set handy. 

Line judges, especially junior players, communicate much more effectively when using flags. 

Volleyball Line Judge with Flags

Small Bag 

Officials in volleyball should have a small referee bag. This is a great way to carry all this equipment. 

If you enjoyed these tips and would like to keep it close to you at any time, just save this pin to your Pinterest Volleyball Training Board.

Tips for Volleyball Officials

› Officials Gear