Get your volleyball basics right with Gretchen Ho and SMDC
Gretchen Ho
Gretchen Ho enjoying the leisure and sports amenities at SMDC’s Grass Residences

Get your volleyball basics right with Gretchen Ho and SMDC

Have you always wanted to learn how to play volleyball but didn’t know where to start? We have good news for you:  SM Development Corporation (SMDC) has tapped former volleyball star-turned-TV host Gretchen Ho to teach you the basics of the Olympic sport. The first episode of the series shows Gretchen demonstrating six important skills you need to play and enjoy the game of volleyball.

Gretchen Ho
Woman-in-action and former volleyball star of The Ateneo Lady Eagles, Gretchen Ho teaches the basics of volleyball in the latest episode of SMDC The Good Fit

1. Warm Up

“Volleyball is a full-body workout so we need to prepare every part of our body before we play,” Gretchen says as she stretches at the amenities area of SMDC’s Grass Residences with her former coach Leo “Ato” Toyco of the Ateneo Lady Eagles.

2. Receiving

The second lesson from Gretchen is receiving or the “volley” part of volleyball.  Her advice is to bend your knees, one foot forward, the arms stretched 45 degrees from your body, with hands clasped and thumbs pointing downward.

Receive the ball with your forearm, not your knuckles or elbow pit. “Dapat may forward motion at nakababa yung hips para kontrolado. Abangan mo yung bola sa ilalim,” Gretchen advises. 

SMDC3. Setting

Your fingers should be in a triangle position when setting the ball. “Dapat hindi sumasayad yung palms,” advises Coach Ato. 

Practice tossing the ball upwards, getting your power from your knees. “Dapat hindi nagro-roll yung bola. Ang mahalaga sabay yung kamay at yung tuhod,” says Gretchen. 


4. Spiking

“Sa spiking, kailangan matamaan mo yung bola sa tamang area, at yung approach mo dapat tama rin,” Gretchen points out.

For right handers, the movement starts with the left foot taking a step forward, then followed by a swing of the arms from the back to the front and up as you jump, with the right hand spiking the ball downwards at the peak of your jump.


“Aangat ka, tapos papalo sa itaas, then follow through. If you can do it in one motion, the better. Just imagine yourself in the air doing this motion,” Gretchen says as she hits the ball.

5. Blocking  

Blocking is your defensive move against your opponent’s attacks. You do it by raising both of your arms and jumping as your opponent launches an attack with a spike.

“Pinakaimportante sa blocking ay timing,” says Gretchen. “Kailangan mong sundan ng tamang timing yung spike ng kalaban for you to be able to block the ball. Make sure the ball goes to the other side, and make sure you don’t touch the net kasi bawal yun.”

6. Serving

The serve is the most important skill you need to learn because it starts the play. And a good serve can immediately earn you a point if your opponent fails to receive it. 

There are two ways to serve — underhand or overhand.

To do the underhand serve, hold the ball with your left hand (if you’re right handed), then swing your right arm from back to front. Release the ball with your left hand and hit it with your swinging right arm with a force that should get the ball over the net. 

For an overhead serve, hold the ball with your left hand and throw it upwards while your right hand hits it like a spike. 

The Good Tip

Gretchen’s final advice or Good Tip is to practice these skills regularly until you master them. “Repetition lang. Build on those skills until you get it right. Kasi yun ang foundation ng isang magaling na volleyball player,” she says.

With many of us living fast paced lives like Gretchen, it’s always important to remember to balance the demands of our work and personal life by making time for ourselves to do the things we love and to also take care of our mental and physical health. 

Gretchen Ho
Gretchen Ho enjoying the leisure and sports amenities at SMDC’s Grass Residences

In support of living a healthier and well balanced lifestyle, SMDC Residences provides its residents with indoor and outdoor areas where they can play various sports such as volleyball, basketball, swimming, or even running. 

In the coming episodes of The Good Fit Volleyball, Gretchen will teach you how to level up your game. Watch the first episode here