|Type of activity:|
12 - 50
30 - 60 Minutes
Communication, Trust, Teamwork
A short exercise that forces small teams to communicate when they can’t see one another or their progress. The challenge is to take a length of rope and lay it out on the ground to make a perfect square. Throughout the task all team members must wear blindfolds.
Check that the space you intend to use is safe i.e flat, free of furniture and glass etc. If the group size exceeds 12 consider running the activity with several teams at the same time.
Equipment and Layout
Provide a suitable length of rope 10 meters is ideal
Running The Activity
- Give each participant a blindfold.
- Explain that this is a task that requires effective verbal communication.
- Position the participants in the area where the activity will take place.
- Ask them to lower their blind folds over their eyes and turn around until you say stop (allow them to rotate a sufficient amount so that they become a little disorientated).
- Silently lay the coiled rope within reach of one of the participants
- Explain that you have positioned the rope on the floor and that on your command they must locate the rope and work together to position the rope in the shape of a perfect square on the floor
- During the exercise be prepared to intervene if a participant could hurt themselves
- Allow the group to say when they have finished, if everyone is in agreement ask them to remove their blindfolds
- Congratulate success or ask them what they might do differently if there is still room for improvement
- If required give the group a second opportunity to complete the challenge
The most effective way measure the rope for this task is to fold the rope in half twice, creating four equal lengths.
Reviews and Conclusions
Ask how it felt to be asked to carry out the task blind? Ask who were the leaders?
Ask how each participant’s confidence felt at the beginning of the task?
If the group did not manage to disentangle themselves, you can discuss the following: Was it an impossible task?
Were the group not given long enough – would they have succeeded if given another 5/10 minutes?
Would they do it differently next time around?
Expand on the above to identify what led to rises and dips in confidence.
Frostbite is a more complex ‘blind task’ in which the role of leader rotates so that all participants experience being the leader.
For further suggestions on follow-up and other team activities, go to www.freshtracks.co.uk or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Download the Blindfold Ropesquare Teambuilding PDF here.