In this team building activity, the aim is for everyone on the team to catch a ping pong ball in a cup. The challenge is that the ball must bounce once in the cup before it is caught. The activity is completed when all members of the team have each bounced and caught one ping pong ball in their cup.
- Ping pong balls
- 2 small baskets or boxes to hold the ping pong balls
- Plastic cups
- Masking tape
Space Required: Medium. Indoors or outdoors
Group Size: 10 – 30 participants
Total Time: 30 minutes
- 10 minutes to brief and setup
- 10 minutes for the activity
- 10 minutes to review and debrief
- Using the masking tape, set up two parallel lines on the ground about 5m apart. Mark the lines “A” and “B”.
- You may need to appoint someone to “collect” stray ping pong balls during the activity.
Running the Activity
- Explain the activity: the aim is for everyone on the team to catch a ping pong ball in a cup. The challenge is that the ball must bounce once (and only once!) in the cup before it is caught. The activity is completed when all members of the team have each bounced and caught one ping pong ball in their cup.
- The team has to assign one person to be the pitcher. The pitcher then stands behind Line A while everyone else stands behind Line B.
- The pitcher is given the basket/box of ping pong balls. His/her job is to ‘pitch’ the balls to the teammate across from them. If the ball bounces in the cup more than once or if the teammate is unable to catch the ball, the pitcher has to continue ‘pitching’ until the teammate has successfully completed the task.
- Once the teammate has bounced the ball once in the cup and caught it, he/she moves out of the way to allow for the next person to complete the task. The activity ends when everyone in the team has successfully completed the task.
- If you have more time, challenge the group by timing them and getting them to better their time in a second attempt.
- The ping pong ball must bounce once (and only once!) in the cup before it is caught.
- Participants must stay behind their respective lines at all times.
- If there is more than one team participating, you can make it a challenge to see which team can complete the challenge first.
- Increase the distance between Line A and Line B in order to make the activity more challenging.
Suggested Learning Outcomes
Suggested questions to ask:
- How well did you communicate during the challenge?
- Why was cooperation important during this challenge?
- How did it feel when you failed to bounce and catch the ping pong ball on the first try?
- What could you have done better as a team?
- What did you learn from the challenge?