Traverse an Obstacle Course

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One at a time, blindfolded team members are guided by their team mates through an obstacle course to the finish line. They must rely heavily on trust and communication to complete the challenge.




Time: 30 minutes

  • 2 minutes for blindfold activity Introduction
  • 3 minutes to discuss and plan
  • 20 minutes for the course (1 point awarded for every team member that completes the course).
  • 5 minutes to reviewing and debrief

Space required: Medium. Either Indoors or Outdoors

Resources:

  • 1 roll of masking tape (or use cones)
  • An assortment of items can be used as obstacles, such as chairs, buckets, desks or cones
  • 1 blindfold

Course Set Up

Create an obstacle course and mark a start and finish line with the tape (cones or rope can also be used). Items used as obstacles should be spread out and kept away from anything that could potentially cause risk to the active participant (such as walls, tree branches, nettles etc).

traverse-course

 

Blindfold Challenge Instructions

One team member is selected to navigate through the obstacle course. (Note: You may wish to demonstrate the path at this point). The team member will be blindfolded and totally dependant upon team mates to complete the course. Teams are given 3 minutes to discuss and develop a non-verbal communication that will guide the blindfolded participant safely through the obstacle course. Give blindfolded participants a maximum of 3 minutes to successfully complete the course before switching.

If a blindfolded participant touches an obstacle, they must stop and return back to the start point and switch with another person in the team. To increase the difficulty of the challenge, after each unsuccessful attempt or completion to cross, move some of the obstacles around resulting in a new course.

You can do this activity as one big group or you can split the team into smaller sub-teams and get them to race against each other (with a maximum of 3 on the course at once). The team who’s blindfolded participant completes the obstacle course first, wins the challenge and is awarded a point (similar to the blindfold retriever and sheep and shepherd exercises).

Suggested Learning Objectives:

  • Communication
  • Cooperation
  • Trust
  • Comfort Zones

Questions for Review:

  • How did you feel being blindfolded?
  • Did you discuss the challenge before attempting it? Why was this important?
  • Did everyone have opportunity to offer input or ideas?
  • Why was it important that you trust others in the team?
  • What is an obstacle? (notes: something that stops us moving forwards)
  • How do we overcome obstacles? (note: try to look for alternatives, develop a strategy and then review, adapt our approach).
  • How important was communication? What’s effective communication?
  • Why did we do the activity and what can you take away from it?

Here are some more Blindfold Challenges to give a try:

Night Trail (also known as Nightline)
Retriever Exercise
Sheep and Shepherd
Trust Walk



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