In youth sports, you can never underestimate the power of togetherness and unity. Part of being a team is learning how to work together, encourage each other and have fun while doing it. Here are some things that can help build a bond between team members that extends to the field, court or gym.
Here are 7 team building activities for youth sports to try this season
- Tug-o-war: This is an old tried and true option that forces youth athletes to work together toward a common goal. It’s an obvious option when it comes to building unity in a group.
- Get to Know You Ball: This is as simple as it sounds and requires minimal planning. Have your participants stand in a circle, toss a ball to each member and then present them with a new question. “What’s your favorite movie?” “What’s your favorite pizza topping?” It’s simple, easy and helps you learn a little bit more about your teammates in the process.
- Relay races: This is something that you can set up depending on the amount of players and the type of environment you are playing in.
- Scavenger hunt: Think The Amazing Race but then scale it down for youth athletes. This requires a bit of planning and the help of a few parents, but it can be a good way to create memories for teammates beyond this season.
- Wheelbarrow race: This is a go-to exercise for team building. It’s an engaging, fun and extremely active way to build team unity. It forces team members to work and move together, which can prove to be essential when you transfer that to the playing field.
- Blanket ball or blanket volleyball: Divide your group into two and hand out a large blanket to both groups. Each member grabs a side, and they have to launch the ball over a volleyball net (you can also create a makeshift net using a jump rope) and then catch it in the other sheet. Teamwork and communication is an important part of success in this activity, and that translates directly to any sport you’ll want to play.
- The Real Thing: If you live in an area where you could safely attend a live sporting event, then this could be a great opportunity for a team outing. You can even invite parents and siblings and make it a family outing for the entire team. This is a great way to build friendships within your team and also give them a learning experience as they prepare to play a sport themselves.
There are many options out there for team building activities, and the thing to keep in mind with all of these is to make sure each athlete is having fun and enjoying themselves in the process. That alone will help create an ideal team-building environment.