Team Building Activities for High School Athletes

Instructor: Christopher Muscato

Chris has a master's degree in history and teaches at the University of Northern Colorado.

Team building is crucial for athletes, who need to learn to trust each other, cooperate, and work together. These activities will give you some options for improving teamwork with your athletes.

Team Building

Team building can be helpful in any high school setting, as students need to learn to work collaboratively and cooperatively. However, for athletes, there is an exceptionally clear prerogative to develop teamwork. The following activities are designed to help high school athletes think and function as a team, become more comfortable working together, and have some fun in an interactive and physical setting. These activities are not intended to compliment any specific sport or athletic style, but can be easily adapted if need be.

High School Team Building Activities for Athletes

The Melting Iceberg

Divide the class/team into medium-sized groups. Use long ropes to outline a series of wide circles, and then ask the members of each group to all stand inside one circle. Tell them that this is their iceberg and they all have to stay within the boundaries or they'll fall into the ocean. After they have arranged themselves, slowly adjust the circles, making them smaller and smaller. You can also make them uneven as they shrink, not just keeping them as circles but having random parts jut out or in. As the iceberg melts, students will have to get more creative about how they fit. Any student that touches outside the line has fallen into the ocean and must wait on the sidelines. The team with the most people still on their iceberg at the end wins.

  • Materials: Long ropes or similar objects

All-It Tag

For this simple team building activity, you are going to play a game of tag (or any variation of tag) over a large space. The catch is that in this game, every single person is it. If a student gets tagged, they must kneel down until someone else un-tags them, at which point, they resume the game. The interesting thing about this will be to watch if students start to build informal alliances, partnerships, or teams without being told to do so.

  • Materials: Available open space, flag football ribbons/belts if desired

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