Fun Group Activities (Ropes Courses)

Looking for fun group activities with a bit of adrenalin? These videos might inspire you to try a high ropes course.

They will explain what this team building activity is like better than I ever could.

After the videos, you’ll find:

  • an introductory article about ropes courses

  • my personal tips and experience

  • answers to some frequently asked questions

Ropes Course Videos

I’ve chosen videos which are as information rich and light on ‘advertising’ as I could find.

One is by an Australian television program, the other by an English student who films herself performing “challenges” in the UK and around the world.

My Story and Experience with a High Ropes Course

It’s probably just as well I didn’t see those videos above before I signed up for the high ropes course I did several years ago!

I used to be a member of a local outdoor club. We went bushwalking on the weekends and the club arranged lots of other fun group activities.

One of these was a half-day high ropes course at Mt Glorious, in the hinterland behind where I live in Brisbane, Australia.

I only had a vague idea of what I was getting myself in for. Of course I knew I’d have to be up high … it was called a ‘High Ropes Course’ after all! But I’m scared of heights, so I might not have signed up if I’d seen those videos above!

Besides finding some of the activities mildly terrifying, I remember a great sense of exhilaration and achievement when I conquered my fears.

So my first tip for fun group activities like a ropes courses is perhaps not to give all of your group too many details in advance! Or your participation rate could drop way down!

But please do make sure the ropes course program you choose has options for people who really don’t want to participate, or who would find the high ropes course too physically demanding.

An Introductory Article to Ropes Courses

The article below provides a great overview of the different types of ropes courses and their team building benefits. It is provided courtesy of the Corporate Learning Institute.

Ropes Course: Adventures Way of Team Bonding

What do you think of when you hear about a ropes course?

What about an adventure ropes course?

If you are thinking that it is nothing more than people walking on a rope several feet in the air, than you would be greatly mistaken. Ropes courses are really fun group activities, and an excellent way to bond a team together and build the trust necessary for any organization to thrive.

There are many different ropes course activities and programs that can be used and utilized for any situation. Furthermore, an adventure ropes course can be for almost anyone, regardless of age or physical condition, and can be a powerful learning experience. 

There are two different kinds of ropes courses:

  • the high ropes course and
  • the low ropes course.

Both kinds of ropes courses can involve many different programs and fun group activities.

A low ropes course can consist of many team challenges for your members while simultaneously challenging them to work together to solve the various problems put in front of them, a skill useful for any organization. This kind of ropes course is also excellent for any members of the group who aren’t comfortable with heights, but wish to still wish to work together as part of the group, as the entire course is right on the ground.

The high ropes course is the ultimate experience in team bonding. The team members will learn to trust in themselves and each other as they navigate a course 30 feet in the air. The members of the group will learn valuable lessons in trust, problem solving, risk management, and decision making. If done correctly, many of the participants will also gain a better understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of the other members of the group, as well as themselves. Furthermore, with all the proper safety precautions, an adventure ropes course can be one of the safest events you can do. 

Even with that explanation, that only touches the surface on what an experience and benefit a ropes course can be.

So, the next time you are thinking of fun group activities that can dramatically increase the skills and cohesiveness of your organization, try an adventure ropes course. It’s adventures way of team bonding.

Thanks again to Corporate Learning Institute for this article. They provide workshops, training and team building services (including ropes courses) in Illinois and Chicago. See their listing in our team building directory for more information.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Are ropes courses safe?
    • On a ropes course, the actual risk is very low. It is the perceived risk that provides powerful experiences that can be used to foster personal and team growth.
    • A guide or guides are compulsory to conduct safety briefings and facilitate the activity.
    • Talk to the instructors beforehand about safety requirements. They should provide you with all information and equipment necessary to ensure personal safety.
    • However, risk does exist with any outdoor activity. It would be worth checking the safety record of the ropes course providers you intend to use. Are they licenced or accredited (required in most countries)? Is the facility built and maintained by experts?
  1. What if people are afraid of heights?

    • If someone is afraid of heights, simply climbing a foot or two up a tree can be a major accomplishment and source of pride.
    • Most companies operate on a 'challenge by choice' approach, so that if someone doesn't choose to participate in an activity, that decision is respected.
    • There are usually other ways the person can participate, such as through coaching, belaying etc.
  2. How long does a ropes course take?

    • Most ropes courses can be customised to meet your needs.
    • A half-day is common, but it can also work for a few hours or a full team building day.
  3. What does the program involve?

    • A typical ropes building team building program will involve icebreakers and other fun group activities focused on trust building. Then your team can work together on a low ropes course, before progressing to the more adventurous high ropes elements.
  4. What do we need to wear?

    • You should be given full instructions before you attend the event.
    • However, usual requirements include good footwear (lace-up shoes), suncreen, sunglasses and all other things you typically need for an outdoor event.
    • Comfortable clothing is advised. Make sure you tell people they will be wearing a safety harness and be up in the air (obvious huh!). This means skirts for the ladies aren't a good idea!
  5. Can a ropes course be set up at my office or other venue I choose?

    • Talk to a specialist team building company about this. There are portable low ropes challenges that can be brought to you, to avoid the need for your team to travel.

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