Nigel Atkins

Event Management

Teambuilding and Corporate Activities

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Outdoor Team Building Exercises

There are many types of outdoor team building exercises to suit any budget. They are designed to be enjoyable hard work and are not designed to totally exhaust people or expose them to really demanding, frightening situations. These exercises will involve participants in using both mental and physical skills together to provide access to their styles of leadership & teamwork.

For this reason we believe that the exercises need to have complexity and physical elements within them. The exercises are not necessarily physically demanding and complicated in terms of resources whilst maintaining the elements, which will be integral to meeting exercise objectives.

We believe that our approach to using the outdoors as a medium for learning means that we can work with feedback and also be flexible with the exercises as we are running them and respond well to our surrounding area.

    Adidas team event, Austria

 

Why Use Outdoors Team Building Exercises?

Over the last 25 years, management and development courses using the outdoors have become standard training in all of the major companies all over the U.K. The outdoors programme uses real tasks and problems, which provide a powerful and dynamic environment from which to learn.

Outdoor team building exercises can take many forms from 20 minute problem solving tasks to full blown 24hr exercises.

The Exercises are broken into the following categories:

Here are a few examples that we have on offer:

Outdoor Problem Solving Tasks

20 to 40 minutes

These tasks usually run with about 4 to 10 people in each team and consist of the planning and execution in the grounds of a training centre or hotel. Based on the 'planks and poles' theme but integrating planning and working to written briefs, these problem solving tasks identify strengths and weaknesses and contribute to the process of identifying short term targets.

Samples are:

        'Spiders Web', Bolton, Lancashire

        ' Balance Beams', Oakham, Rutland

 

Outdoor Team Building Exercises

1 to 2 hours

ENCHANTED FOREST

Duration: 1 hour

Develop your survival and orienteering skills when your plane crashes in the Enchanted Forest and you and your team are forced to find the missing pieces of the only communication device that will enable you to send an S0S signal for help before the hungry inhabitants of the forest decide you're breakfast! Armed with only a map and a compass, test your leadership skills as each team member gets the chance to lead the team out of dangerous waters to safety.

 

DESERT ISLAND RISK

Duration: 1 hour

You have been shipwrecked on a deserted island in the middle of the pacific, the sky has turned black and Hurricane Harry is about to descend. With wood and materials found on the beach you have 45 minutes to build a shelter that is off the ground, can withstand heavy rain and winds and be big enough to house the whole team. Warning: Your shelter will be tested with a timed monsoon!

 

STRETCHERY TREACHERY TRAIL

Duration: 1 hour

You are an exclusive search and rescue team risking life and limb in an operation to save one of your team members who has been severely injured whilst attempting an escape from the enemy camp. Test your co-ordination and communication skills as you manoeuvre the team and a stretcher through the treacherous trail, laden with lethal explosive devices such as ground mines, trip wires and booby traps. Points and limbs will be lost for each explosive device that is detonated!

 

NORTHERN LIGHTS

Duration: 1 hour

With a real Global Positioning System (GPS) you and your team are tasked with finding the location of each clue that will enable you to complete the mystery challenge. Each member of the team will have the chance to use the GPS to pinpoint the location of each clue that will include the numbers of the combination lock to release the transportation for the race home after the mystery challenge has been successfully completed.

 

PIRATES OF THE KARABINER

Duration: 1 to 2 hours

You are the infamous Priory Pirates who are dying to get their hands on the treasure in the chest that you have stolen. There's just one problem, the key to the treasure chest is hidden on the other side of the lake!

The only solution is to build a raft, make your way across the lake, find the key, get back again and unlock the chest to reveal the treasure. Points are awarded for raft building and unlocking the chest against the clock.

     Fun in the river, 'Pirates of the Karabiner', Derby

 

APOLLO 13

Duration: 1 to 2 hours (depending on numbers of teams and presentation times)

Numbers involved. 6 to 100+ people. Although this exercise can be run for 1 team, it works well with at least 2 teams in competition.

This exercise is to design, build, present and launch a rocket system that will carry an egg to a minimum height of 100 feet and return it to the ground unbroken. All resources for this exercise are to be located in a shop where a price list will be on display. No extra resources may be used. The launch apparatus is set up on location outside the venue.

This exercise may also include the development of a marketing campaign that coincides with the delivery of the product. These must be presented to the ‘customer’ (Event Manager & Tutor), before departing to the launch site.

This exercise is a real BIG FINISH to any event.

   Presentation stage 'Apollo 13', Middlesex

   Launching stage 'Apollo 13', Dovedale, Peak District National Park

 

NIGHTHAWK

Duration: 2 hours

Numbers involved. 6 to 60+ people. Although this exercise can be run for 1 team, it works better with at least 2 teams in competition. This exercise is a basic orienteering event where you can bid at auction for the purchase of sites. These sites need to be visited in order to score, however, the event is run in the dark at night!

 

 

Outdoor Team Building Exercises

2 hours and over

These longer highly complex team exercises call upon the highest levels of teamworking effectiveness. The demanding nature of the exercise provides an early opportunity for participants to act upon the feedback received to date.

     

This exercise also enables participants to practice skills and allow opportunities for leadership behaviours to come to the fore. The team will work as one organisation in this powerful exercise which again also highlights those ‘critical moments’ where the team dynamic is impacted of which examples can be cited during the post-exercise review.

 

EXCALIBUR

Duration: 2 to 2½ hours depending on group size.

Numbers involved. 6 to 16 people. This exercise works well as 1 team.

The task is to recover 'The Sword' and deliver it to the Vestibule. Working areas are marked by the shaded areas on the plan. ‘The sword’ is situated in the king’s stone at the end of the King’s Mall and can only be removed by a knight of the up most courage and compassion!

 

ROLLERBALL

Duration: 2 to 2½ hours depending on the elements included

Numbers involved. 6 to 100+ people. Although this exercise can be run for 3 to 4 small teams, it works well with at least 4 teams of 4 people.

The objective is to give individuals the opportunity to measure their effectiveness as team members in these controlled situations so that with our help they will then be brought to realise what action is deemed necessary to develop and enhance team-working skills further. This will prove invaluable in all areas of personal development identifying strengths, weaknesses and contributions to the process of identifying short-term targets.

This exercise consists of the planning and execution by teams divided into sub groups who are each allocated to a working area. The set is based on European Countries. Each sub-unit works in a specified area and is tasked with designing and constructing a section of the ‘Rollerball’ track meeting set design specifications and ultimately linking to other teams’ constructions. Teams will need to interact and share information in order to develop an effective process to ensure that the spheres travel through all the necessary zones meeting the requirements and constraints of the exercise. For example, the sphere must travel from one zone through other specified zones, negotiating right angle bends, free falls and must travel in those zones for a minimum time Period.

     Final stages 'Rollerball', Woking

 

SYSTEM

Duration: 2 to 2½ hours depending on group size.

Numbers involved. 6 to 16 people This exercise works well as 1 team.

This exercise consists of the execution of a number tasks situated within one large task site. Incorporating planks and poles themes but integrating on site planning and working to a written brief and location map. The group need to retrieve or place items around ‘no-go’ areas to achieve a final common objective. The team are working in restricted areas at times and have a choice of how they distribute team members around the site.

    Don't set the bomb off! 'System', Yorkshire Dales

 

 

INSTANT FIND

Duration: 2 to 3 hours

Numbers involved. 6 to 40 people. Although this exercise can be run for 1 team of 20 people, it works well with 2 teams.

This is a multi-stage exercise, which will require you to work as one complete team. There will be three stages to this exercise. The aim is to raise as much finance as possible by successfully identifying and matching up photographs. The exercise can be either on the surface, underground or a combination of both. It may be prudent to incur some costs in order to achieve the aim.

      Initial stages 'Instant Find', Derbyshire Peak District

 

Outdoor Team Building Exercises

3 hours and over

STARGATE

Duration: 3 to 4 hours

Numbers involved. 6 to 60+ people. Although this exercise can be run for a minimum of 2 teams, it works well with at least 4 teams.

The objective is for all teams to make a profit. Although working as individual teams on their own planets with no idea of what the other teams are doing or where they are in the Galaxy, this exercise has a twist. To obtain resources, team members must go through the ‘Stargate’ to the equipment planet. However, resources on return through the stargate are delivered to the original team but the molecular structure of human tissue is different to that of inanimate objects. The result is that team members are delivered back through stargates but not necessarily to their original planet!

    Task phase of 'Stargate', Derbyshire

 

INTERLINK

Duration: 3 to 5 hours depending if skills sessions are required.

Numbers involved. 6 to 50 people. Although this exercise can be run for 1 team, it works well with at least 2 teams in competition.

This exercise consists of the planning and execution of three tasks in the grounds of the centre. Based on the 'planks and poles' theme but integrating planning and working to a written brief. To identify strengths and weaknesses and contribute to the process of identifying short term targets, this exercise will involve the group planning and constructing structures to meet the approval of the event manager. These will then be used by the group to retrieve or place items placed in ‘no-go’ areas. Before, during and after the task, the tutors will draw out the learning points and take these forward to the next task.

    Task phase of 'Interlink', Stratford on Avon

 

 

BOND

Duration: 3 to 5 hours

This execution of this exercise takes most of the day. The group is handed a project at breakfast from an agent who has had to make an urgent exit! The team will then be faced with a changing and unfolding scenario with apparently competing objectives and limited resources.

There are a number of projects to undertake and the group will need to prioritise the order of these to consider time restraints, availability of resources, personnel and information received. All the constraints, problems, pressures and hurdles of real life will be mimicked in these controlled exercises so that conclusions and learning points can be drawn out to be used back at work.

    Outdoor planning during 'Bond', Cotswolds

  Outdoor clue finding during 'Bond', Hinterhal, Austria

 

QUEST

Duration: 3 to 5 hours

Numbers involved. 6 to 60+ people. Although this exercise can be run for 1 team, it works well with at least 2 teams.

The aim of this exercise to locate as many resource vouchers as possible and escape across the ‘Push Me Pull You Electric Fence’. These vouchers can be exchanged for equipment to assist in your escape. The envelopes/vouchers are not buried, however they have been tucked away from the public eye so you will have to look carefully at each site.

    Setting off on the clue trail! 'Quest', Yorkshire Dales

 

RAMESES

Duration: 3 to 5 hours

This exercise is best run for 1 team of up to 20 people.

This execution of this exercise takes most of the day. The group is handed a project at breakfast and the day takes a similar form to that of the Hike exercise but with a totally different theme and objective. There are a number of projects to undertake and the group will need to prioritise the order of these to consider time restraints, availability of resources, personnel and information received.

       Bike transport in 'Rameses', Belgium

BW INDUSTRIES

Duration: 3 to 5 hours

Numbers involved. 6 to 60+ people. Although this exercise can be run for 1 team, it works well with at least 2 teams.

The objective is for all teams to make a profit. Although working as ONE organisation, each team has the opportunity to excel and will be scored separately. The exercise involves the planning and execution of a series of tasks within a stated time scale in order to generate income. Each team must complete the tasks allocated to them, however, completing more tasks can generate more profit.

   Task execution 'BW Industries', Austria

 

X-FILES

Duration: 3 to 5 hours

This exercise is best run for 1 team of up to 20 people.  

This execution of this exercise takes most of the day. The group is handed a project at breakfast and the day takes a similar form to that of the Hike exercise but with a totally different theme and objective. There are a number of projects to undertake and the group will need to prioritise the order of these to consider time restraints, availability of resources, personnel and information received.

      That UFO is out there somewhere?

 

DELIVERY

Duration: 4 to 5 hours

Numbers involved. 6 to 50 people. Although this exercise can be run for 1 team, it works well with at least 2 teams in competition.

This exercise can be run for teams in competition or for a single team project and consists of a short planning session followed by stage 1 in the grounds of the centre. This is a problem-solving task leading into stage 2 involving the group undertaking the retrieval of resources placed around the local area. Stage 3 is a problem solving task set up on location on the moors above the village. The group will have to manage resources, personnel and the ‘taxi’.

    Final stages 'Delivery', Leicestershire

 

Outdoor Team Building 'CHALLENGE' Exercise

Duration: 4 to 5 hours

Although this exercise can be run for 1 team, it works well with at least 2 teams in competition and can be run in location that has suitable grounds for the tasks.

Challenge exercise is an overall combination of a series of smaller tasks which can include teams competing for either points or money generation depending on the nature of the programme. Teams are set off on a 'round robin' circuit of tasks set in a variety of locations.

During the exercise, teams will may also undertake an orienteering type treasure hunt around the area to recover information and may also include a quiz sheet as well just to give them an even greater challenge!

Challenge exercises do not demand any physical requirements and running is discouraged as teams often over shoot the target points! Teams can be made up by your own choice or left to our instructors on the day.

   'Crates', Rugely, Staffordshire

 

 

Outdoor Team Building Exercises

8 hours and over

The emphasis is on the importance of effective planning, communication, time management and the challenges do not rely upon physical strength or stamina, which means that everyone can take an active and meaningful part. They will place more demand on your skills in managing situations rather than strength, toughness or other physical attributes.

HIKE

Duration:        Day 1 = 3 to 4 hours

Day 2 = 6 hours

Although this exercise can be run for 1 team, it works well with at least 2 teams in competition. This exercise consisting of an evening planning session working to a complex brief, can be run for teams in competition or for a single team project. The evening incorporates meetings and skills sessions. The execution of the exercise takes place for most of the following day.

   Team effort to get the gold in 'Hike', Anglesey, Wales

For most of the morning, the group undertake the finding of answers to clues around the countryside leading them to a fixed point. Stage 2 continues into the afternoon with problem solving tasks set up on location upon the moors around the area. The group will have to manage time, equipment, resources, personnel and the ‘taxi’.

     Navigating the taxi in 'Hike', Derbyshire Peak District

 

 

Location Tasks

20 to 40 minutes

These tasks usually run with about 4 to 10 people in each team and consist of the planning and execution of location based activities..

Samples are:

     'Crates', Rugely, Staffordshire

 

 

Location Exercises

Millers Dale Challenge - Based in the Peak District

Duration: 1 to 3 hours

Numbers involved. 6 to 60 people. Although this exercise can be run for 1 team, it works well with at least 2 teams in competition and is run on location in Millers Dale in the Peak District.

The Millers Dale Challenge itself can include teams competing for either points or money generation depending on the nature of the programme. Teams are set off at the same time and each team has an individual time programme to include an opportunity to abseil the Millers Dale Bridge itself. During the exercise, teams will also undertake an orienteering type treasure hunt around the area to recover information. We may also include a quiz sheet as well just to give them an even greater challenge!

The challenge does not demand any physical requirements and running is discouraged as teams often over shoot the target points! Teams can be made up by your own choice or left to our instructors on the day.

    Big abseil during the 'Millers Dale Challenge', Peak District National Park

 

CRAG RESCUE, MOUNTAIN RESCUE and CAVE RESCUE

Duration: 3 to 4 hours

This exercise is best run for 1 team of up to 16 people.

The execution of the exercise takes place in some of the most breath taking locations in the country. Whether it is on a moor, mountain or cave, this exercise has exhilarated and thrilled all who have taken part in it. The group will have to manage time, equipment, resources, personnel and transport to seek out and save the injured casualty in time!

   First  stages of 'Crag Rescue', Peak District National Park

   First  stages of 'Mountain Rescue', Snowdonia National Park

    Casualty found safe and sound. 'Cave Rescue', Yorkshire Dales National Park

 

HEARTBEAT - Based at ‘Aidensfield’ North Yorkshire Moors

Duration: 3 to 5 hours 

This exercise can be run for 1 or more teams. There is no limit on numbers. This execution of this exercise takes most of the day and includes characters from the hit TV series of the same name. The group is handed a project at breakfast and the day takes a similar form to that of the Chloe exercise but with a totally different theme and objective. The exercise is held at the Mallyan Spout Hotel, which is where the Heartbeat cast stay during filming.

   Great place to plan the next stage! 'Heartbeat', Yorkshire Moors

 

WHAT'S UP DOC  - Based at Port Isaac, Cornwall

Duration: 3 to 5 hours

This exercise can be run for 1 or more teams. There is no limit on numbers. This exercise is similar to ‘Heartbeat’ and takes most of the day. Based on the popular TV series ‘Doc Martin’, this exercises takes you to many of the locations used in the programme. The exercise includes, coastal walking and scrambling, mountain biking and maybe getting your feet a little wet!

    Port Isaac, Cornwall

    Port Isaac, Cornwall

 

QUEST FOR THE HOLY GRAIL  - Based at Doune, Scotland

Duration: 4 to 5 hours

This exercise can be run for 1 or more teams. There is no limit on numbers. This exercise is similar to ‘Heartbeat’ and takes most of the day. Based on the popular story from ‘Monty Python’, this exercises takes you to many of the castle sequences shot in this epic film, Castle Anthrax! Vehicles provided are mountain bikes, mini bus and Coconuts!

 

ROPEWAY - High Ropes Course Exercise

Duration: 2 to 3 hours

Numbers involved. 6 to 30+ people. Although this exercise can be run for 1 team, it works well with at least 2 teams. The largest size we have run Ropeway for so far is 4 teams of 8 people.

Based on location at one of the ropes courses, the team is required to deliver a client (Donald), safely through the ‘Dark Zone’ to the finishing point at the far side of the ‘Ropeway’. The ‘Dark Zone’ has three physical tasks and four mental tasks. The ‘Dark Zone’ must be completed in the correct order. There is no set time limit to the mental task solutions which can be handed in at the finishing point. You have a small selection of equipment available for this exercise which can be found at the starting point. The team must take all the equipment with them to the finishing point. Your client (Donald) may be interviewed at any time during the exercise to establish that TLC is being administered.