Eagle Trust Run

Type of Activity: Trust

Props Needed: None

Set Up: Need a very large open area to work in, especially if you have to create more than one group. This is a very powerful activity when it is kept safe – so, please keep it safe. If you need to make two (or more) groups there must be a facilitator with each group. We split our group when we have 14 or more participants – we don’t play this one with less than 7 in a group.  Plays well with 7 to 25 for 25 to 35 minutes.

Process: Each group will have one active participant for each round. The remainder of the group creates a large circle (a little bit beyond the Flying Chicken circle described in The Chicken Game - I guess we could call this one the Circle Formation Solo Flying Chicken). Anyway, this circle of participants will be spotters (or in this case we could call them – guiders). The active participant will start by standing in the middle of her groups circle with her eyes closed and her arms up – like a Eagle. From here they will start to slowly (emphasize slowly) jog towards the circle of participants around them. As the active participant (the Eagle) approaches the spotters the spotter nearest the Eagles right arm carefully takes this arm with both hands, holding above the Eagles wrist and turns her around the outside of the circle and then brings her back to the inside of the circle and gently lets go so the Eagle is traveling across the inside of the circle again towards another spotter. (As you can envision, you don’t want a “crack-the-whip” sort of turn and let go – this would not build trust. It is a gentle turn back into the circle.) The Eagle continues across the circle where another spotter, closest to the Eagles right arm, turns the Eagle back into the circle again. Let the Eagle take 3 or 4 crosses before stopping the flight. Have the Eagle then exchange places with someone else in the circle ready to fly.

Warning: As with all trust activities, there are multiple safety issues. Participants need to pay attention, especially about knowing which arm (the right) of the Eagle to grab hold of. It will not build trust if two participants each grab an arm of the Eagle at the same time. Also, spotter (or guiders) should not “whip” the Eagle around. This action may cause injury. If you have any apprehension about your group performing this one safely, then do something else until you feel they can.

Debriefing Topics:

  • What did it feel like to be supported by the group?
  • What feelings did you experience?
  • How did it feel to be responsible for someone else’s safety?

For more resources see: Empty Bag

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