Wind in the Willows

Type of Activity: Trust

Props Needed: None

Set Up: Ten to Fifteen people stand shoulder to shoulder in a circle with one person (the faller) standing rigid and trusting in the center.  The center person should cross their arms in front of them and grab their shoulders.  This will help them stay rigid as well as protect their own bodies, particularly women.  This trust-pass activity is used effectively as a warm-up activity for the more dramatic falling sequence of The Trust Fall.

Process: With the group read with hands up the center person, remaining rigid, falls slowly in any direction.  Before he/she moves very far off plumb, the circle people redirect the faller's impetus to another arc of the circle.  The center person should always have at least 3 different people on the outside of the circle spotting them at all times during their time swaying.  This fall-catch-push sequence continues in a gentle fashion until the center person decides they are done by informing the group or it becomes obvious that the center person is relaxing (but remaining rigid). Do this activity till the circle people have gained confidence in their ability to work together toward handling the occasional weight shift of the faller.  Change people in the center until everyone who wants to has had an opportunity to be in the middle. If needed emphasis the activity is "light breeze" not "hurricane," this will improve the overall experience for everyone.

Variations: This process can assist the group in getting into other Trust activities such as Levitation. Try and do this entire activity without speaking, once all question have been answered try silent and see how that effects the group and the overall experience.

Debriefing Topics:

  • What did it feel like to be in the middle of the circle?
  • How did it feel to be taken care of by your teammates?
  • What was it like to be a spotter?
  • Why is it important to build up trust in the group?

For more resources see: Cowtails & Cobras 2

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