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The Floating Stick – Free Team Building Game

Duration: 10 -30 minutes

Intended for:

Use this free floating stick team building game as a method of demonstrating the importance of communication and teamwork in achieving a goal.

Training course contents:

A two page instruction document, which explains how to carry out the team building game, ‘The Floating Stick’ can be downloaded for free in Word format from the link at the bottom of this page, or you can follow the notes below.

Tools – a long, light rod or stick (garden bamboo is perfect).


Advise participants that you would like them to carry out an exercise which will demonstrate that anything can be achieved with a little effort and a lot of teamwork.

Ask the participants to line up in two groups facing each other and point the index finger of each hand out in front of them.

Now, place the floating stick on top of their outstretched fingers so that it is balanced along the top of each person’s fingers in a straight line.

The team must lower the floating stick to the ground without holding on to it, grasping it or losing contact with their fingers. The stick must remain balanced on each person’s fingers at all times. If at any point someone loses contact with the stick, the task will be restarted.

Note: As the participants carry out the task they will find that the rod goes up rather than down. Only with concerted effort and a lot of careful communication can they get the rod to move down. If participants comment that they are going to give up, then provide them with ideas and suggestions that will help. The trick is to take things slow, calmly and carefully and eventually the stick will go down.



  • What was your initial reaction?
  • How well did you cope as a group?
  • What was difficult about the task?
  • What skills did the team need to succeed?
  • What were your strengths and weaknesses?
  • How well did you communicate?
  • What would you do differently next time?


The Reason? – as everyone is trying to keep their finger connected to the stick, the greater upwards pressure is more than the weight of the stick. Therefore, the stick rises rather than falls.


During this team building game participants must get the stick to the floor in order to prove their teamwork capabilities!

This Team Building Game works well with our Team Building Training Materials.

The Floating Stick – Free Team Building Game


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