Improv Games for Agility

Improv Games for AgilityAgility is all about being relaxed and aware.  It is no good being aware but tense.  A goalkeeper waiting to save a penalty is bouncing on their toes and getting in the zone.  This is the state to aim for when playing these improv games.  Relaxed, open and aware.

1. Headlines

Method

  • Work with a partner.
  • One invents a newspaper headline such as ‘Traffic Busiest on Record’
  • The other listens to the end of the sentence and invents a second headline starting with the last word used. For example:
  • A: Traffic Busiest on Record
  • B: Record Shop Set to Close
  • A: Close Your Mouth When Eating, Say Experts
  • B: Experts Deny Imminent Meteor Impact with Earth
  • A: Earth Best Planet in Solar System, Say NASA

Advanced Tips

  • Don’t worry about the validity of your headlines.
  • The exercise is about listening, and reacting quickly, not accuracy of information.

Benefits

  • Deep listening
  • Pair connection
  • Co-creation
  • Agility
  • Being in the moment

2. Patterns

Method

  • Participants stand in a circle and a pattern is set up around the circle.
  • The easiest pattern is to say ‘you’ and point to someone else.
  • Leave your arm out to show you have contributed to the pattern.
  • The person you pointed to then points to someone else and says ‘you’.
  • This continues until a pattern involving all the players is established.
  • Then the pattern is repeated and learned by the participants.
  • Then another pattern can be established. It can be anything such as a catagory, people’s names or anything else you may choose.
  • It is helpful if the pattern is different to the first one.
  • Then both patterns can be started simultaneously and the group must try to keep both going.

Advanced Tips

  • Try adding patterns until it becomes impossible!
  • Make sure to get eye contact with the next person in the pattern and try to make sure they have ‘received’ your pass.
  • Try song lyrics or each other’s names, but not the name of who you are pointing at!

Benefits

  • Awareness
  • Being in the moment
  • Listening
  • Agility

3. Dutch Clapping

Method

  • Get into pairs facing each other
  • Clap once together
  • Now you have four choices: Move your hands up, down, left or right.
  • Make your own choice but do it at the same time as your partner.
  • Clap again. Move hands again. Clap again. Move hands again.
  • Establish a rhythm.
  • Now, if you see that you and your partner both moved your hands in the same directions (it’s a 1/4 chance), then instead of the next clap you will high ten each other (clap your hands against your partner’s hands.)
  • Then move your hands again as before.
  • Notice that if you move your hands left, then your partner will have to move their hands right for it to be a match!
  • Examine this ridiculous diagram to become even more confused…
  • Person A Person B Result
    Clap Clap
    Left Left X
    Clap Clap
    Up Right X
    Clap Clap
    Down Down Yay
    High Ten High Ten
    Up Down X
    Clap Clap
    Left Right Yay
    High Ten High Ten
    Left Left X
    Clap Clap
    etc etc

Advanced Tips

  • Try to build to a speed that is just on the edge of what you can manage
  • Maintain eye contact
  • Laugh

Benefits

  • Somehow this is ludicrous fun
  • Laughter
  • Connection
  • Agility.

Not sure you can land this one? Call The Maydays, and we can deliver these games either as part of a CPD accredited Business Improv Workshop, or as a free-standing energiser sequence at a conference or industry event.
We also create and deliver custom improvisation workshops for your business. Here are some of the most popular improv training formats in London, across the UK and internationally.
The Maydays are one of the longest established and renowned improvisation companies in the UK. We deliver comedy improv shows around the world, run regular improv classes in London and Brighton, and regularly deliver custom business improv solutions for organisations. Read how improv at work works here!

We would love to hear about your experiences trying these improv games.  To tell us about it, or to find out how we can bring Improv Training to your life and work, get in touch

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