Running the Games


Explaining the Rules/Intro

Before the games begin, there are serveral things you must explain:
  • Always have to introduce yourself as the "Person in charge".
  • Then have everyone introduce each other.
  • Explain safety rules and encourage safe, fun, play.
  • Explain points, scoring and punishments.
  • A good way to start is with an "ice-breaker" game.
  • Encourage people to cheer each other on.

Explaining Rules for Specific Games

Make sure youproject your voice. Use a mega phone if you have one.
Always be sure everyone understands the rules before starting a game. Use people to demonstrate the game if needed. A demonstration often helps even if it does not seem nessesary.

-back to topics-

Forming Teams

Your team lists should have been made during planning.
Then you should only need to read out the names and send them to specific zones to stand. Then count the number of people on each team to make sure the teams are even. Sometime peope are missing or injured etc. Swap team memebers if nessesary. Also check for fairness. If one team seems really superior, change the team! Nothing is less fun than always losing every game.
Then distrubute pinnies/team flags to each team.

Name Tag Teams

This is one trick we invented. Simply put the team names on each name tag before hand. MORE EXPLANATION TO COME...

-back to topics-

 Flexibility is Power

Be flexible like me!
Remember that the schedule is just a guideline. Don't try to rush to fit everything in. If you fall behind, simply cut out the weaker games. If you are ahead of schedule, replay fun games they really enjoy it or give them breaks or more free time! Don't let the schedule control you or stress you out. Have fun!

If they are fatigued, give them a water break. If people are getting really tired reorder the schedule so only the fun games are going to be played or reorder it so a less strenuous game is played first to give them a break.

If you sense someone REALLY doesn't want to do something, do not force them to. If many people are against it, consider dropping the entire game altogether. But be advised, much of the time, their complaining stops once they realize how much fun the game is.

-back to topics-

Looking Ahead

It is important to look at what the next game is while the current game is running. Many times it is possible to start setting up the next game even before they are finished playing the last one.
Also always keep an eye on the weather. If you must call it quits early, play the best games only.

-back to topics-

Watching For Danger

This is very important. During the game, you will often see signs of trouble.

Equipment / Play Area Deterioration

Sometimes as you play, equipment breaks. With enough force any rough surface can cut someone.
ex) Swimming noodles with torn edges.
ex) Even something as simple as a broken plastic cup/bucket can totally cut someones hand.

After playing enough water games, a certain area of the field can become very slick. Don't make then run back and forth over it. Play dry game before wet games.

Tiredness, Exhaustion and Heat Stroke

Be weary of the sun! Make sure they get enough water breaks. If someone's face is all red and they look like they are going to pass out, let them sit out for a bit. But if one person is like that, perhaps a break in needed for everyone. Give them sunscreen, and use a shaded area for the water station. Explain rules and such in a shaded area as well.

Competitiveness and Violence

Some games incline the players to become very competitive and/or violent. If you see a game becoming too competitive or violent, stop the game or sit specific players out. A change of rules can also usually solve this problem. It is very easy to spot anger or rage in a players eyes. Sit them out. Remind them that the game is just for fun.

Note that certain players are inclined:
  • Older males/females (who need to win/succeed). 25 years+
  • Nerdy people (who need to prove themself). Strong but not skilled/atheletic.
  • People showing off to gain the favor of the opposite gender. Esp older males 25+.
  • A combination of these. If they are all 3, beware!!!
Note that certain situations encourage it:
  • Pride of losing to an inferior team. Adults being beaten by kids will make them Crazy competitive!
  • Frustration with Cheating. When cheating goes unchecked, honest players get angry and this leads to problems.
  • Bad game design. Ex) If your game involves too many people running into too small an area to get something, you will make people very competitive.
  • A combination of these.
ex) bucket ball. It is basically handball, but you must score in the bucket. Usually what happens in this game is people end up blocking the bucket or standing in front of it. The frustration of not being able to score leads players to charge the person blocking, often knocking them over and causing injury. There is also a tnedancy for multiple players to get their hands on the ball, resulting in a tugging match which usually ends up with some kid/girl on the floor crying.
Solutions? Don't play this game. Mark off a zone around the bucket which players are not allowed to step within.

ex) kids/youth vs adults soccer. In this situation, if the adults lose, it will be shameful, so they must prove themselves. Thus the game play becomes aggressive and dangerous. When a 30 years old guy is kicking a soccer ball as hard as they can. A 12 year old kid cannot get hit in the face.
Solutions? Don't play this game. Use a nerf ball. Sit out the hardcore players.

No one has fun when someone gets hurt.

-back to topics-

Tips & Tricks

To promote fun and teamwork, encourage people to cheer each other on. When they are alone it is less fun. Make them run together, work together, hold hands etc

Make sure you are having fun while running the games!!! It won't be fun for them, if it looks like it is a total drag for you to run the games for them.

Never be too commanding in terms of telling them what to do. It's not fun if you're being ordered to have fun. On that note, here are some tips to order them around without them knowing it.

Get Their Cooperation

  • Choose willing people (good sports) to be first. Once a few people do it, all will follow.
  • Scare them with something worse. ex) They will eat a hot banana if you say they can have sardines instead.
  • Offer a prize. Even fake prizes are enough incentive to get people to do stuff. Cold drinks will make them do anything.
  • Threaten Kangaroo court. This method is not recommended. ex) Last person to line up goes to Kangaroo Court.
  • Rush them to get obedience. ex) Tell them there are time restraints to get them to line up faster. "Hurry! Hurry! This next game is really fun!"

-back to topics-