Team activity — Get moving

An activity to help recognize the difference in tension and energy that even a couple minutes of movement can make. 

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Time required

15 minutes 


This activity requires a way for each participant to record their answers. 

Suggested wording 

Before we begin, I want you to record how you are feeling right now. Describe where there is tension in your body and describe your energy levels. I’ll give you one minute. 

[After one minute.] 

This break activity is really easy to do. Essentially, it’s just to get up and move away from wherever you are working. You could fill your water bottle or get a snack. You could go for a walk or some other form of exercise. The only thing you can’t do during this break is check your devices. The reason for this is that you’re still engaging your mind rather than taking a break and moving your body. Whatever it is, make sure you’re moving away from your work. 

For today, I’ll walk us through a series of stretch movements that you can do seated or standing. Remember that none of these movements should cause pain, and if they do you should stop. 

Please stand up if you are able to and move away from where you were sitting. 

We are going to start with walking and marching in place. When I say “recharge” lift your knees up high and pump your arms. If you’re unable to stand, simulate it from your seated position. When I say “walk” relax your arms and move at a comfortable pace. 

Ready? Walk. 

[In total this should be 1 – 2 minutes of marching and walking. You can alternate back and forth starting and ending with walking as you see fit.] 

[For each of the following, allow about 10 seconds per side for each instruction.]  

Raise both arms over your head and gently pull on the elbow of one arm with the other.

Now switch arms and gently pull on the elbow of the other arm.

Drop your chin to your chest and roll your neck gently to one side, keeping your chin tucked.

Now, roll your neck gently to the other side.

Repeat this 5 times.

Roll your shoulders backwards in circles.

Now roll your shoulders forwards in circles.

Extend your arm directly in front of you and gently pull your fingertips back to extend your wrist. Repeat on the other side.

Extend your arm directly in front of you with your fingertips facing down and pull your knuckles towards your arm.

This exercise is especially helpful for those who spend a lot of time using a keyboard.

If you’re standing, sit back down in your seat.

If you’re able, cross one of your legs placing your ankle over the other knee and lean forward gently.

Next repeat with the other ankle over your other knee. 

Remember to lean forward gently. Still seated, twist at the waist while keeping your hips facing forward. Gently twist a little bit more on the same side. 

Repeat on the other side. 

Our final exercise is simply to extend your arms in front of you and shake your arms, wrists and elbows. 

I want you to record how you are feeling now. Describe any changes in the tension and energy levels you noticed before we began. I’ll give you one minute to record this. 

[After one minute.]

Did anyone notice a difference?

[Take up answers for 2 minutes.]

Although we have only spent a couple of minutes moving, our bodies are more energized than they would have been if we just continued to sit. This energy also translates into improved focus and productivity. If you were to spend 15 minutes moving the benefits would be even greater. 

Those extra steps you take can help contribute to better health by making you more active and giving you an energizing break throughout the day. 

Find more activities like this at Team building activities.

Contributors include.articlesDavid K. MacDonaldMary Ann Baynton

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