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The importance of transition time!
Moderator(s): Adrienne Moore
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3/2/2015 at 4:35:27 AM GMT
Posts: 3
The importance of transition time!

Hello, Up2Us Members and Coaches! The post below the March 2015 edition of a monthly series of moderated forum discussion on a wide range of topics hosted by Up2Us. Our resident staff moderator will be active here throughout the month - and we hope you will be too! Please join the discussion and come back often!

There will be a new post on a new topic by a new staff member, coach or member organization every month - so come back often! We look forward to discussing sports-based youth development (SBYD) with you.


Hi everyone, Adrienne Moore here. I am the Assistant Director for Capacity-Building and part of the National Training Team here at Up2Us. A big part of my job as a member of our training team is working with coaches all over the country - in fact right now I am in Chicago for our Coach Across America Training Institute with nearly 80 coaches from all over the country!

Transition times - moving your players from point "A" to point "B" - can be a big challenge as a coach. If not intentionally planned, it can lead to behavior problems, time delays and high levels of stress for both you as a coach and for your players.

 So, let's talk about some fun, simple strategies for transition times!

  • Bring the Ball: Give the group one or two beach balls (or other pieces of equipment you might have that would work for this). To walk to "Point B" - each person puts a finger on the beach ball and they must balance/move collectively until they reach their destination. 
  • Walk and Talk: Everyone must find a partner. Explain that this will be their "transition buddy" and that they will have two important questions to answer as they walk. Conversations should be kept at an "inside level" so that everyone can hear their partner.
    • Example questions: What do you want to be when you grow up? What was your favorite vacation and why? What
  • Country Tag: Players walk in pairs. The first player names a country, for example England. The next player has to name a country which starts with the last letter of last named country, for example, Denmark. Play continues until a player can not name a country or a country is repeated.
  • Alliteration Challenge: Players try and make the longest sentence with words that all start with the same letter.  For example, S, “Samantha sang something silly so she sat sulking somewhere sunny”. All players use the same letter. The winner is the player with the longest sentence.
  • Silly Walks: This is a simple game of taking of it in turns to decide how to walk until reaching the next landmark (e.g. gate, stile, tree). Walk ideas:

               - Lion – fingers clawed and strong movements

               - Horse – nodding head and galloping

               - Crocodile – arms stretched out in front, opening and closing to imitate jaws.

               - You call it! Silly walk however you want.

Sound effects are optional given your space.


What are some of your favorite transition games, tips and tricks? Share them here!

3/30/2015 at 6:08:42 PM GMT
Hey this is Kate Post, the Dance Coach from Girl Power in Miami Fl : )

When waiting for the girls to get dressed, I play different brain games . Here's one activity my girls enjoy playing


One person is “it”; the other children stand in a certain order. Children mix up and “it” puts them back in order.

Hope your students have fun playing this game : )

4/13/2015 at 5:37:56 PM GMT
Posts: 6
Kate, this is an awesome game! Thanks for sharing :)

12/7/2015 at 7:43:33 PM GMT
These aren't so much transition games, but fun team bonding games that I brought to the team from my memories of childhood sleepovers and summer camps.

1) HAH!:
Find a large area and having the players lay in a circle so that each persons head is on the next person's stomach, like a pillow. When I've done this with big groups, we've had to make lots of little circles with about 5 people in each. It's important that you make the circle accurately, so that Person A had their head on Person B, B is on C, C is on D, and D is on A. Everyone's legs will be fanning out around the outside of the circle.
Once in this circle of heads on tummies, have one person begin by loudly saying "HAH!" so that their tummy bounces the person's head who is lying on it. Once your head is bounced, it is your turn to say "HA!" It begins slow and deliberate, but inevitably winds up in loads of uncontrollable giggles and laughter. It's fun to have your head bounce up, and to try to go around the circle faster and faster.

2) Circle Squat:
Stand in a circle and move tightly together until you are tightly shoulder to shoulder. Everyone turns to their right and squeezes together again until everyone is front to back with one another in a small, compact circle. Put your hands on the person's shoulders in front of you. On "go", everyone squats down together at the same time to sit on the lap of the person behind them. You have to work together to stay up! Use your core, your legs, and hold onto the person in front of you! Try to stay compact. If it works, the whole circle should be able to stay like that for awhile, everyone sitting on the person behind them as a self sufficient circle. It took my girls a couple tries to get it, the first few resulted in some falling, so find soft ground!

3) Light as a feather, stiff as a board:
Have one person lay down (start with a tiny person!). Every one else sticks out their pointer fingers and uses only those fingers to try to lift the person up! It's important that the laying down person stays very stiff, no saggy butts! With everyone's small contribution of just two fingers each, you will be able to lift the person all the way off the ground. Make sure to have someone be in charge of guarding the person's head, and have hands ready to catch in case people drop suddenly.

4) Log/bench walk:

Find a long narrow bench, sturdy log, or low wall. Make sure it is not too high off the ground in case people fall off. Have everyone stand in a row, shoulder to shoulder, on top of the log. The object of the activity is to pass everyone from one end to the other, until everyone has gone and you are back in your original order. The way to pass is to essentially hug and twist while alternating feet placements until the person is past. When I've done this activity, we did it on a very long skinny bench by a campfire pit, and it was challenging! You need to work together to share the small space and keep a unified center of balance. If one person leans out to much, both people will fall from the bench and the group has to start over. To make it harder, try doing it silently!

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