Trust Circle

Trust Circle

The Challenge and Objectives
The group of seven to 11 participants forms a tight circle around a faller. The faller properly positions hands, arms and elbow close to the body, then begins the sequence of commands. Keeping the body stiff, the faller may fall in any direction. The faller gains an increased sense of trust and the spotters learn to adjust their positions quickly to spot a fall that might be difficult to anticipate.

Tasks for the Instructor

  1. Clear the area of any obstructions, twigs or limbs.
  2. Issue the challenge to the group.
    1. Demonstrate safe hand position for spotters: fingers straight and held close together, with thumb pressed to the hand. This keeps fingers/thumbs from getting caught in the faller’s clothing.
    2. Instruct the faller to keep the body stiff as a board.
    3. Instruct the faller to keep both feet in one place as though they were nailed to the ground.
    4. The faller should allow body weight to drift in any direction it wants to go.
    5. The spotters should catch and gently return the faller to an upright position. There should be no pushing or shoving.
    6. Describe commands to the group:

      Faller: Spotters ready?
      Spotters: Spotters ready.
      Faller: (your name) falling.
      Spotters: Fall on.

Safety Precautions

  1. No actions can begin until proper commands are given.
  2. There should be no bantering among participants; this is a serious learning situation. Encourage the faller and keep all comments positive.

Variations for accomplishing the event

  1. Blindfold the faller.
  2. Increase the size of the circle so that the faller has a greater distance to fall before being caught.

After the event

  1. Lead a group discussion on trust, proper commands, and the importance of spotters being continually ready to catch a faller.

Possible COPE Elements