I'm going to show you an improv exercise called "Tug of War". This is an exercise I use in one of the first days of improv class to get people to have a feel for what's it like when they're on the spot and they can control what's going on, what are their instincts that come out. So, usually set up a little game of Tug of War. I say find a partner, here's my partner Shannon. Shannon: Hey. Shana: And pick up an imaginary rope. So we're going to hold this rope and we're going to play a little round of Tug of War. We'll imagine there's a little red flag here in the middle of the rope and each of us is trying to pull that red flag to our own side and see if we can win. So we'll say this round will go for just about ten seconds and see what happens. Ready, go! O.k. game! Good, fewf, ahhh! So that's usually how it goes with beginning players. You have a magical elastic rope that stretches as both of them win the game. Usually it's a draw, I'll say raise your hand if you won, raise your hand if you lost, raise your hand if you tied. It's just a quick example of what happens when you're able to control the circumstances because there's not a real rope, there's a fake rope. So I can exert my own ideas and my own ego onto the outcome of this scene. So what I'll do I'll say let's play it again but this time I want you to focus on being a good sport and giving your partner a good time instead of your own personal success. So, so we're going to play again and this time we're going to make a quick decision about whose going to win and who’s going to lose. Both of us are going to be really good sports about it. I don't know who’s going to win; let's see what happens. Let's pick up the rope and go! Yes, I won! So, yeah, Shannon did a great job by acting like he was trying to win but being willing to lose and I did a great job by celebrating my victory. Shannon: Good job! Shana: Thank you, yeah. In improv we like winners and we like losers, we like clear choices. We don't like a lot of negotiation and bargaining and we don't like it when people are always trying to win and show off so, that's a little example with the improv game "Tug of War".
A great thing to start a simple standing exercise is with a chair. Hold on to a chair or without a chair; and balance on 1 leg.
This is a good position to feel the center of gravity over the ankles. This is also your goal to maintain your center over the ankles.
The tug of war improv exercise helps participants get used to what it feels like to be on the spot. Learn the tug of war improv exercise for sharing control in this free theater video.
By the end of the above exercises, your team will feel a bit goofier and more connected, and will have a lot to think and talk about. A great way to end a series of improv exercises is to have a discussion about the workshop. Here are some leading questions for your discussion: