25 Best Unusual Team Building Activities for Work in 2022

Home » Resources » Unusual Team Building ActivitiesUpdated: July 27, 2022

You discovered our list of creative and unusual team building activities.

Unusual team building activities are unique and compelling exercises to do with teams. Examples include bungee jumping, camping, and ostrich racing. These activities challenge groups and help make the participants feel bolder, ready, and willing to face new challenges.

These ideas are examples of team building events, relationship-building experiences, team bonding ideas, community-building activities, and ways to have fun at work. These experiences include indoor team building activities and outdoor team building ideas.

This article covers:

  • original team building ideas
  • unique team building activities
  • unexpected team building exercises
  • unconventional team building ideas
  • creative team building ideas

Let’s get started.

List of unusual team building activities

Unique, innovative team building ideas can challenge teams to face individual fears and unleash personal or team potential and skills. Here are some of the most creative ideas to try with your group.

1. Skydiving

Skydiving is among the most unexpected team building exercises to surprise your group. To prepare for a skydiving experience, the planner has to schedule a session with companies that offer these services. First-time participants need to take an orientation class to familiarize themselves with the sports’ basics, for example, how to control breathing in high altitudes and opening the parachute in preparation for landing. Exciting activities to do as a team in the air include making formations, doing the free fall, and gliding.

Skydiving is a good challenge for folks who desire to curb fears such as height phobia.

2. Rock Climbing

Rock climbing is an excellent opportunity to work out and meet like-minded folks. This physically demanding activity can be a good alternative to common exercises such as weight lifting. In addition, rock climbing takes the team outside the workplace to interact with their environment, the locals, and the beautiful scenery. The new atmosphere is key to killing office boredom and unwinding. Also, letting your team partake in the climbing challenge helps to build endurance and resilience among participants.

To make this activity fun, let the host know the members’ level of expertise. This information guides the host in setting appropriate challenges for beginners or experts. In addition, advise members on the must-have equipment and clothing.

Learn more about rock climbing.

3. Zorbing

Zorbing is a fun recreational team building activity for all seasons. Folks challenge themselves to roll down the hill or on water. During winter, team members can zorb on frozen lakes or ski on snow inside the inflatable ball. This activity is simple but engaging. Team members can compete in races where participants steer the orb balls by rolling them and then controlling the speed and direction.

The inflated balls air-cushion the riders from impact. However, for safety against suffocation, participants should consult with the hosts to determine how long members can comfortably remain enclosed in the ball. The duration varies with manufacturers and can be between seven minutes to half an hour.

4. Bungee Jumping

Bungee jumping is one of the most unconventional team building ideas. If your team has been asking for an adrenaline-rushing activity, then this jump will likely satisfy the team’s demand. To enjoy this challenge, participants must prepare themselves mentally for the leap. One plus is that the activity requires little to no physical preparation. Members can meditate while suspended to help calm anxiety and make the fall more bearable.

It is advisable to deal only with licensed bungee jumping service providers to ensure your team’s health and safety. Licensed providers offer professional safety equipment, training, and guidance to help your team get the most out of the challenge.

5. Bouldering

Bouldering is a climbing game where players use no ropes for support but climbing shoes and a landing mat.

This team building activity demands great physical and mental engagement. Participants must be super calculative to get hold of the supportive boulders to reach the peak points. In addition, the game requires a lot of concentration, and in the end, participants can learn the importance of focusing to solve problems.

Players of all ages and weights can participate in a bouldering challenge. Participants can choose an appropriate difficulty level depending on their expertise. Since this activity demands flexibility to hit the target, rehearsing for it gives participants a workout opportunity that helps keep the body healthy.

Always ensure a soft landing is available to protect team members from fall injuries for safety purposes.

6. Aerial Yoga

Aerial Yoga is a great unconventional team building exercise Participants can build strength and improve flexibility by taking up this enhanced form of yoga.

To practice aerial yoga indoors, participants must fasten a supportive hammock or belt on a solid ceiling. Beginners can start with partially suspended poses like ‘chair pose aerial.’ However, more confident participants can do full suspension on inversion and standing postures.

Planners can advise their teams to consult professionals in case of questions. The exercise is ideal for better body and mind health, and participants can regularly do aerial yoga at home.

Check out this guide to team building yoga.

7. Sky Walking

A skywalk tour is one of the most thrilling adventures for groups. Team members can view fascinating sceneries from a very high-altitude area. Skywalk paths usually connect two natural high points like hills or cliffs. However, most cities have skywalk facilities extending from very tall buildings. Groups can search skywalk locations nearby and psyche up one another to try the experience.

8. Camping

Camping is one of the unique team building activities that expose participants to learn some survival tactics. The event takes the team members out of their comfort zone to unfamiliar surroundings, and participants apply their skills and wisdom to thrive. For instance, finding food, shelter, and creating warmth. Camping helps participants to learn the art of solving problems through simple actions like recycling and improvising.

As a safety precaution, let team members carry first aid tools and include a bug repellant, drinking water, and just enough food in the provisions. In addition, if the team is camping in an area with wild animals, organize to have at least one member keep vigil and keep a fire burning throughout the night.

Check out this list of virtual campfire ideas.

9. Scuba Diving

If you have a team that loves swimming or diving, then scuba diving is among the best unusual team building ideas. For added fun, teams can include games like underwater scavenger hunts. Participants can have a list of prompts, including sea animals, plants, and features. Players can use underwater cameras to capture images of objects. Other considerations for scuba diving are competing to reach the greatest depth or touring the sea recreationally.

If group members are inexperienced in diving, then enrolling in a scuba diving program can help the team understand the diving basics, learn the skills, and get the most fun out of this exciting activity. For safety against fatalities, ensure that each team member has properly functioning breathing equipment and is well supervised by a professional diver.

10. Zip Lining

Zip lining is among the best original team building ideas for aerial expeditions. Participants will likely enjoy feeling like flying birds as they ride across a valley or slope on a steel cable. Height may make ziplining feel a little scary for first-timers. However, psychological preparation, familiarization with safety precautions, and some arm workouts days before the real event help to make the experience worthwhile.

11. Mountain Climbing

Among the most inexpensive and unpopular team building activities is climbing the mountains. This activity lets parties set team targets for distance or height. Mountaineering imparts endurance and patience. Since the exercise is physically engaging, participants can pair it with passive forms of entertainment like storytelling.

When planning a mountain climbing event, organizers should assess each team member’s abilities and needs to prepare a suitable route or alternative plan. For example, participants with limiting medical conditions, such as asthma and hypertension, can have more subtle options like hill climbing or taking the stairs.

12. Coasteering

One way the most intriguing ways to explore and appreciate the seashore is by coasteering. The team members tour along an uneven seaside, which may consist of cliffs, rocks, and gullies. Participants should not use water crafts like canoes in this activity but can swim or dive. With coasteering, team members can learn and practice trust and empathy while looking out for each other.

Participants should be wary of slippery surfaces, tides, sharp rocks, and submerged objects. These risks can cause falls, cuts, bruises, or being swept by tides. Focusing on individual and team movements should minimize these hazards.

13. Blindfolded Cook-off

The blindfolded cook-off is among the original team building ideas to take cooking contests a notch higher. In this activity, the host instructs participants to prepare a meal on a given recipe. Participants first familiarize themselves with procedures and then put on the blindfolds. The host then sets the ingredients on the table, and the cooking begins. Participants should use all other senses to identify the ingredients and have a good memory of the recipe. In the end, participants taste the food and assess the best cook on blindfolds.

The host should offer sufficient supervision to avoid accidents from fire, electricity, and sharp objects.

Check out this guide to office cook-offs.

14. Dune Surfing

The dessert’s rich attractions like oases, sand dunes, and plains make a fantastic option for a group outing. If your team chooses a desert safari, then make sure you try surfing on the sand dunes. Teams can plan for a private corporate dune surfing event or book a slot with tour companies that sell desert experiences. Participants need to have sand boards to slide down the slope. For convenience and safety, ask team members to carry masks and goggles to prevent the discomfort of sand from getting into nostrils and eyes.

The team can surf on the sandy seashores if no deserts are nearby.

15. Swinging In Heights

Swinging in heights is among the most creative team building ideas to help team members unwind from day-to-day pressures. In this thrilling activity, participants defy heights by swaying in elongated swings or swings set up on an elevated spot. Group members can have controlled risk swinging games at amusement parks and on tall buildings’ rooftops.

To partake in this playful activity locally, members can improvise the swings. For instance, using a tire and a strong rope suspended securely on a tall tree or structure around the office premise.

16. Virtual Reality Tours

Virtual reality tours are among the most rewarding team building ideas. These tours are convenient for remote and in-person groups. The VR visits save traveling time and allow teams to reduce their carbon footprint. Virtual visits are resourceful. Teams can learn more about a location or process as though members were at the scene. Teams can use this activity as a recreational team building exercise or to train team members on various job aspects.

17. Building for a Cause

Charity events go a long way in nurturing empathy and compassion in volunteers. Among the best ways for team members to give back to the community is by volunteering to build for a cause. This activity is dynamic and can cover a wide area, so this idea needs the supervision of an expert. Some fabulous building ideas include constructing homes, classrooms, and children’s playgrounds. This event aims to provide a helpful facility for those who need but cannot afford it.

Here are more group volunteering activities.

18. Drag Brunch

Drag brunches are among the most unique team building activities. Most participants prefer to use these entertaining drag shows to celebrate Pride Month. However, teams can enjoy this event at any time of the year to express their individuality and appreciate the drag community.

Drag performances are entertaining. Participants who belong to the drag community can sign up and perform at the event.

Team members can attend drag brunches for a show and to enjoy the meals. Dressing up and taking photos are among the best ways to make the event fun and memorable.

Here are more ways to celebrate Pride Month at work.

19. Ostrich Riding

Riding ostriches is among the quirkiest team building ideas. The sport is slowly gaining popularity on most continents, usually as a tourist attraction.

Ostrich’s rides are fast and thrilling. Riders must sit on the bird’s back and maintain balance as the ostrich rushes around. Participants can race or engage in slow rides. However, the game has a weight limitation. The ideal rider should weigh 165 pounds to avoid hurting the birds, although bigger and stronger ostriches can carry up to 198 pounds.

20. Fishing

Fishing is a fun activity that requires a little skill and patience. Fishing with team members is a great way to bond. Teams can share drinks, have brainstorming sessions or do interactive games like trivia alongside the main activity.

This experience is chance- based and this aspect makes it super exciting. For example, a newbie can catch a big fish, and a veteran can catch none or vice versa. Nonetheless, participants should focus on having a good time to enjoy the outcome.

21. Real Treasure Hunt

The real treasure hunt is among the most unexpected team building exercises. Unlike the mock treasure island games, participants will be looking for treasures such as jewelry, money, and electronics. The host hides the treasures in several secret spots and then issues the participants with clues and maps. Group members can play individually or as a team to discover the valuables. Giving participants a hint of the hidden prizes can pique interest and make the hunt more exciting.

Check out this list of treasure hunt apps.

22. Sumo Wrestling

Sumo wrestling is among the most amusing, unusual team building ideas. This fun activity is probably the only chance for team members to outshine colleagues with their wrestling prowess without getting in trouble with HR. Teams can plan the event with local sumo companies and hold the event at the office hall or outdoors as preferred.

Putting on the right sumo gear like helmets, gloves, and inflatable sumo suits is necessary for team members’ comfort and safety while wrestling.

23. Car Racing

Car races are fun activities for teams. Participants can enjoy speeding beyond traffic limits for a prize or title by heading to a controlled course.

Participants unable or unwilling to drive at high speeds can opt to watch the races. If the team members are inexperienced car racing drivers, then the group can first take coaching classes at a nearby car racing academy or with the venue’s instructors.

Like all driving rases, always advise team members to wear helmets and fasten the seatbelts for safety.

24. Canoeing

Among the most unexpected team building ideas to connect team members is canoeing. This paddling activity is beneficial for members who are unfamiliar with each other. Teams can split into pairs and take the two-person canoes. In addition, participants can include interactive activities and conversation starters like ‘This or that’ and descriptive Bingo.

Canoeing also helps the participants to collaborate in steering the vessel, especially under challenging waterways or lousy weather.

25. Roller Coaster

If you ever rode on a roller coaster as a kid, then you may be familiar with the kind of thrill the activity gives. Teams can replay play their childhood memories using these unconventional team building ideas. When having these activities in an amusement park, you can include other recreational activities like merry-go-rounds to accommodate team members who may have conditions that restrict riding a roller coaster.

Conclusion

Non-ordinary, daring adventures empower team members to discover their strengths and how to use them to benefit the team. These unusual team building ideas also nurture creativity, responsibility, and trust among team members, which inspires team unity. Participants should focus on acquiring skills rather than winning and take the safety precautions seriously to get the most fun out of these unusual team building activities.

For more ideas, check out virtual team building activities and ways to improve team cooperation.

FAQ: Unusual team building activities

Here are frequently asked questions about unusual team building activities.

What are some unusual team building ideas?

Fun, unusual activities include real treasure hunts, canoeing, sumo wrestling, aerial yoga, and drag brunches. These exercises are unpopular and can create a pleasant surprise for participants.

How do you plan interesting team building activities?

The planner must first assess team members’ interests to include interesting and inspiring activities. The planners should also factor in the team’s budget and time availability. Finally, organizations should ensure that participants adhere to all safety measures, especially for extreme activities.

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Author: Grace He

Grace is the Director of People & Culture at TeamBuilding. She studied Industrial and Labor Relations at Cornell University, Information Science at East China Normal University and earned an MBA at Washington State University.

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