What is an energizer?
It is a short, often physical exercise whose main goal is to distract the participants from the topic of the work they are doing for a while, change the environment a bit and improve the mood of the group.
When to use energizers?
Sometimes, during the project, the energy of the group decreases – people become less motivated, they do not want to comment on the topics discussed, they seem to be a bit impatient, they often reach for the phone… In such a situation it is not worth sticking to the schedule strictly and pressing work as planned without interruption until the goal is reached or the workshop session ends. It’s a good idea to ask the group how they are doing and whether they are willing to continue working. If not, give participants a break and/or offer them a short, energizing exercise. Sometimes it is also necessary in the morning, during the first classes 🙂 It is very important to remember that using of the energizer improves the mood of the participants, integrates them, engages them in movement and makes the subsequent work faster.
How to choose the right energizer?
Energizers should not be repeated within one project, so it is worth having at least a few good, proven methods of warming up participants. A good energizer should lead to a change in the group’s environment (e.g. when the work of groups takes place in a workshop room, the exercise should be carried out outdoors), and also involve them in a different way than before (e.g. in movement, when they worked intellectually). As in the case of integration, we must remember about the size of our group, the age of the participants and their special needs so that the activity is not too long, too complicated or completely different from the team’s expectations. Sometimes it is also worth relying on the experience of the participants – if someone wants to carry out their energizer, it will certainly be an interesting diversion 🙂