Human Knot is a fantastic, quick to set up game that will encourage teamwork, communication, and a lot of fun. In this game, youth quickly link hands randomly in a circle – and the fun comes when you try to untangle it all! Fast enough to do as an icebreaker, or you can pit multiple groups against one another in competition for a more full-featured game. Human Knot is the kind of game that you, as a youth leader can quickly memorize and have ready to go for any time, so be sure to keep reading and learn more about this fun, no-prep game.
Game Instructions (Read Aloud To Group)
We’re going to play a game called “Human Knot”! The goal of this game is for everyone to stand in a circle and grab hands with others the circle. However, that’s the easy part! After linking hands, you will then need to untangle from one another, forming a circle.
To begin, everyone in the “Knot” should stand shoulder to shoulder. Then, everyone lift your left hand and reach across the circle to take the hand of someone across the circle from you. Then, lift your right hand, reach across the circle and take the hand of someone across the circle from you. No one should be holding the hand of anyone directly next to them.
Once you’ve all linked hands, the goal is to untangle and form a circle. You may not let go of hands, but you may need to rotate your hands or change grips as necessary. If you break hands accidentally, simply re-grip as quickly as possible.
Be sure to use lots of communication and planning in order to untangle in an orderly manner. It is easier if you focus on one step at a time in untangling.
The game ends when everyone has untangled and formed a complete circle. If you happen to reach a point where it is just impossible to form a circle due to hand holds, link up in the best way possible to finish (it’s possible a hand grab was done wrongly at the beginning – that’s ok!)
You can create a competition among multiple “knots” by having them compete simultaneously to see who can finish the quickest.