Risk and Reward Tennis – Training Game


Risk and reward is all around us. How we balance each is crucial to our ability to deliver the successful outcomes we want.


Risk and Reward Tennis Objectives

Giving and receiving positive feedback can often make people feel a little uncomfortable. Consequently, people often avoid it, to save any perceived embarrassment. Yet positive feedback is an essential tool for helping to develop team morale and maintain high performance.

‘You’re’ a Hero!’ highlights how great it feels to receive praise, helping your learners to gain perspective on the feedback they provide and receive. Encouraging feedback doesn’t require a ‘song and dance’; it merely requires regular “well-done”, “great job” and “thank you” interactions.

Group Size

  • Maximum of ten

Risk and Reward Tennis Content

Ask your delegates to stand in a circle facing each other. Explain to them that you will give pass them a paper ‘tennis ball’. The delegates must hit the ball with the palm of their hand, towards a colleague, while shouting out learning content that they have covered in the training session, up until that point.

The person who receives the ball must immediately palm the ball to another colleague while shouting out another piece of learning content. This process is repeated until the group have made their way around twice. Each player must hit the ball at least twice, and a player cannot hit the ball twice in a row. All models, tools, and techniques, etc. are fair game. The trainer has the final say over what is allowed, and there can be no repetition of content. If the ball drops to the floor, the group must start again, if they have enough time left.

Let the delegates know that they have ten minutes to complete the task.

Full instructions are in the downloadable file.

Risk and Reward Tennis Content

  • Full instructions for running the training game, including suggested risk and reward options
  • Debrief instructions, including questions to encourage participation and debate between your learners
  • An explanation of the learning outcomes


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