Team Building at UWS Ropes Course

Posted at: 09/26/2013 8:13 AM
Updated at: 09/26/2013 8:48 AM

Hands-on teambuilding isn't always easy to come by when you're stuck in an office all day.  However, the University of Wisconsin Superior's (UWS) recreation department has just the challenge to bring co-workers, teams and other organizations together.  

This summer the UWS reopened their on-campus challenge course after the summer flooding of 2012 ruined their old course. UWS Outdoor Recreation Specialist Nathan Field manages the course and says the course was redesigned with teambuilding as a priority.

"With that our builder came out and rebuilt our course for us and he kind of did it in a way that would add more team building aspects to it," Field said.

Even Good Morning Northland hosts Brittany Falkers and Ben Dery strapped in to try out the redesigned course and to do a little team building of their own.

The rebuild of this course now allows for more participants to test their balance and nerves.  Field says groups usually take about two hours to go through the course, but they're working on developing and all-day eight hour course as well.
"We're able to allow more people to attend our course at one time," Field said. "Our current course, now, can hold about 48 people up there."

The course is all about taking people out of their comfort zone for some high-energy fun.  It's a unique opportunity to bring a group of people closer together.
"Our goals are really to one, provide that shared experience," Field said.  "Two, open peoples eyes and facilitate an experience that provides people new insight to who they are as a person."

Field and his team of trained professionals are there to help participants thought every step, which is helpful, especially while you're hanging 30 feet above the ground. 

"We are all trained for the Association of Challenge Course Technology," Fields said. "One of the first things we'll have people do is kind of inch their way out and make sure they're feeling kind of comfortable with what's going on."

Watching people go though the course and helping them move through it is rewarding for Fields and a big goal for him is seeing relationships evolve during the challenge.  "Providing them to come and share in an experience that they man not have had at the work place.  Providing them a very unique shared experience that they probably wouldn't get from just hanging out at the coffee machine or the water cooler," Field said.

The course is filled with 23 different low and high elements designed to enhance teambuilding and it all finishes with a 400 foot zip line at the end. 

"I'm happy to run this course all year long and if people want to come out here in negative 30 degree weather I'll be out here with them," Field said.  "But for the most part we typically run from about April to the end of October, just based on our weather and who really wants to be out here."

To learn more about the UWS challenge course and how you can take part CLICK HERE.