Tag Archives: Baton Passing

3 Of The Best Relay Baton Games For Athletics

3 Games To Make Relay Training Really Fun

Relay Batons

1. Fast Link Up

Overview

A competitive team game during which the kids rehearse fast stationary baton exchanges in teams.

Equipment

  • Relay baton/s
  • Ground markers

Set-Up:

  • Divide the group into even teams, preferably of 4 or more in each.
  • The teams each line up behind a ground marker, standing in a single file, an arm’s length apart.
  • The person at the rear is given the relay baton.
  • All other participants stand looking to the front with their receiving hand raised behind them.

Game

  • On “Go” the kids pass the relay baton down the line as quickly as possible, using non-visual exchanges.
  • When the person at the front of the line receives the baton, they must quickly raise it above their head, signalling that the team has finished.
  • The first team to finish is the winner of that round.

Emphasise:

  • The receiver’s eyes should remain to the front.
  • The receiving hand is held steady.
  • The baton is placed firmly into the receiver’s hand. (But not too firmly!)
  • Use alternate hands during the pass.

HINT:  When the baton gets to the front, simply ask everyone to turn and face the other way. The relay baton is now at the rear of the line and the game can be repeated.

Skill Extension:

The kids have to run on the spot for the duration of each round.

Downward Baton Pass

2. Baton Versus Runner

Overview

A competitive racing game during which a pair of runners race a single runner. A game that teaches kids to exchange a baton at pace, with the baton-exchangers having to keep pace with the single runner.

Equipment

  • Relay baton/s
  • Ground markers

Set-Up

  • Mark out a 30-metre changeover zone on a track or a large flat grassed area.
  • Organise the kids into groups of three.
  • Two kids in each pair will perform a baton exchange through the changeover zone. The third child will race them in the adjacent lane/space.
  • The incoming runner/s and single runners must all begin running from the same distance back from their changeover zone (e.g. 20m).
  • The incoming runner/s start with a baton.
  • The outgoing runner/s can stand anywhere inside the 30m changeover zone.

Game

  • On “go”, the incoming runner/s and the single runner/s start their run.
  • The pair exchanging the baton and the single runner try to beat each other to the end of their respective changeover zones.

Emphasise

  • A fast smooth baton exchange.
  • Maintain running speed during the baton exchange.

relay baton pass

3. Relay “World Record”

Overview

Pairs compete for a group or “world” record for being the fastest at passing the baton through the 30-metre changeover zone. A game that highlights the importance of not slowing down during a baton exchange.

Equipment

  • Stopwatch
  • Ground markers

Set-Up

  • In pairs, the kids decide who will be the incoming and outgoing runners.
  • The incoming runner/s and single runners must all begin running from the same distance back from their changeover zone (e.g. 20m).
  • The incoming runner/s start with a baton.
  • The outgoing runner/s can stand anywhere inside the 30-metre changeover zone.

Game

  • The coach/teacher/leader uses a stopwatch to time the movement of the baton through the zone.
  • The timing should begin as the incoming runner enters the 30m changeover zone, and stopped when the outgoing runner leaves the zone.
  • The pair with the fastest time holds the “world record”.

Emphasise

  • A fast smooth baton exchange.
  • Maintain running speed during the baton exchange.

NOTE: In a group situation,  only one pair can usually be timed at once. Have pairs ready to go as soon as the previous pair has finished. Alternatively, organise multiple timers so that more than one pair can run at once.

Relay pass

Over To You!

Next time you are coaching a kids’ relay team, try these activities. I would love to hear how they go and how the kids react. Let me know by leaving a comment/reply or by using the contact details below.


If this post helped you please take a moment to help others by sharing it on social media. If you want to learn more I encourage you to leave questions and comments or contact me directly.


20150614_154020-1Darren Wensor is a sports development professional, coach educator, specialist coach of young athletes and founder of the blog coachingyoungathletes.com. Learn more about him here and connect with him on TwitterFacebookLinkedin, Anchor or via email.

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