We use cookies to give you the best experience and to help improve our website. By using our website you are accepting our cookies.  Learn More

20 Apr 2018 214
Developing Mindsets

Inject More Fun into Your Coaching

How fun theory can be used to help make recreational sport more appealing

Play can be a great engagement and motivational factor for getting people to be more active. My coaching philosophy includes the right to play more often. It is underpinned by the entitlement to have fun. I’m always playing. At work; at home; on holiday; in the office (I suspect to the annoyance of several colleagues); on the train (ditto for annoyed fellow passengers). I think you get the idea.

There are a number of ways coaches can think about fun theory and how it relates to practice. What is your fun theory? Does play and fun feature in your coaching philosophy?

I am always looking for opportunities for young people and adults to play and have fun. I look outside the sporting world for inspiration and often find myself wandering about in the world of play. New playgrounds are a draw for me. Playground designers are always looking for new fixtures and fittings to include in their offer to playground commissioners. 

I regularly stop at new playgrounds and look for the new fun element that I’ve not seen before. I love discovering new and playful things that these designers have created. One of my favourite things in playgrounds is seeing how the grownups quite often get involved. Many do not of course, but with a little encouragement many do.

Fun theory in action

Another example is in The Fun Theory Musical Stairs video clip.

They pose the question – can we get more people to choose the stairs if we make it fun? It was the normal case of an escalator being used more often than the parallel flights of stairs.

By adding sound, music and a sense of fun to stairs the use of stairs in this public space increased by 66%. A few people even paused to jump or do extra stairs because they got caught up in the playfulness and delight of this unexpected experience. (The effect of music and sound also has an effect, but I’ll save that for a future blog).

So think about how you encourage a playful attitude to your coaching and how you might include the fun theory into your coaching philosophy.

Unmissable Sessions

View our animation, in association with Sport England, encouraging you to be creative in your coaching and providing thoughts on how to make your sessions unmissable

Fun ideas and tips

Power Your Coaching with Premium Membership


Transform your coaching with unlimited access to 1000+ resources and 24/7 support, including hundreds of money-saving discounts