Aug. 25, 2014

Now that our athletes are finishing up with their competition, they are beginning to adventure to the off-site Culture and Education Programs, one being the Adventure and Treasure Hunt activity. Focused around teamwork, communication and leadership, the treasure hunt sends our athletes on a two-mile adventure through the forest where the athletes are provided a map and compass to find their way to each of the checkpoints. 

After the treasure hunt, the teams must complete several activities. Walking on two planks requires teams to communicate, bouncing a tennis ball on a drum held by strings requires teams to work in unison, and picking up water bottles without touching specific areas of the ground requires creativity and ingenuity.

The first U.S. athletes to head to the treasure hunt CEP were our men’s rugby players. Sione Masoe attested to how competitive the activity got between not just the U.S. athletes, but between the other countries participating in the activity as well. Team members had to work together to weave their way through the woods to the checkpoints, in which they received tiles that built a picture in the end.

The picture is a culmination of all the pieces collected by all of the teams individually and comes together to form one large mosaic. After speaking with our athletes, they all really liked the idea of teams accomplishing the tasks to come together and build one piece at the end.

Another rugby athlete, Vili Helu, said he “liked the beating drum because it involved communication skills as well as teamwork.” With 10 individuals trying to make one drum move in unison, this activity challenges teams to work together and try one idea at a time — skills that are beneficial both on and off the field.

At the end of the activity, all athletes sit together to have a quick snack, and very quickly the athletes begin intermingling. To have the athletes from all around the world come together through this experience is what these CEP activities are all about, so it is great to see our athletes bringing home these memories from their YOG experience.