Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Ships and Sailors

Captain's Coming!
Ships and Sailors is another children's game we are adapting for tennis purposes. Thanks to my student Joanna S. for explaining it to me. It is basically a more complex version of Simon Says. I like it for a large group warm-up.

One person (Coach or player) acts as the caller, calling out commands. All others must follow the commands. Last player completing each command, or any player failing to perform the correct command, is knocked out of the game. Last player remaining, wins.

The list of commands is impressive and complex. You can eliminate some of those requiring large numbers of players if your group is small.

Captain's Coming! - all players salute
At Ease
At Ease - all players assume 'at ease' position
This is the similarity to Simon Says. If at any time the caller says Captain's Coming!, players may not perform any other command until caller says At Ease.  Any player performing another command after Captain's Coming without first getting the At Ease command is out of the game.
Wimbledon champ Andy Murray demonstrates
Hit The Deck

Ships - move to ad side of court
Sailors - move to deuce side of court
Seasick - yep, you guessed it - pretend to be sick to your stomach
Hit The Deck - players lie face down on the ground.

The following commands require 2 or more players. So players must not only remember what to do for each command; they must quickly find other players to group with. If you have a small group, here is where you can eliminate some commands to simplify the game.
Titanic of course

Titanic - 2 players. One holds arms out in a T shape; other stands behind and wraps arms around T player's waist.
Man Overboard - 2 players. One lies face down on ground; other stands with one foot on player's back. You may be reminded of the Captain Morgan pose.
3 Men Rowing - 3 players stand in single file and make a rowing motion.
4 Men Eating - 4 players stand in a circle and pretend to eat.
Imagine the keg is a second player
and you've got it for Man Overboard
5 Men Pointing North - group of 5 all pointing same direction; if they are lucky it may be north :)