Hand Hypnotist

This is a fantastic game from Augusto Boal with additional variations from Patti Styles.

Everyone in pairs, facing each other at a 2 metre distance or so.

One person raises one of their hands so their palm faces the other person. The second person looks at the palm of the first person’s hand. The first person them moves around the room, adjusting the height and angle of the hand. Their follower attempts to keep the same distance between their face and the other person’s hand, and the same angle.

The leader should look after the follower, and prevent them from bumping into anything or anybody else.

After a couple of minutes swap over roles so the leader becomes the follower.

Top Tips

  • Look after each other.
  • Try to find what brings joy to the follower. Some people love crawling around the room, some people hate it. Pursue what looks like fun to them.
  • If you are leading also watch where you are going so you don’t bump into other people.

Teaching Purpose

  • Trust.
  • Listening.
  • Focus.
  • Support.
  • Teamwork.
  • Connection.
  • Play.
  • Bringing joy to your scene partner.
  • Making each other look good.


Patti Styles teaches a really fun free-flowing version of this game where the rules are worked out by the group and made up as they go along. At first people are in pairs as above but gradually they swap over, and maybe one person guides two people, and they are guiding someone else, and people connect from across the room and there are lots of interconnecting people and patterns.

This teaches to not rely on a teacher or the rules in a game, but instead to play and find your own joy together.

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