1st Gov Games begins on Wednesday

Dubai: More than 1,000 government workers will ditch their desks today (Wednesday) and hit Kite Beach to square off in friendly rivalries to become the 1st Gov Games Champions and bring home Dh2 million.

The world’s first Gov Games is an inter-government competition designed to promote mental and physical agility among government employees launched by Shaikh Hamdan Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Executive Council.

The four-day event brings together 143 local and 10 international teams that will battle it out in a world-class course of purpose-built obstacles that will test their team spirit, creativity, collaboration, grit, stamina, and agility.

The Gov Games will feature 90 men’s and 66 women’s teams, which make up 156 teams representing local, federal, and international governments.

The nationalities represented at the Government Games include Emiratis, British, Americans, Canadians, Thais, Saudis, Egyptians, Nigerians, Filipinos and others.

The top six men’s and six women’s teams will proceed to the final round which will determine the winning men’s and women’s teams who will be crowned “Gov Games Champions” and will be presented with a team prize of Dh1 million each, to be distributed equally among the participants.

The Executive Council will continue to oversee the organisation of the Gov Games in partnership with the Dubai Sports Council and Meraas as the official sponsor.

Marwan Bin Eisa, Director of the Gov Games, earlier said the initiative is a “reflection of Dubai’s leadership in defining a new understanding of government work, built on creative collaboration, teamwork, and innovation, which are the principles underpinning this competition.”

The competition is one-of-a-kind in that it does not feature traditional sports activities but intricately designed obstacles that target specific strengths of the teams not only muscle power but also brain power.

The obstacles, similar to the popular Spartan Races, used more than 35 tonnes of fabricated steel to form the 10 obstacles that make up the 40,000-square metre course. Some 840,000 litres of water have been used for the obstacles.

Teams will collectively have to carry around 75,000 kilograms of weight and travel more than 1 million metres, as well as climb heights exceeding 75,000 metres. The unique obstacle course will be a true test for teams’ mental and physical strength and agility.

A day before the competition began, members of the Dubai Airports Government Games teams took one of their last training sessions to Dubai World Central airport this week, as part of the final preparations ahead of games.

The two teams made up of seven men and seven women, all employees of Dubai Airports from a variety of departments including Airside Operations and the Fire Service, took their workout away from the gym and spent a hot morning being put through their paces at the facility in DWC.

The teams were given new tests including pulling and pushing eight-wheeler fire trucks either individually or by group to push their limits.


Day 1:

Qualifying round for 66 women’s teams who must tackle 7 obstacles to make it to the final.

Days 2 and 3:

Qualifying rounds for 89 men’s teams who will have to navigate 9 obstacles

Day 4:

The six top performing men’s and women’s teams will compete in the final, which will see the teams take on one mega obstacle—Storm.


– Stabiliser: This obstacle will have teams deciding between zipping through individually or using a paced team-approach

– Burner: Team captains will be faced with intense pressures to make the important decision of choosing the best team members to complete this challenge

– Iron Grip: Teams will need to think collectively to find the best way to take on this obstacle. It’s team vs. time in this one

– The Wall: Teams will be faced with the decision of using speed or strength to cross this obstacle’s barrier

– Guillotine: Team captains along with their teammates will have to use their initiative to complete the obstacle in a limited time

– Brain Mania: Teams will have to choose between relying on the strongest person or the collective strength of the team for this obstacle

– Human Ladder: Team members will have to create a human ladder that will test the balance between their agility and strength

– Below Zero: This obstacle will test the teams’ strength, determination and trust as they work together to make the right decision

– Muscle Crusher: As the name suggests, this obstacle will put the team under physical and emotional stress and can only be overcome through harmony and team work

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