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20 games to keep your kids active


Looking for ways to be active as a family? We've got lots of family games to play indoors and outside that will get everyone moving and having fun together. 

It's important to be physically active, but that doesn’t have to be organised sports or something outside the family. It can be play and games. It's any activity that gets the heart to beat faster.

So take your pick of our 20 active play and game ideas for all ages, and all types of weather conditions. 

 

 

Obstacle Course

2+ players | Indoors or Outdoors

  1. Challenge the kids to create an obstacle course with household items. They could use tables to crawl under, cushions as steppingstones, masking tape for a tightrope, etc. For example, a cardboard box tunnel can be made by duct taping two or more boxes together, leaving the top flaps open so light can get in.
  2. On your marks, get set, go! When they've finished the obstacle course, the kids can time themselves doing the course. Find out who can get around the course the quickest. It can be a family affair with kids versuss parents to see who is the fastest!
  3. Challenge your kids to walk across it without losing their balance. They could walk forwards, backwards, sideways, or hop over the obstacles.

Play safely

 


 

Tightrope Walking

1+ players | Indoors or Outdoors

  1. Mark out your tightrope on the ground with a long piece of string or tape.
  2. Challenge your kids to walk across it without losing their balance - forwards, backwards, sideways, hopping over obstacles.
  3. Add some imagination by creating a course. Put some jumpers, beanbags or other items around the room. Call them islands. Then put some home-made tightropes between the islands, in straight lines, zig zags, waves. They can cross them in different ways, such as forwards, backwards, sideways, hopping or crawling.

Play safely

 


 

Keep it Moving

1+ players | Indoors

  1. Blow up a balloon.
  2. With one player, the game is simple – don’t let it touch the ground for as long as possible.
  3. With two or more players, each player has three lives and has to pass the balloon back and forth without using their hands.
  4. If you let the balloon touch the ground, you lose a life. The last player left wins.

Play safely

 


 

Kerbs

2 Players | Outdoors

  1. Stand on a kerb on opposite sides of the street (or both facing one kerb).
  2. Take turns throwing a football at the kerb, trying to hit the edge and have it bounce back into your hands.
  3. With each successful throw you get one point and another throw. First to ten wins.

Play safely

 


 

Crab Walk Races

2+ players | Indoors or Outdoors

  1. Show your kids how to crab walk. (Sit on the floor, put your hands behind you, push your hips and stomach up and start walking)
  2. Mark out a course with a start and finish line.
  3. Race! For older kids, you can make it tougher by having them balance a ball on their stomach as they walk. If it falls they have to go back to the start.

Play safely

 


 

Family Sports Day

4+ players | Outdoors

  1. Write down a list of activities. Here are some suggestions: egg and spoon race, wheelbarrow race, 3-legged race, sprint, hula-hoop, limbo, obstacle course, water balloon toss. Let your kids pick 5-10 to do as events.
  2. The kids could make the medals using foil and the winners’ podium using cardboard boxes.
  3. Let the games begin! Move from one event to the next. Keep track of who places first, second and third. Finish the day off with a medal presentation ceremony.

Play safely

 


 

Treasure Hunt

1+ players | Indoors or Outdoors

  1. Pick a theme based on what your kids like such as pirates, dinosaurs or their favourite movies. Having costumes and treasure based on the theme will make it all the more fun.
  2. Write, draw or show pictures of your clues. Place them around the house and hide the treasure. Clue example: ‘To find the first clue before you get old, go the place where we keep the food cold’.
  3. Send the kids off on the hunt. Give them hints or play ‘hot and cold’ if they’re struggling to find the clues.

Play safely

 


 

Family Musical Statues

3+ players | Indoors or Outdoors

  1. One player controls the music and while it plays, everyone busts out their best dance moves.
  2. When the music stops, everyone freezes.
  3. Whoever moves while the music is off is out. Play until there’s only one dancer left.

Play safely

 


 

ABC Hunt

1+ players | Indoors or Outdoors

  1. Challenge the kids to find items starting with a different letter. You can play this around the house or outside. Examples include: Apple, Book, Carpet, Desk, etc.
  2. You can change the game to items that start with letters that make up a word of the day that the kids can choose. Examples include football, holidays, etc.
  3. Time how long it takes them to complete the alphabet. If they can’t find anything for the tough letters like Q, X, Z, they can draw a picture of something that starts with that letter instead.
  4. This can be adapted to finding items that start with letters that make up the word of the day – ie football, holidays etc.

Play safely

 


 

Fitness Monopoly

3+ players | Indoors or Outdoors

  1. Write out about 20 different activities on cards and place them in the shape of a Monopoly board. Activities can anything from jumping jacks to planks to toe touches. To make it more challenging, divide them into three categories: orange for cardio (activities that raise your heartbeat), blue for improving your strength, and red to improve your flexibility. Here are some examples.
  2. Take turns rolling the dice and completing the activities you land on.
  3. Every time you pass go you get a token, first to ten tokens wins.

Play safely

 


 

Fitness Alphabet

3+ players | Indoors or Outdoors

  1. Create a weekly calendar with a different word for each day eg waddle, giggle, summer, puddles. You can ask the kids to think of the words – maybe have a theme per week. Here are some examples.
  2. Give each exercise a letter of the alphabet depending on your child’s age and ability (eg. A= 5 x jumping jacks, B=2 x pushups, C=8 x arm circles, D=7 x hop on one foot, E=6 x jump high, F=15 x marching steps, G=8 x squats, etc).
  3. Each day, as a family, everyone can do the word of the day. If children have different levels of ability, the older kids can do one or two rounds.

Play safely

 


 

Four square

4+ players | Outdoors

  1. Create four squares on the ground with chalk or tape. Have one player stand in each square while remaining players wait in line to the side.
  2. Serve by dropping the ball in your square and hitting it with any part of your body into another square. It should bounce once before that player hits it into another square.
  3. The player is out of the game if they hit the ball out of bounds, don’t let it bounce before returning, let it bounce more than once or if they catch it. They go to the back of the line and a new player swaps in.

Play safely

 


 

Indoor Bowling

2+ players | Indoors

  1. Choose your bowling alley. Halls and landings are great because they’re usually long and narrow.
  2. Use empty plastic bottles as pins and set them up in a triangle. If they tip over too easily you can fill them with a little water. 
  3. Like regular bowling, take turns trying to knock the pins over. You can use a tennis ball, a tight sock ball or a bigger ball. Earn 1 point for each pin or 10 for a strike. Whoever has the most points after 5 rounds wins.

Play safely

 


 

Balloon Waddle Races

2+ players | Indoors or Outdoors

  1. Mark out a start and finish line.
  2. Each player puts a balloon or a ball between their knees and races to the finish line. If they drop the ball/balloon, they go back to the start.
  3. Make it more challenging for older kids by adding obstacles to go around.

Play safely

 


 

Traffic Lights

3+ players | Indoors or Outdoors

  1. One player directs traffic by calling out ‘green’, ‘orange’ or ‘red’ to the other players.
  2. Green means run around as fast as you can, orange means walk in slow motion and red means freeze.
  3. Anyone caught moving on a red light is out and the last remaining player wins.

Play safely

 


 

Wall Ball

2+ players | Outdoors

  1. Take turns kicking a ball against the wall from wherever it stops.
  2. If you miss the wall, you’re out (more than 2 players) or your opponent gets a point (2 players).
  3. Last one standing or first to ten wins. Make it harder by marking a section of the wall to hit.

Play safely

 


 

Simon Says

2+ players | Indoors / Outdoors

  1. One player is ‘Simon’ who gives commands to everyone else (stand on one leg, jump up and down, etc).
  2. Players only obey commands that start with “Simon says”.
  3. Those who follow a command without “Simon says” are out and the last person left wins.

Play safely

 


 

Hopscotch

1+ players | Indoors or Outdoors

  1. Draw a grid of squares numbered 1-10 on the ground in chalk if outside or with masking tape if indoors.
  2. Start at 1. Take turns tossing a marker (stone, coin, small beanbag) into each square. Hop through the entire the grid. Pick up the marker on your way back.
  3. If the marker doesn’t land inside right square, that player misses a turn. If their foot lands outside the lines or in the wrong square when hopping, they repeat that turn on their next go.
  4. First to 10 wins.

Play safely

 


 

Follow the Leader

2+ players | Indoors or Outdoors

  1. Everyone lines up behind ‘the leader’.
  2. As the leader moves, everyone has to follow and copy his/her every action.
  3. Anyone who doesn’t copy an action is out and the last player left becomes the leader.

Play safely

 


 

Hot and Cold

2+ players | Indoors or Outdoors

  1. One player hides an object around the house or in the garden.
  2. The other players try to find it by asking if they’re ‘hot’ or ‘cold’ as they search.
  3. The colder they are (freezing, shivering, etc), the further away they are from the object. The hotter they are (roasting, burning up etc), the nearer they are to it.

Play safely

 




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