The lockdown restrictions we’re currently facing as a country mean many of us are focusing on ways to stay entertained at home. While there are indoor options a-plenty like watching maybe a little too much Netflix or learning to bake something new, getting outdoors and doing a little exercise can also be great for the body and brain.
There are many fun backyard games and activities that you can do with items you already have lying around the house, from simple ball games to scavenger hunts! Below are four DIY outdoor games and activities to get you started!
A simple, age-old activity, but it’s a classic for a reason. The simple act of kicking the ball can be a great way to spend some time while working on your coordination skills as well. You can kick the ball to a partner, or take turns passing it between several people. If you don’t have a soccer ball, you could find a football to toss about, or even a tennis ball to play catch with. Make up additional rules, such as you’re not allowed to drop it, for an extra challenge!
For many, handball probably makes you think of junior school days, but this simple game can be enjoyed by kids and adults, alike. All you need is a section of concrete, some chalk to draw up the squares, and a tennis ball – although, hand-eye coordination is a benefit! For those who need a refresher on the rules, the game can be played with two people (the server and the receiver), or with four people in a square (for Ace, King, Queen/Jacks, and Dunce). For two-player, one person starts serving the ball and the game is played by hitting it back and forth until somebody gets out. The person who wins is then the server of the next round and so-on. For four-square handball, the ace serves the ball to whomever they choose, and that player then hits it to the player of their choosing. This continues until a player gets out. If a player gets out they move to the dunce position, and all other players move up a square.
Particularly good for kids, but we’re not going to judge any adults who find the fun in a good scavenge! This backyard game requires just two people: one to hide the objects, and the other to look for them. For a scavenger hunt, one person hides small toys or wrapped food items around the yard, and then the other person goes looking for them! To make it even more interesting you could do a treasure hunt where one person makes up a series of clues that leads to the prize. Once all clues have been placed, the gamemaster can give the first clue to the hunter, for them to find the next and the next and the next until they win! For those in larger households, you could even make two of each clue and split into teams to see who can solve the quest the fastest and get to the prize!
Okay, so maybe it’s not a game, but backyard camping can be a super fun way to spend an evening at home! Simply bring out the tent and the sleeping bags, and set up a spot just like you would if you were camping at a site. One added bonus about camping in your own backyard is easy access to the kitchen and other modern conveniences. That means easy hot chocolates and toasting marshmallows in the oven, rather than around a fire. This is another activity that can be fun for groups of all sizes and ages. Couples can enjoy a romantic night under the stars, and families with kids can spend time connecting with each other in an exciting way, and yet so close to home (and a flushing toilet!).
There’s no end to the number of backyard games and activities that can be enjoyed from the comfort of your own property. Whether you’re a fan of sports and want a bit of a challenge, like the idea of hunting for items and going on a riddle quest or just want to relax and unwind and pull out the tents you were planning to use for a rescheduled Easter getaway, there are DIY backyard games and activities for everyone.
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