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25 May 2020

8 practical and fine outdoor games you can play with your family or friends

boy playing with a water gun

Photo by Helga

As summer is waiting just around the corner, it’s time to plan and prepare for the warmest months of the year. It isn’t only about escaping the city for a few weeks, there are actually a lot of things that we are waiting for all year round. Just picture yourself enjoying the nice hot weather outdoors with your friends and family. Now add the perfect outdoor game and some refreshing popsicles and voila – you have the definition of a perfect summer day.

boy playing with a water gun
Photo by Helga

We must give credit to good outdoor games as they are the reason for creating the best memories, aren’t they? That’s why we have gathered a list of great outdoor games, some of which you might recognize, but might be new to the young generation. Let’s get started!

What are the ‘DOs’ of playing outdoor games?

I think we can all agree that just because we’re adults, that doesn’t mean that everything we do has to revolve around work. In fact, learning how to play can truly benefit our relationships, mood and even our jobs. Nowadays, life has become so hectic, and we focus on work and family commitments so much, that we just never seem to have time for pure and careless fun. However, play isn’t only important for kids, it can also be a crucial source of relaxation for adults as well. So let’s find out why playing at any age is essential:

Improve brain function

Engaging in fun activities that challenge the brain, such as completing puzzles or playing cards can prevent memory problems and improve brain function. It can also stimulate the mind and boost creativity. It’s a well-known fact that children learn best when they are playing, but this applies to adults, too. You might learn a new task better when it’s fun and you are in a playful and relaxed mood.  

 Relieve stress

When we do something fun, such as playing, we trigger the release of endorphins, which are the body’s natural ‘feel-good’ hormones. Endorphins can even temporarily relieve pain, and promote a general sense of well-being.

 An energy boost

 Let’s face it, somewhere between our childhood and adulthood, we simply stopped playing. And nowadays, whenever we manage to steal some leisure time, we’re more likely to spend it in front of the TV or computer instead of playing outside. As George Bernard Shaw once said “We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing”. Playing with friends and family can increase your energy levels and vitality and help you function twice as well. And the benefits in children’s health are endless!

Teach your children how to cooperate with others and improve social skills

It is through play that children learn how to function and behave with others, to cooperate with each other, follow rules and socialize in groups. During childhood play, children learn about verbal communication, teamwork and body language. When you are an adult, you can just continue to develop and refine these skills with the help of play and playful communication.

 8 fun outdoor games for any age

There are many different types of outdoor games. Some of them are great for parties, since they are all about winning points or prizes, some of them you can DIY or buy, and there are outdoor games that you can randomly play on any day, and don’t require any kind of equipment or preparation beforehand.

Lawn twister

An excellent way to add a new ‘twist’ to an old favourite, and it’s actually pretty self-explanatory. Just paint a twister board onto your lawn by following these instructions and enjoy family reunions all summer long!

Scavenger hunt

This is a very popular game for people of any age, especially kids. Treasure hunts are an excellent choice for parties or summer vacations and staycations. A scavenger hunt should be easy to organize and even easier to play. The toughest part is probably coming up with creative ideas. There is an array of backyard scavenger hunt checklists online. However, creating your own has a few benefits. First, you can customize it to your yard, or wherever you want it to take place. Second, you can get bigger kids involved in planning, it will double the fun, and teach your kids to create their own games by example. Consider these tips to help you prepare an awesome, memorable scavenger hunt for your friends and family. This indoor/outdoor treasure hunt kit is a great starter, complete with 100 reusable clue cards, treasure map puzzle board, gold coins and loot bag. 

Treasure Hunt Game GoTrovo - Scavenger Hunt for Kids Indoors and Outdoor
Scavenger hunt View on Amazon

Candy balloon relay

Is there a kid who doesn’t love balloons? They are always fun, no matter the age, especially when you have to race to pop them. You need to divide everyone in two teams for this outdoor game. Then, give each player a balloon with a piece of candy stuffed inside. This means that you will need to do some preps before the game, but it’s worth it and it doesn’t take too much time.

Each player has to run to a designated spot, pop their balloon, open their candy and eat it. Then they must run back to tag the next player. The winning team is the one which pops all their candy balloons. 

This pack of 100 balloons comes with a pump which will make it a lot easier to inflate a whole bunch quickly.

100 Balloons with a Pump
100 Balloons with a Pump
View on Amazon

Tip: Always, always make sure to choose candies which aren’t considered as choking hazards.

Play ‘tag’ with colourful water balloons

 There are several variations of the game ‘tag’, but nothing is as fun as something messy. For this outdoor game you will need balloons filled with water, and you can make it one step more fun by adding a little bit of food colouring. Just make sure to remind everyone to wear ‘play’ clothes. 

The rules are simple, there should be one person who is ‘It’ and they must tag someone by throwing a colourful water balloon at them. Once the person is tagged with colour, they become ‘It’. The game ends when all water balloons are gone, and the winner is the person who doesn’t get tagged!

This pack of 132 water balloons will provide endless fun many rounds of ‘tag’. Play responsibly!

132 Pack Water Balloons
132 Pack Water Balloons
View on Amazon

A giant Jenga

Jenga is a game of skill and strategy, and you can play it on any occasion with friends and family. In this game, you must build a tower, and then take out the pieces one by one, place them on top and hope you are not the one who makes it all fall down. You can get creative and make your own set of blocks, or simply order one online.

Giant Jenga
Giant Jenga View on Amazon

Squirt gun painting

Are your kid’s friends coming over and you want to surprise them with the ultimate boredom buster? This creative outdoor activity will be as fun and exciting as it is engaging. You will need a little bit of preparation beforehand, but nothing too complicated or expensive. 

Make sure you provide squirt guns, watercolor paper, liquid watercolors and an easel and you are good to go! The children will have so much fun creating a squirt gun painting. Don’t forget to save their work, and store the equipment somewhere the kids can easily access it next time they feel bored. 

This pack of 12 squirt guns is enough for a whole day of entertainment at a birthday party! Make sure you use washable watercolour paint like this one, so you don’t get surprises at the end 🙂

Kids Plastic Water Squirt Gun
Kids water guns View on Amazon
Crayola Washable Kids Paint
Crayola Washable Kids Paint
View on Amazon

Tip: If you don’t want to invest in squirt guns, plastic spray bottles are a great, practical alternative, since they work just as well.

Boochie

 This fun new game can be played both outdoors and indoors, and it can involve players of any age, which makes it suitable for the whole family. Boochie is highly rated and recommended by many people, since the good old ‘playing ball’ has been upgraded with some new modern details. This game will have you kicking, tossing, throwing and bowling like never before. It comes with a special wrist tracker that gives you a different throwing challenge during every round. And the fun part is that it’s played in teams, so choose your team wisely!

Boochie game
Boochie set View on Amazon

Hit the can

This game is an excellent choice for outdoor parties, and it’s suitable and fun for both children and adults.

Preparation: You will need six empty tin cans of the same size to be your targets. You can even decorate them, i.e. wrap them in coloured paper, or decorate them in the party motives.

For the setup you need a small table, and something to cover it (optionally). Then, stack up the cans in the shape of a pyramid. Give children three bean bags to toss per game. And depending on the setup of the stand, they should win some prizes based upon how many cans they can knock down in three tries.

Tip: You can make the game even more difficult by adding a rule that players should knock the entire group of cans of the stand, or make them stand a bit further, so it’s a bit more challenging to knock the cans.

Don’t miss out on fun this summer, play outdoor games!

Have we all agreed that there is probably nothing better than spending time outside with our friends and family on a summer day? Don’t forget to include an outdoor game during your get-togethers, as they can benefit you and your children in several ways. Besides, spending time this way with your loved ones will create memories you will cherish for a lifetime! 

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