Whether it’s a rainy day or you just want to do something different, creating an at home obstacle course can be a great way to have fun with the kids.
Home obstacles courses really became popular when distance learning took over our lives. However, this is still a great activity for the family. Kids love to be challenged and parents love to burn off some of that never ending kid energy. It’s really a win-win situation. There is also a wonderful creativity element behind building a course that gives your kids opportunities to problem solve.
Here are some ideas to get you started.
Think Like a Kid
The home obstacle course doesn’t have to be fancy and you don’t need to buy special equipment. Just think like a kid. We see a couch, they see a trampoline. We see pillows on the floor, they see hurdles. Why walk to the next obstacle, when you could do a dance to get there? I like to include obstacles that encourage the kids to do different things: jump over, go under, weave in & out, push items out of the way. Stuffed animals can make great agility cones and a pile of shoes can be a wonderful “pit” to jump over.
Let the Kids Create
It’s also great to let the kids take the lead on some ideas. Hand them a piece of paper and a pencil to see what plans they have for an obstacle course. It can even turn into an obstacle lab by testing different obstacles out. Perhaps some obstacles aren’t challenging enough or ask them why they should avoid certain areas of the house or yard. They can even plan where the starting and finish lines will be or the order of the obstacles.
If its a rainy day or too hot to be outside, take advantage of the material in your house to create an interesting course. Make sure to move breakable items out of the way, so more focus can be on the fun.
- Chairs lined up make a great tunnel for army crawls.
- Hop over the pillows of different sizes for indoor hurdles.
- Set up stools to have the kids weave around.
- Keep your feet on the “stepping stones” (Make circles on the floor with yarn or string)
- Plow through the boxes— Take all those shipping boxes you are getting now and stack them up for an epic finish to the course.
Being outdoors certainly increases the options for obstacles. Having natural elements mixed with things from around the patio create a course with unique challenges.
- Jump over the firewood or logs
- Jump on the stepping stones (spray paint dots on the grass, or lay out hula hoops)
- Use an outdoor table for a tunnel
- Have them get on their bike or scooter to go to one end of the yard and back. (Think Triathlon)
- Kick a soccer ball, kickball or basketball across the yard.
- Change up the course by challenging kids to do it by skipping, hopping or crawling.
- Put some chalk on the sidewalk for crazy paths to follow
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Run the course
Once you have your course built, the real fun begins. Get everyone in the family to try it, even the dog! Use a stopwatch to time everyone and see who can complete it the quickest or if each individual can improve their time. Try to switch it up and do the course backwards or mix up the order of obstacles. The possibilities are really endless with this great activity and are sure to provide hours of fun. So, get those creative ideas flowing and get moving.