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Top 10 Physical Activities for Kids

Written by: Editorial Staff

May 27, 2011
Filed Under Outdoors 


One of the top ten physical activities for kidsContributed by Cindi Pearce, Top 10 Guru

When the weather breaks and sunshine beckons us outdoors it’s time to start playing.

You may opt to play with your children play, or you may be the more sedentary type and eternal sideline observer, preferring to sit on the deck with a cold iced tea in your hand, barking orders and settling disputes between your bickering children. Whatever your approach to summer, keep in mind the top ten physical activities for kids:

10. Hop scotch

One of the top ten physical activities for kids

This game might be a little girlie from a boy’s perspective, but it’s still a lot of fun. This is a children’s game that involves tossing a small object of some sort into the numbered spaces of a rectangular pattern that you have drawn with chalk on the sidewalk. The objective is to hop scotch from one section to the next and, usually while standing on one foot, picking up the object. Balance is required.

9. Four square

One of the top ten physical activities for kids

Draw a square six feet wide and then divide the square into four equal size small squares. Each square should be numbered. You will need a volleyball or soccer ball. There are four players and each stands in a square. The player in square four serves the ball. He bounces it in his square once and then hits it toward one of the other squares. Whoever receives the ball hits it to one of the other squares; it doesn’t matter which one. If you hit the ball, and it goes out of bounds or if you fail to hit the ball before it bounces in your square a second time you are out. Once you are out, you move to the last square, which is number 1. The objective is to hold the server’s position.

8. Tether ball

One of the top ten physical activities for kids

Install a 10 foot vertical pole in your yard and suspend a tether ball, which is comparable to a volley ball, from a cord from the top of the pole. Each player has to stay on his half or side of the playing area. One player hits the ball around the pole and toward the other player who, hopefully, hits it in return. If he doesn’t or can’t and the ball coils completely around the post his opponent wins.

7. Badminton

One of the top ten physical activities for kids

This is kind of like volleyball except you use a cork which is called a shuttle, and you hit it across the net using a racket. A match in badminton involves three games and each player or team that wins two out of three games is the winner. If the shuttle is hit beyond the court boundaries this is a fault. Other faults include the shuttle passing under or through the net; the shuttle is hit twice by the same player or twice by each player on a team; if it touches the player or his clothing or touches walls or ceilings, when played inside, this is a fault. The players cannot touch the net or their partner, including his racket and cannot go onto the opponent’s course.

6. Tag

One of the top ten physical activities for kids

You’re it. This is definitely a game for the younger set because it requires a lot of running or if played in a swimming pool, a lot of fast swimming. Tag is a high energy game but one that kids have been playing outdoors for centuries and one that will continue to be played as long as there are children.

5. Croquet

One of the top ten physical activities for kids

One might think of croquet as a laid-back lawn game that the privileged set played on sultry Sunday afternoons at the turn of the century barely breaking a sweat as they genteelly swatted the ball. But don’t kid yourself. This game can get quite competitive and cutthroat. Introduce your children to this game and they will love it. Keep an eye on the mallets. They can be deadly.

4. Volleyball

One of the top ten physical activities for kids

Engage in a zealous game of volleyball. Each team has six players. The court is divided in half by a net. The objective is to send the ball over the net in a fashion that makes it hard for the opposite team to return the ball. Each team gets to hit the ball three times as they attempt to get the ball over the net. Usually that means three people get to hit the ball but not necessarily. One person can hit it twice or even three times. When the receiving team wins a volley it gets to serve the ball. Players rotate their position on their side of the court in a clock wise fashion. When a volley is won that team gets one point. A team must reach 21 points to win. Win two out of three games and you are the champ.

3. Touch football

One of the top ten physical activities for kids

Think of the Kennedy clan and its obsession with playing touch football. Every video that you see of this celebrated family involves a game of football, which can be a lot of fun if you avoid tackling. Mothers and grandmothers don’t want to be tackled. However, young daughters might not mind, especially if their boyfriends are playing. You could be like Jacqueline Kennedy and sit on the porch, wisely avoiding the melee.

2. Softball or baseball

One of the top ten physical activities for kids

America’s greatest pastime. It doesn’t matter how old you get, if you can still swing a bat and run (maybe not that fast—appoint a designated runner) you and your children can have a great time playing ball. Establish the bases, a pitcher’s mound, grab a ball, glove and bat and you’re ready to hit the diamond, make-shift as it might be.

1. Hide and seek

One of the top ten physical activities for kids

This game will never go out of vogue. Your children can play it during the daylight hours or at night in the safety of your backyard, taking advantage of the cover of darkness, which creates better hiding places. If you decide not to participate in the game you can relax in your lounge chair and watch the fun.


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