COVID-19

Games to Keep You Going

CIRA Ontario has published over 30 resources in an attempt to help those leaders working with children within schools, camps and many areas. Normally our resources are available for purchase, but to help you all during this difficult time, we have prepared this listing of games that we feel highlights activities that can be done in the home setting while adhering to social distancing guidelines.
And helps us to meet our mission of “Fun Active Participation for ALL”.

The following games are taken from A ROUND OF CIRCLE GAMES:

BUZZ – Players start by standing or sitting in a circle counting one at a time from one to sixty. However, for any number that has a 7 in it, or a multiple of seven, they must say “Buzz”. If a player makes a mistake everyone  performs 10 jumping jacks and the group starts again. VARIATION - Add “Bizz” to 5’s and multiples of 5.

EVERYBODY UP – Two participants of equal size sit facing each other with the bottoms of their feet touching. From this position, each duo links hands and tries to pull themselves into an upright standing position.Once groups are successful, try groups of three or more.

 

KNIGHTS, HORSES, CAVALIERS – Participants find a partner and walk around in circles. When the leader calls ‘knights’, ‘horses’ or ‘cavaliers’ they must find their partner and do the following action:

  • Knights - One player sits on the others knee.

  • Horseman - One player is horse and the other sits on them

  • Cavalier - One player stands and the other is held in their arms

 

The following game was taken from TAG, TAG & EVEN MORE TAG:

HEY PRINCIPAL (Mom, Dad, etc) – Runners shout out ‘Hey Principal can we cross the yard?’ Principal responds with ‘Only if…..’ If a player fits the description, they cross the yard free. If not they must run across without being tagged. Tagged players perform 5 push ups and return for the next round.

 

The following games are taken from GREAT GAMES by GREAT KIDS:

HUCKLE BUCKLE – Players get a partner and stand on opposite sides of the room or yard. Leader calls our ‘Huckle Buckle - nose to knee’ etc. Players run to the center and touch the called out parts.

 

SET AND SHOOT – Players face each other with a hand behind their backs. One player calls ‘SET’ and the other responds with ‘SHOOT’. AT this point both players

 

SHADOW TAG –  Players chase each other and try to step on each other's shadows. Each time your shadow gets stepped on you take a letter until you spell SHADOW.

 

The following games were taken from READY SET RELAY:

MIX IT UP – Players move from point A to point B and back again. Each time they must travel in a different manner.

INCHWORM – Two players sit on each other's feet with legs bent at the knees and holding hands. They wiggle back and forth like a see saw trying to move from point A to point B.

NEW! FLIPPING HOOPS – No need for teams. Start with a hula hoop close to the tosser. Toss any object into the hoop and flip it one length away. How far can you get?

 

NEW! NAIL DRIVER – Teach your children some handy skills. Have them run around the yard and then take a swing with a hammer at a nail(Use safety glasses). Each lap means one swing. How many laps to hammer in the nail.

 

The following games were taken from FOLLOW THE LEADER:

HEEL TOE – Players line up in heel toe formation and attempt to move from point A to point B without separating.

POINT A to POINT B – Participants work together as a group trying to move with a predetermined number of points of contact.

 

The following game was taken from WHY PAPER AND SCISSORS ROCK:

STRETCH – Partners stand heel to toe, with their front foot touching the toes of their opponent. Opponents play RPS. The winner moves their front foot behind their back foot and their opponent slides their front foot forward. Continue until one participant cannot continue.

TARGET GAMES

 
 

Participants in Target Games are trying to send (throw, roll, strike) an object towards a target as accurately as possible. Some Target Games are solitary in the sense that competitors try to hit the target on their own (archery, darts, bowling). Other Target Games add more strategy, because competitors are competing to get closer to the target (bocce, curling). In these Target Games, blocking an opponent from getting to the target or knocking the opponent away from the target add more complex skills to the game.

The following games were taken from TARGET GAMES:

SOCK BOCCE  

 

Equipment: four white socks, four socks, of a similar colour, one sock that is a completely different colour

FMS Skill: Underhand throw/roll

Tactical Focus: Adjusting technique based on results of previous bowls/throws

How to play:

  1. Decide which team will start

  2. A player from that team throws the target sock, the one that is different colour, to the other end of the playing area

  3. Someone from that team then throws their sock towards the “pallino” (target), trying to get as close as possible

  4. Now someone from the other team throws a sock and tries to get closer

  5. From now on, the team that is not closest to the target bowls their socks (they can be throw or rolled underhand).

  6. Play continues this way until both teams have bowled their four socks

  7. The team that is closest to the target is the only one that can score, scoring one point for each sock that is closer than any from the opposing team

  8. You can hit your opponent’s sock or the pallino to help you get closer

  9. The team that scored, throws the pallino to start the next frame

  10. Play to a certain number of points

SOCK BOWLING

 

Equipment: some socks or foam balls, five aluminum cans or other objects for bowling pins (plastic bottles, paper towel rolls, etc.)

FMS Skill: Underhand throw/roll, lunge

Tactical Focus: Follow-through towards the target; adjusting technique based on previous results; three-step approach to rolling

How to play:

  1. Find an area where socks or other objects will slide/roll nicely across the floor

  2. Place the five “pins” in a V-formation with space between them like when you go five-pin bowling

  3. Decide who will start

  4. Use a three-step approach when bowling at the pins:

    • Start with your feet together, facing the pins with the ball in front of you

    • Step with your dominant foot (same as your bowling hand) while bringing the ball back

    • Step with your non-dominant foot, bending low and bringing your bowling arm forward to release the ball towards the pins

  5. Bowl your object towards the pins, trying to knock as many down as you can at a time

  6. Remove any of the pins that were knocked down and bowl again if necessary (up to a total of three rolls)

  7. Reset the pins for the next player

  8. Continue this way for 10 frames or until a certain score

Scoring:

  • Basic – One point for each pin knocked down, maximum of five per frame.

  • Simple - One point for each pin knocked down with bonus points for strikes and spares. Get five extra points if you knock down all the pins on your first try (10 points). Get three bonus points if you get them all down on two tries (8 points).

  • Moderate – Each pin has a point value – five points for the headpin, three points each for the right and left pin, two points for each corner pin (total of 15 if all knocked down).

  • Complex – The point values are the same as in moderate, but now you add the bonuses involved with strikes and spares. When you bowl a strike, you get your 15 points, plus the points you get on your next two bowls in the next frame(s). Let’s say you get the headpin and then a corner pin for 7 points. That means your score in the previous frame was 15+7=22. The seven points also counts in the current frame with one more ball to bowl. When you get a spare, you get 15 points plus what you score on your bowl in the next frame.

SOCK CURLING  

 

Equipment: 4-8 white socks, 4-8 socks of a similar colour, a large button

FMS Skill: Underhand throw/roll, lunge

Tactical Focus: Guarding your “rocks” to outscore your opponent

How to play:

  1. Find an area where socks or other objects will slide nicely across the floor

  2. Place a button, CD, or some other target at the opposite end of the playing area

  3. Decide which team will start

  4. Get into the lunge position with the opposite leg of your throwing arm forward

  5. Slide the “rock” (your sock) along the surface towards the “button”

  6. Now someone from the other team slides one of their socks towards the target or at the opponent’s sock, knocking it away from the button

  7. Teams alternate turns until all the socks have been used

  8. The team that is closest to the button is the only one that can score, scoring one point for each sock that is closer than any from the opposing team

  9. To score, objects must be within 50 centimetres of the button

  10. You can hit your opponent’s sock out of the way or protect your own with your next shots

  11. The team that scored, starts the next end

  12. Play to a certain number of points or a certain number of ends

SOCKBALL FIGHT 

 

Equipment: lots of socks or foam balls, barriers (chairs, couch, furniture), timer, a flag (stuffed animal, pillow, etc.) for Yuki Ball variation

FMS Skill:  Overhand throw, dodge

Tactical Focus: Follow-through towards the target when throwing; avoid getting hit by a sock

How to play:

  1. Collect as many socks as possible for this game and divide them evenly between the two teams

  2. If possible, choose a referee, who will be responsible for timing and scoring the game

  3. Decide on your playing area (one or two adjoining rooms) and make sure it is clear of anything breakable

  4. The game is divided into three periods of two minutes

  5. On the referee’s signal, the timer and the period are started

  6. Players throw their socks at opposing players, trying to hit them

  7. Players can move anywhere within the playing area and can hide behind any barriers

  8. Players are allowed to pick up any stray socks and throw them at opposing players

  9. The referee will judge when scores are made and announce the time remaining at various intervals

  10. The team with the most points at the end of the two minutes, wins the period

  11. The team that wins the most periods is the winner of the game

  12. Periods can finish tied

  13. If there is no winner after three periods, play one-minute periods until a team has won

 

Scoring:

  • No points are scored for indirect hits (i.e., ricochets off furniture, bounces off the wall or floor, etc.).

  • One point is scored for directly hitting an opposing player anywhere other than the head or torso.

  • Five points are scored for hitting the torso of an opposing player

  • Two points are scored for catching a sock throw by an opposing player, however, dropping the sock counts as being hit and will be one point for the other team

  • Hitting a player in the head leads to a loss of 10 points

 

Yuki Ball Variation:

  1. The playing area is divided into two halves and each team has a “flag” on its territory

  2. The teams have two minutes to try to invade the other team’s territory and steal the flag, bringing it to their side

  3. Players that are hit by a sock while on their opponent’s territory must crabwalk back to their side of the playing area before rejoining the game

  4. If the hit player had the opponent’s flag, it is returned to where it started

  5. Each game consists of three periods of two minutes

  6. The winner is the team that wins the most periods or wins a tied game by stealing the flag in the overtime period

 

Alternate Rule:  Players are eliminated when they are hit in the torso by a sock, so a team can win a period by stealing their opponent’s flag or eliminating all opposing players.

COMING SOON

MINI-STICKS MINI GOLF  

 

Equipment: hockey mini sticks, table tennis balls, practice golf balls or similar-sized balls, various objects to create obstacles, empty food boxes to create the holes

FMS Skill: Striking with an object

Tactical Focus:  Follow-through towards the target when striking, adjust strike strength based on desire results

How to play:

  1. Create a 9-hole mini golf course within you house:

    • Use plastic cups to mark the tee area for each hole

    • Use furniture and other household items to create obstacles for the various holes on your course

    • Use large containers (i.e., buckets, baskets, etc.) as your holes

    • Be creative in your course design – you can have holes go in and out of rooms or down a set of stairs

  2. Choose who starts first

  3. The first player strikes their ball towards the hole

  4. All players tee off before anyone hits a second time

  5. Now the player furthest from the hole gets to strike

  6. Each player tries to hit their ball into the hole (either side is fine, and it does not have to go through one side and out the other

  7. The players record their score on each hole, the lower the score the better

  8. The player with the lowest score on the hole, tees off to start the next hole

  9. Continue this way until all the holes have been played, the player with the total lowest score wins

 

Game modification: You can use the balls, hockey mini sticks, and holes from boxes to set up a croquet field. The boxes become the wickets and the mini sticks are your mallets. You will need to find a couple of things (i.e., paper towel roll, plastic bottle) to be the stakes at either end.

LID DISC GOLF 

 

Equipment: Lids from various household objects (i.e., margarine containers, coffee containers, etc.), buckets, baskets, boxes or other open containers for the holes

FMS Skill:  Throwing (backhand)

Tactical Focus: Follow-through towards the target when throwing, adjust throw based on desire results

How to play:

  1. Create a 9-hole disc golf course within you house

    • Use plastic cups to mark the tee area for each hole

    • Use furniture and other household items to create obstacles for the various holes on your course

    • Use large containers (i.e., buckets, baskets, etc.) as your holes

    • Be creative in your course design – you can have holes go in and out of rooms or down a set of stairs

  2. Choose who starts first

  3. The first player throws their disc towards the hole, using a backhand technique:

    • Stand with your dominant shoulder facing the target (not like normal throwing)

    • With the disc in your dominant hand, bring it back towards your back hip

    • Step towards the target with your lead foot

    • Bring your throwing arm forward towards the target, releasing the disc with flick of the wrist

    • Having a continuous, fluid motion and releasing the disc parallel to the ground are key

  4. All players tee off before anyone throws a second time

  5. Now the player furthest from the hole gets to throw again

  6. Each player tries to get their disc to land in the hole

  7. The players record their score on each hole, the lower the score the better

  8. The player with the lowest score on the hole, tees off to start the next hole

  9. Continue this way until all the holes have been played, the player with the total lowest score wins

COMING SOON

STRIKE ZONE  

 

Equipment: sock or soft object for throwing, chart paper, markers

FMS Skill: Overhand throw

Tactical Focus:  Adjusting release point and follow through based on results of previous throws

How to play:

  1. This game is for two opponents, but can be played in teams

  2. Create a Strike Zone target on chart paper (see image to right)

  3. Decide who will pitch the first half inning

  4. The pitcher will start by throwing the sock at the target, trying to get strikes or outs by hitting specific parts of the target

  5. If the sock hits between two sections of the target, the pitcher chooses the better result (i.e., throwing a strike is better than giving up a hit)

  6. If the target is completely missed, it counts as a ball

  7. If you get three strikes before throwing four balls, the imaginary batter strikes out – four balls is a walk

  8. The pitcher wants to get three imaginary batters out while limiting the number of runs given up

  9. Imaginary runners advance based on the results of the pitch (single = 1 base, double = two bases, home run = all runners and the batter score)

  10. Other sections of the target can lead directly to outs (good) or to hits for the imaginary batter (bad)

  11. Once the pitcher gets three outs, the other player pitches their half inning

  12. Play a five, seven, or nine-inning game

  13. If playing alone, decide how many runs you must avoid giving up, to win the game (i.e., one per inning)

 

Option: Create a scoreboard to keep track of balls, strikes, outs, runs, and where the runners are on base (see image 2). Clothespins, clips, or paperclips work well to keep track of balls and strikes. Use baseball cards or clipart for the base runners. You can use playdough to stick them on the scoreboard.

CARNIVAL TOSSING STATIONS

 

Equipment: Homemade carnival games made from plastic cups, plastic bottles, egg cartons, chart paper, foam tiles, etc. A variety of objects that can be thrown or tossed – beanbags, soft-covered balls, marbles, stuffed animals, socks, etc.

FMS Skill:  Overhand throw, underhand throw

Tactical Focus: Adjusting release point based on results of previous throws, varying technique and strength based on object being thrown

How to play:

  1. Create a bunch of different target games like you would see at a carnival

  2. Create the rules for each game – how many throws do you get, are different targets worth different points, how do you win

  3. Create a rotation, so that you know where to go next 

  4. Decide if all the players go from station-to-station together or to one station each

  5. If you are at separate stations, you will need to record your results to see who wins

Knockdown – Use socks to knock down all of the cups. Try to do it in as few throws as possible.

Tic Tac Toe – Create a grid of three rows and three columns. Two players compete, trying to toss objects onto the grid in an attempt to get three in a row horizontally, vertically or diagonally.

Option 1: Once an object is in a square, it is claimed, and no other objects can land in that square.

Option 2: You can throw your object into a square that is already occupied, claiming that square for you and removing your opponent.

Ring Toss – Use plastic bottles to create targets for this game. You will also need to find something for rings that will go around the neck of the bottles (i.e., shower curtain rings, napkin holders, hair elastics).

Egg Carton Toss – Paint or colour some of the inside of an egg carton. Assign a different point value for each colour. Find objects that are small enough (i.e., marbles, table tennis ball, small toys) to land successfully in the egg carton.

You can find all kinds of examples for other homemade carnival games on the Internet. Get your parents to help you search. Pick ones that make sense based on the things that you have at home. Most of the games that you will kind are target games, but not all of them. Choose ones that are definitely Target Games. 

 

Another option: Have players earn points or coupons based on how they do at each station. For example, you earn 5 coupons for getting all the cups down on one throw at Knockdown. If it takes two throws, you get three coupons. Whoever collects the most coupons in a certain amount of time is the winner. You could also have a prize booth and players can turn in their coupons for their choice of prize.

ALIEN INVASION

 

Equipment: Colouring images of aliens; crayons or markers, socks or other soft objects that you can throw, plastic cups

FMS Skill: Overhand throw

Tactical Focus:  Adjusting release point based on results of previous throws, varying technique and strength based on object being thrown

How to play:

  1. Colour several different images of aliens and assign each one a different point value

  2. Collect a variety of objects that you can throw

  3. Attach the images to a wall that it is safe to throw your objects at

  4. Use plastic cups to designate where you must throw from, creating different distances and angles to throw from

  5. Decide who is going to throw first

  6. Start at your first throwing spot and throw three times at the images of your choice, scoring the designated points for each target hit

  7. The next player throws their objects, continuing until all players have had a turn

  8. Move to the next throwing spot and take turns from there

  9. After everyone has thrown from all of the spots, add up your points to see who wins

 

Modification: Throw from one specific spot and see how many throws it takes until you have hit all of the targets once. The player who makes the fewest throws is the winner.

GARBAGE CAN H-O-R-S-E

 

Equipment: a garbage can, basket, or box; some socks or foam balls, an open space

FMS Skill: Underhand throw, overhand throw

Tactical Focus:  Using angles to and different throwing techniques to hit a target

Note:  Basketball is not considered a Target Game, because one team needs to invade the territory of the other team in order to score. So, basketball is a Territorial Game. The basketball-themed game does not involve invading a team’s space, you are just shooting at the target – “the basket.”

How to play:

  1. Set up your playing area, using some kind of “basket” and placing it near a wall

  2. Decide who will go first

  3. Whoever goes first must announce what trick they are going to attempt while making a basket (i.e., sitting or standing; off the wall or straight in; through the legs, over the shoulder, normal shot; blindfolded; with two spins, etc.)

  4. If the shooter succeeds at their trick, all of the other players must attempt the exact same trick

  5. If the other shooters make the shot, they are safe, but if they miss the shot then they earn a letter “H” on their way to spelling HORSE

  6. If the original shooter missed their initial shot, the next shooter gets to do a wacky trick

  7.  If that player succeeds, play continues as in steps 4 and 5

  8. Anyone who spells HORSE is eliminated from the game, play until only one player remains

NET & WALL GAMES

 

Participants in most Net/Wall Games are trying to send (throw, hit, strike) an object over a net into the playing area on the other side. Examples include volleyball, tennis, and badminton. Players try to use their skills to place the object where it is difficult for their opponents to return it. The receiving player or team tries to defend their side of the playing area and to return the ball over the net. Some Net/Wall Games are played one versus one or doubles, while others involve larger teams. There are some Net/Wall games with similar tactics and strategies, except that the net is replaced by a wall. Players hit the object against the wall, trying to make it difficult for their opponent to get the object and return it. Sports like squash and racquetball fit into the category.

KEEP IT UP

 

Equipment: a balloon, beachball, paper ball, or a light-weight ball

FMS Skill: Striking with the hands or arms

Tactical Focus:  Keeping the ball in play, keeping the ball from touching the ground

How to play:

  1. Find an area where you will have room to move freely, even diving onto the ground if you want to

  2. You also want somewhere with a high ceiling or no ceiling at all, depending on the kind of ball that you are using

  3. If you are playing indoors, a balloon or crumpled up piece of paper will work

  4. If you are playing with more than one person, one person tosses the ball up to another player to start the game

  5.  That player strikes the ball up using their hands or arms so that another player can hit it

  6. No player should hit the ball consecutively

  7. Try and see how many hits in a row your group can do without the ball hitting the ground

  8. Group communication is a great way to keep players safe, such as calling out “mine” or saying the name of the player you are hitting to

  9. Try using volleyball techniques, like a bump or a set

 

Alternative Rules: Allow consecutive hits; allow players to use their legs and feet if necessary, to keep the ball from hitting the ground; make teams and hits must alternate between teams

 

Modification: Try it with a racquet and an appropriate ball or badminton birdie. If you don’t have a racquet, depending on the ball you use, you might be able to use a plastic plate, an empty 2L bottle, or book as the racquet. Be creative, there are so many things in your house that will work as a racquet replacement.

BLANKET BALL

 

Equipment: two beach balls or lightweight balls, two small blankets or towels, a net or some other way to divide the playing area

FMS Skill: Sending and receiving an object

Tactical Focus:  Teamwork

How to play:

  1. Find an area where you will have room to move freely

  2. You also want somewhere with a high ceiling or no ceiling at all, depending on the kind of ball that you are using

  3. Divide the players into teams, giving each team a blanket

  4. To warm up have each team work alone, tossing and catching their ball with their blanket

  5. When teams are having success tossing and catching, it is time to practice tossing and catching back-and-forth

  6. When the teams are ready, divide the playing area in half, using a net or other barrier (i.e., string tied between two trees, a bench or several chairs)

  7. You can also create side and back boundaries to your court

  8. Decide which team will start the play, this team uses their blanket to toss the ball over the net and into the other team’s court

  9. That team uses their blanket to catch the ball and toss it back over

  10. Play continues like this until the ball lands out of bounds or a team fails to catch the ball

  11. When that occurs, the opposing team scores a point and then starts the next point by tossing the ball over the net with the blanket

  12. Play until one team has scored a certain number of points (15, 21, 25)

  13. Play the best out of three or best out of five

SITTING BALLOON VOLLEYBALL

 

Equipment: a balloon, a net or some other way to divide the playing area

FMS Skill: Sending and receiving an object

Tactical Focus:  Hitting to open space, defending space

How to play:

  1. Find an area where you will have room to move freely

  2. Divide the players into teams

  3. Divide the playing area in half, using a net or other barrier (i.e., string tied between two trees, a bench or several chairs)

  4. Create side and back boundaries for your court

  5. Decide which team will start the game, this team will serve the ball first

  6. The receiving team has up to three hits to send the balloon back over the net, trying to hit it somewhere that makes it difficult on their opponents

  7. Play continues like this until the ball lands out of bounds, is played illegally, or the ball lands on a team’s side

  8. The player hitting the ball must have their buttocks on the ground when they are touching the ball, you are not allowed to be on your knees

  9. When that occurs, the opposing team scores a point and then that team starts the next point by serving the ball over the net

  10. Play until one team has scored a certain number of points (15, 21, 25)

  11. Play the best out of three or best out of five

  12. Most normal volleyball rules apply – no player can hit two consecutive times, the balloon cannot be thrown or caught, players cannot touch the net, maximum of three hits before the ball must be returned

  13. Serves can be blocked in sitting volleyball

 

Modifications: If playing with younger students, allow them to toss and catch the ball instead of hitting it. Focus on being ready to receive the ball (hand positioning) and trying to send it away from the other team. If playing with older students, use a beach ball or other lightweight ball.

TWO SQUARE

 

Equipment: a volleyball or ball of similar size, a playing surface that will allow the ball to bounce

FMS Skill: Sending and receiving an object, athletic stance

Tactical Focus:  Hitting to open space, defending space

How to play:

  1. Create two adjacent squares using pylons or chalk

  2. One player is assigned to each square and the line separating their squares is essentially the “net”

  3. Decide who will start first and that player will drop the ball in front of them, letting it bounce and then striking it with their hands over the middle line and into their opponent’s square

  4. The opposing player should be in an athletic stance and ready to receive the ball

  5. That player lets the ball bounce once in their square and then hits it back over the “net” underhand or sidearm

  6. Play continues back-and-forth until an error occurs, which is a point for the player that did not make the error

  7. Errors include any of the following:

    • The ball hits a line

    •   The ball lands out of bounds

    •  A player plays a ball that did not bounce in their 

    •  A player cannot return a ball that lands in their square

    •  A player gets hit by a ball

    • A player hits the ball with a fist or overhand

  8. The player that wins the point, starts the next point by serving

  9. Play to a certain number of points - higher if only two players (11, 15, 21) and smaller if players are waiting in line (3, 5, 7)

  10. You can play a non-competitive version by trying to maintain the longest rally possible, counting each successful hit

 

Progressions:

Catch – Younger players might not be ready for traditional two square, so allow them to catch and toss the ball. The ball must be tossed underhand and players can only hold onto the ball for three seconds. Other than that, regular rules apply.

Catch and Clap – The player in Square 1 starts the game by tossing the ball into the other square and doing a three-clap pattern. The other player needs to repeat the pattern after they toss the ball, otherwise it counts as an error. For example, the first player tosses the ball to Square 2 and then claps twice in front and once behind the back.

Tap – Players catch the ball after it bounces in their square. The player then drops the ball into their square and taps it underhand into the other square using one or two hands.

Partners – Two players are in each square. Depending on the rules, they must either alternate hits or it doesn’t matter who taps it.

FLOOR TENNIS

 

Equipment: a tennis ball or similar-sized ball, two racquets or other implements to strike the ball with (plastic plates, mini stick, pool noodle)

FMS Skill: Sending and receiving an object – forehand and backhand

Tactical Focus:  Using a proper stance to strike (as in tennis), follow through towards your target, maintaining a rally

How to play:

  1. Create a playing area with two sidelines

  2. Players stand at opposite ends of the playing area

  3. Decide who will start first and that player will push the ball along the ground towards their opponent

  4. When pushing (striking) the ball, the player should turn sideways and try to strike the ball in front of their lead foot

  5. The other player starts in ready position (feet facing forward) and turns sideways when they are getting ready to receive and then send the ball

  6. Players need to push the ball towards their target with the racquet parallel to the ground, keeping the ball inside the sidelines

  7. Play continues back-and-forth until an error occurs, which is a point for the player that did not make the error

  8. Errors include any of the following:

    • the ball goes out of bounds

    • a player cannot return a ball

    • missing the ball

  9. The player that wins the point, starts the next point by serving

  10. Play to a certain number of points

  11. You can play a non-competitive version by trying to maintain the longest rally possible, counting each successful hit

  12. Play several different games – forehand-to forehand; backhand-to-backhand; forehand-to-backhand; alternating between forehand and backhand

 

Modification: Allow younger players to stop the ball with the racquet and then send it back

MINI TENNIS

 

Equipment: a tennis ball or similar sized ball, a playing surface that will allow the ball to bounce, two racquets, some kind of net (i.e., string tied between two chairs, a bench)

FMS Skill: Striking with a racquet

Tactical Focus:  Hitting to open space, defending space

How to play:

  1.  Create two adjacent squares using pylons or chalk (larger than in Two Square) – add a service line about one metre away the dividing line

  2. Place a net on the dividing line between the two courts

  3. Decide who will start first and that player will drop serve the ball, letting it bounce and then striking it with their racquet

  4. The ball must land beyond the service line and inside the court or it is a fault and the player must serve again

  5. Two faults result in a loss of point and loss of serve

  6. If the serve is in, the opposing player must strike the ball back to the serving player for the point to count

  7. If the receiving player does not return the serve, the server starts the point again

  8. When the serve is successfully returned, the rally continues until one of the players makes an error

  9. Errors include any of the following:

    • The ball lands out of bounds

    • A player cannot return a ball that lands in their square

    • The ball bounces more than once

    •  A player hits the ball before it bounces

  10. The player that wins the point, starts the next point by serving

  11. Play to a certain number of points - higher if only two players (11, 15, 21)

 

Modifications: You can play a non-competitive version by trying to maintain the longest rally possible, counting each successful hit. Allow players to volley the ball (play it before it bounces), but they must stay behind the service line and no smashes are allowed. Play doubles with one partner waiting behind the other partner. After striking the ball, the player should always leave the court in the same direction and go around behind their partner. This will allow their partner to safely enter the playing court.

HAND BADMINTON

 

Equipment: a balled-up piece of paper, something for a net (i.e., two chairs)

FMS Skill: Striking with the hands

Tactical Focus:  Keeping the ball in play, keeping the ball from touching the ground

How to play:

  1. Find an area where you will have room to move freely, even diving onto the ground if you want to

  2. You also want somewhere with a high ceiling or no ceiling at all

  3. Create sidelines and a back line for each side of your court, you do not need a very big court

  4. Divide your court with some kind of net that is about waist height, two chairs might work well

  5. Decide which player will go first, that player strikes the ball up using an open hand

  6. The receiving player strikes the ball back with an open hand

  7. Play continues like this until a player makes an error

  8. Errors include any of the following:

    • Hitting the ball out of bounds

    • Hitting the ball so that it strikes the ceiling

    • Letting the ball land on your side of the court

    • Touching the net with any part of your body

  9. The player that does not make the error and starts by serving the next point

  10. Play to a predetermined number of points (15, 21)

KITCHEN TABLE TENNIS

 

Equipment: boxes, table tennis ball or similar sized ball, table, implements to use as racquets

FMS Skill: Striking with a racquet

Tactical Focus:  Hitting to open space, defending space

How to play:

  1.  Clear off the kitchen table and make sure there is room to move around it

  2. Create a net (about six inches high) to divide the table into two halves using boxes that you can find in your house

  3. Find implements that you can use for racquets (i.e., pie pan, spatula, paper plate) and practice hitting the ball against to make sure it works for you

  4. Decide who will start first by playing Rock-Paper-Scissors

  5. The server will strike the so that it bounces on their side and then over the net and bounces on the other side

  6. A serve that hits the net is called a “let” and is replayed

  7. A serve that does not bounce on the server’s side, go over the net, or land in the other player’s court, results in a point for the receiving player

  8. Once the serve is successful, the players rally to see who will win the point

  9. A serve is used to restart the game after each point is over

  10. Servers have five consecutive serves before switching roles with the receiving player

  11. If the ball hits the net and lands in during the regular rally that is fine, lets only apply to serves

  12. It is illegal to touch the table or net with your body or racquet

  13. The winner is the first player to reach 21 points, but you must win by two points

 

Modifications: You can play a non-competitive version by trying to maintain the longest rally possible, counting each successful hit. Play doubles with partners basically dividing their side into two halves and hitting balls that only land on their half.

WALL BALL

 

Equipment: a large wall with lots of space around it, a volleyball or utility ball

FMS Skill: Throwing and catching

Tactical Focus:  Defending space; attacking open space

How to play:

  1. Find a place to play with room to move freely

  2. Mark off the sidelines of your playing area and a back line with chalk

  3. Decide who will start and that person bounce the ball off the ground so that it hits the wall

  4. The receiving player is in ready position and ready to react to where the ball is going

  5. The receiver must catch the ball after it bounces once and then throw it so it bounces on the ground before it hits the wall

  6. Play continues to alternate in this way until one of the players makes an error

  7. Errors include:

    • Letting the ball bounce more than once

    • Missing the ball

    • Not bouncing the ball before it hits the wall

    • Causing the ball to land outside the sidelines or beyond the back line

  8. Making an error gives a point to the other player

  9. The player that wins the point, starts the next point by serving

  10. Play to a certain number of points

Modification: Instead of throwing and catching the ball, players must strike it with an open hand. So the server would drop the ball and strike it so that the ball bounces and then hits the wall. The receiving player would strike the ball after it bounces and hit it off the ground and to the wall.

TENNIS SQUASH

 

Equipment: a large wall with lots of space around it, a tennis ball or similar sized ball, masking tape or painter’s tape, two racquets, chalk

FMS Skill: Striking with a racquet

Tactical Focus:  Defending space; attacking open space

How to play:

  1.  Find a place to play with room to move freely

  2. Mark off the sidelines of your playing area and a back line with chalk and divide the playing area into two halves

  3. Make a horizontal line about on the wall with tape – about one metre from the ground

  4. Decide who will start and that person must drop serve the ball into the other player’s half of the court

  5. The receiving player is in ready position and ready to react to where the ball is going

  6. The receiver must strike the ball after it bounces once and hit it off the wall back into the server’s half of the court

  7. Play continues to alternate in this way until one of the players makes an error

  8. Errors include:

    • Letting the ball bounce more than once

    • Missing the ball

    • Not hitting the ball directly to the wall

    • Causing the ball to land outside the sidelines or beyond the back line

    • Failing to hit the ball above the line on the wall

  9. Making an error gives a point to the other player

  10. The player that wins the point, starts the next point by serving

 

Modifications: You can play a non-competitive version by trying to maintain the longest rally possible, counting each successful hit. Play doubles with partners basically dividing their side into two halves and hitting balls that only land on their half.

STRIKING and FIELDING GAMES NEW!

Participants in most Net/Wall Games are trying to send (throw, hit, strike) an object over a net into the playing area on the other side. Examples include volleyball, tennis, and badminton. Players try to use their skills to place the object where it is difficult for their opponents to return it. The receiving player or team tries to defend their side of the playing area and to return the ball over the net. Some Net/Wall Games are played one versus one or doubles, while others involve larger teams. There are some Net/Wall games with similar tactics and strategies, except that the net is replaced by a wall. Players hit the object against the wall, trying to make it difficult for their opponent to get the object and return it. Sports like squash and racquetball fit into the category.

 

QUICK ROUNDERS NEW! 

 

Equipment: sock or soft object for batting, one pillow for the batting base, three tall objects for the other bases called “posts” (i.e., wrapping paper tubes), empty 2L bottle or other batting implement

FMS Skill: Striking with an implement, tossing and catching

Tactical Focus:  Striking with control, hitting to open space, defending space

How to play:

  1.  Find an area that is free of obstacles

  2. Place the pillow where the batter will stand and the first three “posts” (bases) out as in a traditional baseball diamond shape

  3. Unlike in baseball, the fourth base in rounders, is not where the batter stands, instead it goes straight from the third base to a line parallel to where the batter started (see image)

  4. The pitcher tosses the ball underhand towards the batter

  5. The batter swings one-handed in Rounders, unlike in baseball and carries the bat with them when running

  6. The batter will run regardless of whether the ball is hit or not – also different than baseball

  7. The batter starts running around the bases, trying to make it all the way around to score a run (a rounder) by passing the line that is the fourth post

  8. The batter is out if the ball is caught in the air or if the fielders touch (stump) the post before the runner gets to it

  9. The batter gets nine attempts to score as much as possible and then the players switch roles

 

Optional Rule:  If the batter gets to the second post or beyond, but does not make it “home”, they score a “half rounder”

Modification:  If playing with more than one player on each team, you can allow the batter to stop at a base to avoid getting out. That player must make it home when the next batter runs, so that they can take the next turn at bat. In this version, each batter gets five turns at bat before the teams switch roles.

RUN DOWN NEW! 

 

Equipment: an object to throw (socks, baseball, etc.), two items for bases (pillows, pylons, etc.), baseball gloves (optional)

FMS Skill:  Throwing and catching

Tactical Focus:  Knowing when it is safe to run between the bases, how to get the runner to go at the right time for the fielders

How to play:

  1. Place two bases about 6-9 metres apart

  2. A fielder stands near each of the bases and they throw the ball back-and-forth

  3. All the other players start on one of the bases

  4. These runners are looking for an opportunity to ty to make it safely to the other base

  5. The runners need to avoid getting tagged while they are in between bases, that might require them to reverse course and return to base

  6. The fielders try to get the runners to leave the base by faking, throwing ground balls or balls high in the air

  7. Runners score a point every time they can get to a new base safely

  8. Once a runner has been tagged on three different occasions, they switch with the fielder who tagged them the third time

Modification: The runner switches with the fielder every time that they get tagged.

PROTECT THE WICKETS NEW! 

 

Equipment: Tennis ball, a batting implement, something for the wickets

FMS Skill: Striking with an implement, throwing

Tactical Focus:  Striking with control, defending a “strike zone”, throwing with control

How to play:

  1.  Create” wickets” using an empty 2L bottle, cereal box, or bowling pin

  2. The batter stands near the wickets, slightly ahead of them and a little to the side

  3. The batter must avoid hitting the wickets with their own bat, using short, compact swings

  4. Unlike in baseball, the batter holds the batting implement down (like a golf club), using it to protect the wickets

  5. The other players are scattered out in front of the batter a safe distance away

  6. One player tosses or throws the ball (depending on space and ability) at the wickets, making sure it bounces once before it gets there

  7. The batter hits or deflects the ball away from the wickets

  8. The batter is out if the ball or bat hits the wickets, or if one of the fielders catches a hit ball before it bounces

  9. If there are multiple fielders, they take turns pitching at the wickets

  10. When the batter is out, one of the fielders takes over the role

  11. Points can be scored for clean hits that travel a certain distance (not marginal deflections)

KICK CRICKET NEW! 

 

Equipment: a beach ball or a foam ball, two pylons or other markers for the wickets (empty 2L bottles, bowling pins)

FMS Skill:  Kicking

Tactical Focus:  Hitting to open space, defending space

How to play:

  1. Find an area that is free of obstacles

  2. Place the pylons (the “wickets”) about 10-15 metres apart, depending on the available space

  3. The batter starts out just in front of one of these wickets

  4. The pitcher is near the other wicket and rolls the ball towards the batter

  5. The batter kicks the ball in any direction and decides whether it is safe to run – you don’t have to run if you don’t think you can make it back safely

  6. The batter scores one point every time that they can run from the starting wicket to the other wicket and back – you can score multiple points on the same turn 

  7. The fielding player retrieves the ball and tries to get the batter out 

  8. The batter is out if they miss their kick and the ball rolls by and hits the wicket, the ball is caught in the air, or they are running when the fielder “puts down” one of the wickets with the ball 

  9. To “put down” the wicket, the defender has to hit one of the wickets with the ball – it does not have to be the one the batter is running towards

  10. The players switch roles after a certain number of “kicks”

  11. Play to a certain score or for a predetermined number of innings

 

Modification:  The same game can be played like more traditional cricket. The pitcher must bounce the ball (one bounce only) towards the batter’s wicket. The batter hits the ball in any direction using a batting implement (i.e., tennis racquet, flat piece of wood, hockey stick). In cricket, the batter runs with the bat, so be careful when you are running. The batter would be “out” if they accidentally hit their own wicket while swinging, so make sure you have space to swing. 

INDOOR KICKBALL NEW! 

 

Equipment: Four pillows for bases, a beach ball or a soft-covered ball

FMS Skill: Kicking

Tactical Focus:  Hitting to open space, defending space

How to play:

  1. Find an area that is free of obstacles

  2. Place the pillows out in a diamond shape

  3. Put the beach ball near home base

  4. The batter kicks the ball into the field of play, trying to keep it from the fielder(s)

  5. The batter runs around the bases, trying to make it all the way around

  6. The batter scores one point for each base that they make it to before the play is stopped

  7. The play is stopped if the ball is caught in the air or when the ball is returned to home base by a fielder, who then yells “Stop!”

  8. The batter gets nine attempts to score as much as possible and then the players switch roles

Modification:  If playing with more than one player on each team (i.e., 2 versus 2), you can allow the batter to stop at a base to avoid getting out. That player must make it home when the next batter runs, so that they can take the next turn at bat. In this version, each batter gets five turns at bat before the teams switch roles.

GREAT BASE RACE NEW! 

 

Equipment: an object to throw (socks, baseball, stuffed animal, etc.), four items to serve as “bases” (pillows, pylons, canned goods, etc.) a bat is optional (empty 2L bottle, metal tube, a racquet)

FMS Skill: Throwing/Striking an object to open space

Tactical Focus:  Fielders work on defending space, decision making under pressure (how many points to try for)

How to play:

  1. Find some space indoors or outdoors that is free of obstacles

  2. Create boundaries for the playing area – what is “fair” and what is “foul”?

  3. The batter stands at “home base” and is a good distance away from the fielder(s)

  4. The other three bases are spaced out in a row in front of the batter – the further the base is from home base, the more points it is worth

  5. The batter throws the object into the playing area, trying to keep it away from the fielder(s)

  6. The batter then runs around one of the bases and tries to get back to home base safely

  7. The batter must decide how many points to try and score, there is greater risk in trying to score three points

  8. The fielder tries to retrieve the object and tag the batter before they get back to home base

  9. If the batter is tagged before they get home, no points are scored

  10. Players switch roles after the batter has been tagged out three times

Modifications:

  • You can play with a “bat”. The batter just tosses the ball up and then strikes it into play with the bat.

  • If you have a larger space, the batter must throw three objects into the field. The play ends when all three have been fielded or when all three have been returned to home base. In this version, the batter runs around the scoring bases and back home until the play is over. That means the batter can score way more than three points on each play.

  • You can play with more than one fielder and they can work together to retrieve the object quickly. One fielder can throw the object to another, who then tags the batter. In this version, each player would get a turn to be the batter during each inning.

PEPPER NEW! 

 

Equipment: An object to throw (socks, baseball, etc.), a bat (empty 2L bottle, metal tube, a racquet)

FMS Skill: Striking with an implement with control

Tactical Focus:  Fielders work on being “ready” and their hand-eye coordination, while the batter works on short, light swings

How to play:

  1. Find some space indoors or outdoors that is free of obstacles

  2. The batter stands a good distance away from the fielders

  3. One fielder tosses the ball (underhand) towards the batter

  4. The batter uses a short, light swing to hit a grounder (ball that bounces once or twice) towards the fielders

  5. The fielders are in a line, side-by-side, with a safe distance between them

  6. Depending on where the ball is hit, the closest fielder tries to scoop up the ball cleanly and quickly toss it back to the batter

  7. Each batter gets 20 swings before switching with one of the fielders

  8. The batter scores one point for each successful ground ball – no points are scored for missing the ball, fouling it off, or hitting it in the air

  9. Bonus points can be scored for hitting to each fielder in sequence

 

Competitive version:  Fielders line up behind each other. The first fielder tosses the ball to the batter and fields it on the bounce, scoring a point for not making an error. The next player tosses the ball and then tries to field it. If the ball is caught in the air by a fielder, the batter is “out” and must switch with the fielder. Otherwise, the batter is replaced by the first fielder to score five points.

BATTING TARGET BASEBALL NEW! 

 

Equipment: Sock or soft object for batting, chart paper, markers, tape, an empty 2L bottle or other implement

FMS Skill: Striking with an implement

Tactical Focus:  Striking with control

How to play:

  1.  Create targets using chart paper or two pieces of regular paper taped together

  2. Create three targets that say “single”, two that say “double”, and one each that say “triple” and “home run”

  3. Attach the targets to a blank wall with the “home run” near the top of the wall and the others spread out randomly

  4. The batter tosses the ball up with one hand and then uses the bottle to bat the ball towards the wall

  5. If the ball hits one of the targets, then imaginary runners advance based on the results (i.e., single = 1 base, double = two bases, home run = all runners and the batter score)

  6. Hitting any part of the rest of the wall results in an “out”

  7. The inning is over after three outs

  8. Play a five, seven, or nine-inning game

  9. If playing alone, decide how many runs you must score to win the game (i.e., one per inning)

  10. If playing against an opponent, you must outscore them to win

  11. In this option, your opponent can pitch (toss) the ball to you from the side, so that you can bat it towards the wall.

Option:  Create a scoreboard to keep track of balls, strikes, outs, runs, and where the runners are on base (see image 2). Clothespins, clips, or paperclips work well to keep track of balls and strikes. Use baseball cards or clipart for the base runners. You can use playdough to stick them on the scoreboard.

BATTING FOR POINTS NEW! 

 

Equipment: six socks or soft objects for batting, an empty 2L bottle or other implement (i.e., pickleball racquet, racquetball racket, your hand inside an empty cereal box), several items for targets (buckets, boxes, hula hoops, bowling pins)

FMS Skill: Striking with an implement

Tactical Focus:  Striking with control

How to play:

  1. Find a safe playing space and spread out the targets in the playing area.

  2. Make sure the batter can tell the point value of each target – something like a bucket could have one point value for being hit and another value if the ball bounces inside it.

  3. The batter uses a one-handed forehand swing to strike the ball towards the targets, trying to score points.

  4. Depending on the space, the balls, and the ability of the players, the batter can either toss the ball up and hit it or have another player toss it to them.

  5. The batter could also drop the ball, let it bounce, and then hit it or have another player drop bounce it to them.

  6. After six hits, tally up the score, retrieve the balls and let the next batter have a turn.

 

Modifications:

  • If you have a batting tee or pylon, you can have the batter strike the ball off it towards the targets.

  • Place the higher scoring targets on the outside to encourage hitting away from where fielders might be.

  • Prior to each hit, announce bonus points for hitting certain targets – this would simulate situational hitting (i.e., hitting towards first to advance the runner).

Check back here often for more fun games to keep active and engaged during isolation

CONTACT US

905-662-7901

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CIRA Ontario

PO Box 99072 RPO Heritage Green, Stoney Creek ON L8J 2P7

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