Those long summer days need some creative thinking to keep the family entertained. This page has 7 ideas for garden sports that will see those hours fly by. Instead of watching the TV or mobile phone screens, get the family enjoying physical activities instead!
I have covered the main options for the best outdoor trampolines in the linked article. These are brilliant ways to keep family members of all ages entertained… and I’m including mum and dad in that!
Big trampolines come with padded perimeter areas, safety nets on the side and sturdy hooks to keep them grounded. You can get different sizes, with the 14-foot models the most popular choice.
Smaller trampolines have the advantage of being useable indoors. I recommend a model with a handle, which gives more options for use as well as being safer. Supervision is required for all trampolines. The value (in terms of hours spend for the price) is second to none!
All the enjoyment of tennis, with no risk of the ball flying into the neighbour’s garden! Generations were bought up with Swingball. This was a brand, and the concept now has many other versions which are great value.
All you need is some lawn to fix the spiked pole into (or get one with a solid base – like the model I have linked to here). If you don’t already have the tennis racquets, then you’ll need these alongside – simply choose a set which includes them. The Pro All Surface Swingball fits the bill and comes at a great value price point too.
You’ll be surprised how much fun this game is as an adult!
This one is wonderful for the adults (along with a G&T or Pimms anyone?), though the kids will love it too. It is one of the oldest garden sports. The idea is simple, you set up a course with hoops, then hit your balls with long-handled hammer to get them through. Individual or team play are both possible.
I see a croquet set as an investment which should last you years. All you need is a lawn!
The top-rated croquet set over at amazon.co.uk is the BEX Pro – check out the impressive quality on this dedicated product page.
Football is always a winner when it comes to garden sports. Kicking a ball around takes on a whole new level when there are goalposts to aim for.
Not only will this bring a focus to the game, it creates a new role to enjoy. After all, who wants to be the goalie when there are only two jumpers (and resulting disputes about whether the ball was in or not!) to stand between.
Depending on how big your garden is, some softer (sponge or light plastic) balls can be a good investment. These will make sure your windows and plants are safer from harm.
Small, adjustable goalposts need not cost a fortune. With some care (no using them as a climbing frame!), a good set should last you many years.
This game is better known for beach-time, though works just as well in the garden. You have a jack (small ball) and set of 8 coloured or silver balls. The idea is simple, to get your balls closer to the jack than your opponent’s.
Boule works well on sand, though you can also enjoy it on your lawn. You can pick up a basic set very cheaply – a great option to add to your reserves for those long summer holidays.
I like the classic silver sets, though these might not be suitable for the youngest members of your family.
I’m not suggesting you let the kids hit real golf balls out in the garden. That sounds like a recipe for disaster (or at the very least, broken windows!) to me. Fortunately, there are a lot of alternatives which use lightweight plastic clubs and balls. You’ll even get them with holes to aim for. These are suitable for 5+ (do vary, so check the product) and can make a great change from those regular garden sports.
Check out this cool plastic mini-golf set from ‘out of the blue’ at amazon.co.uk
Going old-school with this suggestion… you’ll be surprised just how much time a good hoop can soak up, particularly with friends. Of course, this is a super-cheap option too. You’ll need somewhere to store the hoops and getting 3+ of them can make for a great group activity.
Instead of a separate entry, I’ll include skipping ropes along with this entry. Skipping is a big fat burner (after just a few minutes it becomes very high-intensity).
I’ll end this page here. There are some more ideas, though these are about to be the topic of their own detailed guides. Come back soon for insights into the best garden paddling pools / temporary swimming pools, and the best garden swings!
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