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11 fun backyard games to get kids and parents moving

Ditch the screens for good, old-fashioned family fun.

Family playing outside in the backyard Credit: Getty Images / xavierarnau

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Days are getting longer. The weather is getting warmer. It's time to get those backyard hangouts going! Barbecues and pool parties mean some serious family fun. Whether you're having friends over or just looking to get the whole family outside, here are some of our favorite backyard games to get the whole family moving.

1. Badminton

A parent carries their child over their shoulders outside.
Credit: Getty Images / gahsoon

Outdoor games for families: Badminton

Badminton is the ultimate backyard game. The rules are simple and it’s fun for all ages to play. Plus it’s fun as either a 1 on 1 game, or you can play doubles to let the whole family in on the fun. This backyard set is easy to set up, durable, affordable and comes with a carry bag to take with you to the beach or to the neighbor’s yard.

Get the Franklin Sports Badminton Starter Set at Amazon for $27.16

2. Spikeball

A spikeball set against a white background.
Credit: Spikeball

Outdoor games for families: Spikeball

If you want to get competitive, Spikeball is great for kids tween and up. If you want to get silly, we endorse it for kids as young as toddler age. The rules are intuitive and a cinch to pick up in minutes, it’s super easy to play, and it can go from complex and competitive to easy and addictive depending on the players. For an all-ages game that’s fun for all abilities, this ping-pong, volleyball, and four-square combo that’s played on a net is a blast for all. Plus, it takes up very little space and can be played in spacious back yards to patios.

Get the Spikeball Standard 3 Ball Kit at Amazon for $69.96

3. Croquet

A croquet set in a beige room.
Credit: Manhattan Toy

Outdoor games for families: Croquet

Start them young on the arts of a posh game of croquet. This kid-size starter set is adorable and fun for pint-sized players.

Get the Through the Woods Kids Croquet Set at Anthropologie for$48

4. Kick croquet

Children play Hearthsong outside.
Credit: Hearthsong

Outdoor games for families: Hearthsong

If you’d rather break a sweat than have a posh game of croquet, this version adds a little bit of soccer to your game. The oversized balls and wickets make for easier aim for little ones while making it an energetic game for the whole family.

Get the Hearthsong Oversized Kick Croquet at Amazon for $26.90

5. Bocce

Two images of bocce balls on a surface.
Credit: Manhattan Toy

Outdoor games for families: Bocce

Bocce is such a fun family game, but the heavy balls can be a bit much for little ones. This lightweight set can go from indoor to outdoor and the foam balls make for a fun and safe tactile experience.

Get the Kids’ Bocce Ball Set at Anthropologie for $36.80

6. Backyard golf

A home golf set.
Credit: iPlay

Outdoor games for families: Golf

Bring a game of put-put home. Golf is such a fun sport for little kids and it’s great for building core strength, balance and mental focus. This trainer was made just for kids, but when it turns your backyard into a driving range you’ll be hard-pressed to find an adult that isn’t game for getting in on the fun.

Get the iPlay, iLearn Kids Golf Toys Set at Amazon for $25.49

7. Cornhole

A person throws a bean bag in cornhole.
Credit: EastPoint Sports

Outdoor games for families: Cornhole

Cornhole is easy to set up, deceptively simple, and highly addictive! It was the quarantine game of choice, but its popularity shows no sign of stopping. Part of its appeal is that it’s so playable—no matter what your age or athletic prowess. You can go big with a regulation-sized set or you can go small with a portable one. If you want to go with the latter, we are huge fans of this small but sturdy one that fits in yards of all sizes and can pack up small to transport it or to stow it away.

Get the Go Gater Cornhole Set at Amazon for $38.46

8. Lawn bowling

Bowling pins sit on a lawn.
Credit: Hey Play!

Outdoor games for families: Yard bowling

The only way to make bowling more fun is to make it an outdoor game! This beautiful set is made with durable New Zealand pine that helps it stay sturdy on lawns and driveways. It also comes with a nylon carrying case for convenient storage and easy transport to the beach, park, or wherever you may go!

Get the Hey Play! Lawn Bowling Set at Amazon for $32.92

9. Laser tag

Four laser guns against a white background.
Credit: Histoy

Outdoor games for families: Laser tag

For a fun and competitive outdoor game, you can’t beat laser tag. Break up in teams or make it every man for themselves. Either way, outdoor laser tag will get the whole family moving.

Get the 4-player Laser Tag Set for $62.99

10. Body bumpers

Two children bump into each other wearing inflatable suits.
Credit: Banzai

Outdoor games for families: Banzai Bump & Bounce

Turn yourselves into human bumper cars with this hilarious game. These inflatable bodysuits are hilarious for a high contact game of bounce. Just inflate them, put them on, and get ready to get silly as you fight to be the last one standing.

Get the Banzai Bump N Bounce Body Bumpers at Amazon for $21.99

11. Pickleball

A child plays pickleball on a court.
Credit: Getty Images / RichLegg

Outdoor games for families: Pickleball

Have you been wanting to get in on the Pickleball craze but haven’t been able to score some court time? This half-sized set is just right for a backyard game and even better for smaller players that might not have the stamina to play on a full-sized court. The wooden paddles, while not regulation size, are a bit lighter on the wrists and easy for kids to hold.

Get the Franklin Sports Half-Sized Pickleball Net Set with Paddles at Amazon for $40.99

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