Badminton, Anyone?: The Best Lawn Games for Players of All Ages
When you think of playing games on the lawn, children’s classics like tag and capture the flag might be the first activities that spring to mind but the possibilities are truly endless. This article provides ideas for lawn games that are fun for all ages and can easily be adapted to fit a wide range of skill levels.
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(BPT) – As long as the sun is shining, it’s time to get outside and enjoy that beautiful lawn you’ve been working so hard to maintain throughout the year. Barbecues and picnics are always a good excuse to get family and friends together but after you’ve finished eating you don’t want the kids (or the adults) wandering back inside to waste a glorious day staring at a television or a computer screen. It’s time for some good old-fashioned backyard fun: lawn games.
When you think of playing games on the lawn, children’s classics like tag and capture the flag might be the first activities that spring to mind but the possibilities are truly endless. Below are some of the top lawn games that are fun for all ages and can easily be adapted to fit a wide range of skill levels.
Badminton: Official badminton matches are played indoors, but who wants to hang out in a hot gym on a beautiful day? You can pick up a decent-quality outdoor badminton set at any sporting goods store. Like tennis, you can play singles or doubles and for children or beginners, you can start without the net. Just hitting the shuttlecock back and forth is great for improving eye-hand coordination and fitness.
Croquet: Croquet is one of the oldest and most widely-played backyard games in the world. There are many variations, but all involve using a mallet to hit a ball through a series of hoops or wickets, embedded in the grass. You can make the course – and the rules – as simple or as complex as you want and you can play as individuals or teams.
Horseshoes: Two individuals (or two teams of two) take turns tossing four horseshoes at two stakes set in the ground. Backyard players can set their own rules, of course, but generally you score points either for “ringers” or for landing your horseshoe closer to the stake than your opponent’s. Other tossing games include ladder toss, cornhole, washer pitching and many variations on the ring toss theme. Choose your favorite or make up your own new game.
Lawn bowls: Even if your lawn isn’t a perfectly level and immaculately manicured bowling green, you can still enjoy a good game of lawn bowls. The objective is to roll balls – they’re biased, so they follow a curved path – as close as possible to a smaller ball, called the “jack.” As a member of the boules family of sports, lawn bowling shares a common ancestry with bocce, petanque and other games in which a heavy ball is thrown or rolled toward a smaller target ball.