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Outdoor Elderly Activities
Yard games – Popular outdoor elderly activities include easy games. Games are also a wonderful means of exercise for seniors. If you are planning a group function, consider prizes! Depending on mobility and physical health, here are some favorite senior games for outdoors:
- Cup and ball game – You can buy the old-fashioned wooden cup with a ball attached on a cord. One version is to see who can get the ball into the cup the most times in a given timeframe. This is a great game for those with limited mobility who can’t participate in other games. You can also do a special project to make your own cup and ball from a plastic picnic cup and pingpong ball. Then play!
- Pickle Ball — Fast becoming a leading game. My friend’s team even has people in their 90s playing! It’s an easy-going court type game somewhat like tennis, and the ball bounces a bit like ping pong. A light wiffle ball is used with a paddle racket. Only underhand motions are done, so it’s easy. They say it’s great for the rotator cuff too. Very relaxed and especially social. Definitely worth finding out more and starting a group.
- Horseshoes – For those with good arm strength. A modified version can also be set up for wheelchair participants.
- Beanbag toss – Tossing games make great outdoor elderly activities. This often involves tossing into a cut-out hole or into a ring. This may need to be modified for seniors, especially if vision is an issue for your group.
- Ring toss – Again, a gentle tossing game that may require modifications. One version is to toss rings onto an upright object such as a weighted down bottle or a peg.
- Croquet – A great game that can be set up for a shorter or easier course.
- Shuffleboard – This game is extremely popular, if you have access to a court. Some parties are themed around a facility that provides shuffleboard.
- Badmitten – Some of these outdoor elderly activities need a little mobility. Active, but more low-key than tennis. You can play across a sidewalk or path too, if you’re playing just for fun.
- Walking races – Try the old carrying an egg in a spoon too!
- Water balloon toss – If your group doesn’t mind getting a little wet! There are teams of two. Begin by standing three feet or more across from each other. With each toss, teams take another step back. If you break your balloon you’re out. Whoever is remaining without breaking their water balloon wins.
- Yard darts – There are sets that are both sharp and stick into the ground, or not sharp.
- Lawn or patio bowling – Best to use on a flat surface or really short grass. This is simply a plastic bowling set that is set up and scored in the traditional manner, except it’s outdoors. Because the pins and balls are so light weight, it is perfect for seniors. Even manageable by wheelchair participants.
- Wiffle ball – With this light weight bat and ball set you can have a batting contest to see who can bat the ball the farthest the most times. Make a line in the yard to serve as a boundary, or even set up a low badmitten net. Get a volunteer pitcher, and you’re ready to go.
- Beach ball volley – This is played with several teams of two people. Each team of two has a beach ball. Throw it up and start volleying it back and forth (you can determine the distance between the two people). Which ever team keeps the volley in the air the longest, wins. Another version is a leader calling out the name (or first initial) of player, and the person with the ball must toss it over to them.
- Frisbee target toss – Set up a net and attach an item in the middle to serve as a bullseye. It can be as small as a paper or plastic plate, or as large as a towel, depending on the players. (An actual target would be ideal, if available). Players take turns throwing the frisbee at the bullseye. Whoever hits it or is the closest, wins.
- Ladder toss – This game set consists of a three rung ladder, and several bolos (two balls connected by a rope). You toss the bolos at the ladder and watch them wind around the rungs. The different rungs are worth different points: 1, 2, and 3. The goal is to get exactly 21 points the fastest.
This article was originally published on www.elder-one-stop.com