Amp up your family pool time with these out-of-the-ordinary ideas for pool fun. These aren’t your run-of-the-mill pool games… no “chicken” or Marco Polo here! Your kids will be impressed by your creativity. You don’t have to tell them you found these games on the internet! All you need is a couple of pool float, boogie boards, a pool noodle, and an empty 2-liter bottle:

Pile Up

What You Need: An inflatable pool air mattress.

How to Play: Inflate a pool air mattress and see how many kids can pile on to it without falling off. For more fun, under inflate the air mattress to make it less stable.

Safety Note: Don't allow pushing, and be sure that the air mattress is well into the center of the pool, away from the pool wall where someone could strike their head.

Boogie Board Relay

What You Need: Two boogie boards and two pool noodles.

How To Play: Divide everyone into two relay teams and send each to their own end of the pool. One player at a time kneels on a boogie board and holds one end of a pool noodle, while a partner from their team drags them across the swimming pool to the other end, and returns them to the starting point. The first team to have each of their players complete their round trip, wins!

Safety Note: The racers should drag each other as close to the center of the pool as possible, to avoid hitting the pool walls.

Jump the Noodle

What You Need: A pool noodle and someone that can tread water well.

How to Play: Position your leader (that can tread water well) in the deep end of the pool. Have them hold the noodle a predetermined distance from the end of the diving board or pool wall. Have each player attempt to jump over the noodle. After each round, progressively position the noodle further away. Once a player misses jumping over the noodle, they are out. The last person standing is the winner!  

Safety Note: This game should be played in the deep end only. Players should only try to jump over the noodle, and not attempt to dive. As always, no running on the pool deck or diving board!

Bottle Quest

What You Need: A CLEAR plastic 2-liter bottle, emptied, washed and with the labels removed, and two outdoor chairs.

How To Play: Fill the bottle up completely with pool water, and put the cap on tightly. Divide everyone into two teams and send them to opposite ends of the pool. Place one outdoor chair at each end of the pool to act as a goal.

Have the teams line up along the pool wall, and face away from the center of the pool with their eyes closed. As soon as a parent tosses the bottle into the center of the pool, everyone can turn around, open their eyes, and try to find the bottle.

The object is to get the bottle to the other team’s chair. Getting the bottle successfully into a chair is worth 1 point. After a point is scored, start over by having the teams line up along the pool wall again. The first team to 3 points, wins!

Safety Note: The 2-liter is difficult to see because it is clear, and filled with water. Encourage players to “be sneaky” with the bottle, instead of rough housing to secure the bottle from the other team.

Pool Battleship

What You Need: Assorted pool floats, noodles, tubes, boogie boards, etc.

How to Play: Separate players into two teams and send them to opposite ends of the pool. Each team builds a large “ship” out of the assorted pool floats, noodles, etc. that are available. Each team tries to get to the other side of the pool without falling into the water or being tagged by a member of the opposite team. Add water guns and lots of splashes to amp up the fun!

Safety Note: Be sure that the teams stay towards the center of the pool, away from the pool wall where someone could strike their head.

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