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How to Make Fun Obstacle Courses for Kids Indoors

When the weather lets you down, make your own obstacle courses for kids indoors! It’s a great way to get their energy out and work on those gross motor skills regardless of the weather. These free printable obstacle course cards require no equipment yet are tons of fun!

Whether it’s rainy or too hot, there are so many ways to entertain your kids and get their energy out indoors! These indoor activities are perfect obstacle course ideas without requiring any fancy equipment or tools. 

Why would you need an indoor obstacle course?

There are endless reasons why you’d want an indoor obstacle course!

Weather: Regardless of the season, your kids can get their energy out in a fun obstacle course! 

Schedule: If time’s time and your kids are full of energy, it can be helpful to have them work through a simple obstacle course to shake off that energy.

Location: Don’t have a playground nearby or any outdoor space? You can still have fun inside!

Sensory needs: If your child has particular sensory needs or sensory processing disorder, it can be helpful to make their own obstacle course to create a safe, enjoyable space for them.

Family fun: Especially if you get in on the fun, your whole family will have a lot of fun being silly and challenging each other. Obstacle courses are great for younger kids and older kids, too!

​Inexpensive: Compared to a trip to the water park or amusement, repurposing items you already have for frugal fun!

Practice skills: There are so many skills tested and strengthened through this type of play! Your kids will be able to practice their creative thinking, strategizing, and problem-solving skills while also practicing both gross and fine motor skills. There’s a lot of learning through play!

These are another exclusive set of printables for those that are in our FREE Time to Pee club, so sign up and then sign in as soon as you can so you can download them right away. 

Alternatively, you can use them outside, of course – but they are designed to get kids active indoors.

How to Make Obstacle Courses for Kids Indoors

Ready to get started! There are a few things to consider before you get started, so let’s break it down.

1. Set the scene

What type of obstacle course do you want to build? Can it be only indoors or is it possible to add some sort of outdoor components? What type of lighting do you want to add? Consider adding porch lights or glow sticks for a sensory experience.

2. Consider the age range

Young kids may need to start with a simpler, more modified version of an obstacle course with a safe place to land if they stumble or fall. Older kids will have more muscle control and may be ready to be a bit more daring.

3. Brainstorm kid-friendly activities

Dream up a master list of different activities and whittle it down to 5-10 to keep it from getting overwhelming! Consider including some educational components, like math problems or letter recognition, to tie in different parts of their brains.

4. Set a budget

​Are you okay investing in a few fun pieces of equipment or do you want to DIY this obstacle course all the way?

5. Build the dream team

Who’s actually planning and designing this course?

I highly recommend including your kids in the planning process. If you ask them to come up with a series of challenges they can make around the house, they’ll probably already have a few in mind! They might suggest army crawls under the coffee table, playing hot lava, or they may even have a vision for building some obstacle course infrastructure!

This type of play is incredibly powerful! It’s not only immensely fun and engaging, but they’ll also learn about engineering, communicating with each other, decision making, anticipating how something will work, and more. Plus, they’ll learn real life skills while constructing and arranging activities.

Your kids will remember this day for a long time!

Supplies for Obstacle Courses for Kids Indoors

There are endless ways to reimagine and repurpose everyday supplies in creative ways to make the coolest indoor course ever for kids of all ages! These are some of the best materials to include in your ideal obstacle course.

Pool noodles

These simple tools can be used in many ways and your kids will almost always want to use these as swords (it’s inevitable). Try cutting some down to 1 foot long and have your kids pick up balloons or other items with just the pool noodles for hilarious fun! 

Hula hoops

Hula hoops can be used just as they are as part of a challenge or invite younger children to jump through the hoops laid on the living room floor.

Jump rope

Add some bursts of physical activity, like jump roping, in-between your other activities.

Balance beam

Find a way to DIY your own balance beam for the ultimate obstacle course! You can even use pool noodles for this purpose, especially for younger children!

Laundry basket

Slip and slide around the house nestled in a laundry basket! Young kids will have a great time pushing each other around in a basket or using it to slide down a ramp!

Bean bags

Add a throwing challenge, like tossing bean bags into a laundry basket or other container.

Painter’s tape

This is such an easy way to build your own DIY obstacle courses with a little less effort! Just place the table around the living room or dining room to show how your kids should move around. You can even add special symbols to indicate that they need to jump (X) or spin around (circle). You can also mark off the start and finish line.

Sticky notes

Write special challenges on sticky notes and place them at key parts of the obstacle course. It’s kind of like a scavenger hunt with a different activity each time!

Small stones

Have kids scoop small stones, cereal, or other items into a cup using just a spoon. It might get a little messy, but it’s so much fun!


You can build an entire balloon obstacle course full of different activities, like keeping the balloon up in the air, rolling things down a balloon ramp, trying to blow up balloons quickly, etc.

Lasers or flashlights

Although you’ll definitely want to remind kids not to point these in each others’ eyes, lasers or flashlights can be used during an activity or as part of the design. For example, you can even make laser maxes for an awesome obstacle course!

Cardboard boxes

These are the ultimate DIY obstacle course equipment. Turn these into barriers, slides, or other creations to fit your kids’ imagination! 

Free Printable Indoor Obstacle Course Cards for Kids

Simplify your prep with these free indoor obstacle course cards for kids! There are 12 cards you can print and use immediately. They’re perfect for kids of all ages, including the little ones, and they’re made for the summer season!

  1. Walk to Station 2 like a crab
  2. Jiggle like a jellyfish
  3. Relax – you have had a busy day
  4. Chomp your way (like a shark) to the next station
  5. Gallop like a seahorse to the next card
  6. Bounce off to the next station
  7. Dive in to get to Station 8
  8. Roll like an ocean wave to get to the next card
  9. Quench your thirst with a cool drink to help the summer heat
  10. Clap like a seal as you are nearly there
  11. Swim through to get to the final station
  12. You have finished. Do the happy dance because you are DONE!

We have designed this indoor obstacle course with 12 stations in mind, but because of the language we have used on some of the cards, you are able to mix and match a little.

Want to make your own custom cards? This free download also includes ALL the designs, without numbers and blank cards, so that you can add your own ideas to the stations and extend the activity if you would like to do this.

More cards = more fun!

We know you like to see the cards beforehand, so here you go – these are the sheets that you will get with this download.

First set of 6 ideas for indoor obstacle course

Lots of lovely bright and fun images and colours for the summer; we like the seahorse the most from this sheet. Which is your favourite?

Indoor summer obstacle course: Final 6 ideas

Since many of these ideas are related to the seaside and the ocean, it’s perfect for enjoying during the heart of the summer. These cards are so easy to carry that you can even take them with you to the beach! Connect these fun cards with other ocean-themed activities during the pretend play between the stations.

Lots of lovely bright and fun images and colours for the summer; we like the seahorse the most from this sheet. Which is your favourite?

Pair the obstacle course with some of the other seaside-themed activities that we have on the site, like our ocean themed CVCs games, and our seaside colouring sheets. (Maybe those could be a station, too!)

We also have some summer activity ideas in our shop that are worth checking out.

As a Time to Pee club member, you get 10% off all shop products.

We have a couple of blank card sheets for you to get creative.

<< To download this activity, you must join our FREE Time to Pee club, just click the image below to do so, and then go to the Discounts section within the account page >>

Don’t forget to check out all the other free exclusive printables that you have as part of your subscription:

<< To download this activity, you must join our FREE Time to Pee club, just click the image below to do so, and then go to the Discounts section within the account page >>

Don’t forget to check out all the other free exclusive printables that you have as part of your subscription:

<< Visit the My Account section to sign up to premium site for FREE >>

Thanks as always for coming to visit the site – we do have other summer activities that you might want to take a look at too:

Summer activities for kids

Here are some more summer activities from KiddyCharts for you.

There are more available off site too:

Obstacle courses from beyond KiddyCharts

Here are some more obstacle courses from other sites than KiddyCharts; why don't you come and check them out.

Thanks so much for coming to see us again, and come back soon.


Helen is a mum to two, social media consultant, and website editor; and this site is (we think) the only Social Enterprise parenting magazine! Since giving up being a business analyst when juggling travel, work and kids proved too complicated, she founded KiddyCharts so she could be with her kids, and use those grey cells at the same time. KiddyCharts has reach of over 1.1million across social and the site. The blog works with big family brands (including travel) to help promote their services, as well as offering free resources to parents of kids under 10. It gives 51%+ profits to Reverence for Life, who fund a number of important initiatives in Africa, including bringing running water and basic equipment to a school in Tanzania. Helen has worked as a digital marketing consultant (IDM qualified) with various organisations, including Channel Mum, Truprint, Talk to Mums, and Micro Scooters. She loves to be creative in the brand campaigns she works on. Get in touch TODAY!

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