35 DIY Obstacle Courses for Kids That Anyone Can Build


Obstacle courses are terrific for field days, phys ed class, summer camps, birthday parties, and so much more. These DIY obstacle courses for kids are easy enough for anyone to create. We’ve got indoor and outdoor options too. Get ready to show off your moves!

Toddlers climbing under hoops and through circles made of pool noodles in a DIY obstacle course for kids
Friday We’re in Love
Child navigating DIY obstacle courses for kids based on the American Ninja TV show
Frugal Fun for Boys and Girls

2. DIY American Ninja Warrior obstacle course

If kids can’t get enough of the hit show, they’ll love this course inspired by the ones they’ve seen top-notch athletes tackle on TV.

Learn more: American Ninja Obstacle Course

Collage of DIY obstacle courses for kids using items from the dollar store
Starts at Eight

3. Dollar store DIY obstacle course

In addition to pool noodles, you can pick up all sorts of inexpensive items at the dollar store to incorporate into obstacle courses for kids. Don’t be afraid to be creative!

Learn more: Dollar Store Obstacle Course Ideas

An obstacle course for kids drawn with chalk on a sidewalk, starting with a grid of letters where kids must jump to spell out their name in this example of obstacle courses for kids
Sparkling in Second

4. Sidewalk chalk obstacle course

Sidewalk chalk obstacle courses don’t require any special equipment, and they’re perfect for a playground or neighborhood. Add your own creative elements to challenge kids, and don’t be surprised when adults join in too.

Learn more: Chalk Obstacle Course

A collage of photos showing children running through an obstacle course with a Super Mario theme
Kids Activities Blog

5. Super Mario obstacle course

Video game fans, put down the controllers and jump into the action instead! This clever course lets kids feel like they’re living out their favorite game.

Learn more: DIY Super Mario Party With Obstacle Course

A child riding a hobby horse and stick a cardboard tube through a hoop
Amy Latta Creations

6. Knight’s jousting course

Travel back to days of yore, and turn kids into knights as they take on this unique course idea. If you don’t want to sew your own hobby horses, just make paper heads to attach to broomsticks instead.

Learn more: Knights and Dragons Party: Jousting Obstacle Course

Little girl in a bathing suit running through a backyard obstacle course with sprinklers and other water features in this example of obstacle courses for kids
Meaningful Mama

7. DIY water obstacle course

Every kid gets excited when you add water into the fun! Dash through sprinklers, jump into kiddie pools, and dodge water balloons to make your way to the end.

Learn more: Water Obstacle Course

Child setting up colorful plastic cones as part of a rainbow-themed obstacle course in this example of obstacle courses for kids
Sunny Day Family
Toddler climbing through a hula hoop with jingle bells attached to it in this example of obstacle courses for kids
Childhood 101

9. Don’t Ring the Bells course

Kids will need to move quickly but carefully if they’re going to make it through this one! Attach jingle bells to a variety of obstacles, and challenge little ones to complete the course without making a sound.

Learn more: Don’t Ring the Bells Obstacle Course

Child throwing a NERF football at a stack of colorful plastic cups
Toys R Us

10. Nerf obstacle course

We love obstacle courses that include tasks to complete, like cups to stack or targets to hit. This one fits the bill perfectly.

Learn more: Nerf Obstacle Course

Child climbing through a hoop stuck into a pile or snow in this example of obstacle courses for kids
Paper Heart Family

11. Snowy obstacle course

Winter doesn’t have to slow you down! In fact, snowy landscapes add their own special challenges to a good obstacle course.

Learn more: 13 Snow Obstacle Course Ideas for Winter

Child climbing over and under strings taped to a wall, trying not to touch them in this example of obstacle courses for kids
Frugal Fun for Boys and Girls

12. Spy training course

Head to spy training school and learn to wriggle, duck, slide, and maneuver with the best. You can build a course like this one indoors or out.

Learn more: Make an Indoor Spy Obstacle Course

Two children hanging up their backpacks on hooks on the wall
Coffee Cups and Crayons

13. School skills obstacle course

Getting ready to start school? Use this ingenious idea to teach kids skills they need to know, like hanging up backpacks, sharpening pencils, and more.

Learn more: Teach Independent Skills for Kindergarten

A map drawn on a whiteboard showing the plans for a backyard obstacle course
Jac of All Things

14. Backyard obstacle course

Tip: Let kids design their own DIY obstacle courses for each other—they’ll love it! Lay them out on paper (or whiteboards) first, then build what you’ve envisioned.

Learn more: Backyard Obstacle Course Party for Kids

Toddler walking along a masking tape line on a floor
Hands On as We Grow

15. Masking tape DIY course

Grab some painter’s tape in different colors and plan out a fun movement adventure. Assign a different color of tape to each kid, then create paths that cross and separate, requiring them to really think about what they need to do next.

Learn more: Masking Tape Course

Child standing at the beginning of a maze made of CAUTION tape strung from stakes
Our Curious Home

16. DIY maze obstacle course

Building a maze like this is fun, but if you add some obstacles around the various twists and turns, it gets even better!

Learn more: Family Fun Fair Caution Tape Maze

A toddler completing an indoor obstacle course by jumping across colored plastic stepping stones
Celebrating With Kids
Child crawling over exercise balls balanced on inflatable rings, as part of a Wipeout themed obstacle course
Mob Truths

18. Backyard Wipeout course

This one is inspired by another popular TV show, and kids will adore getting the chance to take on similar challenges right at home.

Learn more: Wipeout Theme Party

Toddlers climbing through a crepe paper curtain strong across two chairs
My Little Happies
Kids using squirt guns to propel plastic cups along strings strung over a swimming pool
This Grandma Is Fun

20. Squirt gun obstacle course

This combines a bit of a STEM challenge with obstacles. String a course throughout your yard with plastic cups attached. Kids have to use squirt guns to move the cups along—no touching with your hands!

Learn more: Squirt Gun Races Obstacle Course

Toddler stretching up to pick a plastic ball off a white column
The Inspired Treehouse

21. Apple-picking DIY obstacle course

This sweet little idea helps wee ones build their agility and motor skills. Simply attach red and green plastic balls to various locations along the course with packing tape. Kids “pick the apples” as they go along.

Learn more: Apple-Themed Obstacle Course for Kids

Two kids balancing on narrow beams, holding a plate between them
Learn as You Play

22. Balancing-act course

Everything gets trickier when two kids have to work together to complete a course. Whether they’re balancing along planks or trying to figure out how to go over or under an obstacle without dropping their plate, they’ll learn important lessons in teamwork.

Learn more: Balancing Plate Activity! 4+

Child following a string obstacle course maze
Hands On as We Grow

23. Follow the String course

All you need is a ball of yarn to create a course that will keep kids busy for ages! Create a giant web for them to follow. The only rule is they can’t let go of the string.

Learn more: String Obstacle Course

A series of letter cards hanging from a doorway spelling out the word
How Wee Learn

24. Alphabet DIY obstacle course

Sneak some learning into the active fun with this smart idea. You can add an alphabet aspect into any kind of course.

Learn more: Alphabet Obstacle Course for Kids

Child crawling through the mud underneath planks laid across hay bales in this example of obstacle courses for kids
Our Little Backyard Farm

25. DIY mud run course

If you’re willing to get pretty messy, a mud run can be a real blast. Put on your oldest clothes and dive right in.

Learn more: Kids Mud Obstacle Course

Child balancing on a plank of wood over a round piece, as part of diy obstacle courses for kids
How To Run a Home Daycare

26. Loose parts DIY obstacle course

Provide kids with simple items like planks, logs, and more. Then let them design their own DIY obstacle course for others to take on.

Learn more: Kids Bored? Introduce Loose Parts Play!

Children working their way over and under a series of ropes in an obstacle course
Celebrate Every Day With Me

27. “In TRAINing” obstacle course

This mom designed a course inspired by the TV show Chuggington, which is all about trains. If your kids love it too, then this is a must-try.

Learn more: “In Training” Obstacle Course

28. Easy Hula-Hoop course

Obstacle courses for kids don’t have to be complicated. A few Hula-Hoops, cones, and balls can be utilized to create a quick obstacle course for the classroom.

29. A bouncy indoor course

We love that this indoor obstacle course uses mostly items that can be found in a typical home. Blocks, Frisbees, couch cushions, and even a mini trampoline make for a great way to burn off some of that extra energy on a rainy day.

A woman from the waist up is seen facing a small toddler girl in a living room.
Love Every

30. Toddler time course

If you think your toddler is too young for an obstacle course, think again! Before getting started, create a simple line on the floor or ground using painter’s tape or chalk. Then, create several obstacles with various gross motor skills in mind. You’ll want to include something to jump on, something to crawl through, something to wind their way around, and finally, something to run to!

Learn more: How To Set Up an Obstacle Course for Your 2-Year-Old

Items like a laundry basket, pillow, cardboard box, stuffed dinosaur, and clothes hangers attached to one another are laid out in a path in this example of obstacle courses for kids.
Hands On as We Grow

31. Clothes hanger obstacles

We’ve seen our fair share of indoor obstacle course ideas, but we especially love the inclusion of plastic clothes hangers here. Get some of the plastic ones, hook them together, and hang them high or low around the rest of your obstacles.

Learn more: 9 Obstacle Course Ideas for Kids That Are Super Simple

Some inflatable tires and cones are laid out in the background and in the foreground a folded Razor scooter is seen beside a green cone in this example of obstacle courses for kids.
Mom Junky

32. A scooter finish

A lot of kids have foldable scooters and we think they add a really cute touch to an otherwise typical outdoor obstacle course. Use cones, inflatable tires, etc., to create the front part of the course and then place a folded scooter by a cone. Kids will have to unfold the scooter and then ride it to the finish line to win!

Learn more: The Razor Obstacle Course Challenge

A grass lawn is shown with a small chalkboard that says
PBS Kids

33. Sticks-and-stones obstacle course

Obstacle courses for kids don’t have to include fancy equipment. Before doing an obstacle course with your kiddos, go on a nature hunt and collect things like long sticks to use as obstacles. You can buy some hay bales and other natural items if you want too.

Learn more: Nature Obstacle Course

34. Low-prep obstacles

This video has a lot of cute ideas for easy DIY obstacles you can set up in your classroom, home, yard, or playground. Hang an elastic cord and then have kids stretch it around themselves. Save a large Amazon box and open the ends to create a tunnel for your little ones to crawl through.

Several pop its are seen spread across a kitchen floor and a little girl maneuvers over them.
@elizabeth_ot4kids via Instagram

35. Pop-It stones

Leave it to an occupational therapist to create a stellar DIY obstacle course. It seems that these days, most parents have found themselves with drawers full of Pop-Its. Why not put them to good use and create stepping stones?

Learn more: Obstacle Course

What are your favorite ideas for DIY obstacle courses for kids? Come share in the We Are Teachers HELPLINE group on Facebook.

Plus, Everything You Need To Know About Setting Up a School Sensory Path.





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