Obstacle Course (Striking)

Obstacle courses can be modified to focus on one or multiple fundamental movement skills. You can adapt the length of your course to suit your child. Allow children to be creative and create their own obstacle courses. Include striking tasks throughout or at the end of the course to develop this skill.

Set up

Set up one, or a number of obstacle courses in any appropriate space in your area. Get creative with any equipment you have around your house. Chalk, monkey bars, cushions, skipping ropes, boxes, streamers stuck to a doorframe, soft toys/small bags of rice can be used as beanbags to balance on your head, and toys can all be used to help build an obstacle course. Incorporate a striking focus by using the following:

  • A rolled up newspaper and balled socks/tennis ball as a 'mini-golf' game
  • A cricket bat with a large spiky ball for cricket-style striking
  • A pool noodle and a balloon to play keepy-ups
  • A tee ball bat and tee to practice tee-ball striking
How to play
Step 1:
  • Think of ways to develop your child's balance, running, jumping, hopping or even skipping. Don't be afraid to use equipment you might have around the house;
    • Boxes can be used to climb over, skipping ropes can be used to balance on or practice jump rope, pillowcases can be used as a jumping sack! Place soft toys in a zig-zag formation to develop your child's agility as they collect all the toys as fast as they can.
    • The more creative and dynamic, the better!
Step 2:
  • Build the course, incorporating as many or as little fundamental movement skills as you like
    • For a striking focus, use bats and balls (or makeshift ones, like a rolled up newspaper or pool noodle with a balloon or balled up socks!) to incorporate this skill at the end, or throughout your obstacle course
  • Let your child have a play - time them, race against each other, or with each turn, give them a new locomotor skill to try
Step 3:
  • Once you have finished with a course, build another with your child - use this time to allow them to think creatively and show you what they like! Explore different kinds of striking - try striking for distance or accuracy, or both!
Make it easier
  • Make courses shorter
  • Use a cut out from the front of a cereal box taped to a cardboard roll to make your own, large-faced bat
  • Make the focus of your course a simple element of striking, such as hitting a ball along the ground
  • Use a larger ball for striking
Make it harder
  • Incorporate multiple fundamental movement skills into your course, such as jumping for height, skipping with a rope, and running between obstacles
  • Make the focus of your course a trickier element of striking, such as hitting a moving ball at a target
  • If it suits your child, time them and see if they can beat their previous times!
  • Use a smaller ball, like a tennis ball for striking
Activity information
Age: 3-5 years, Kindergarten / Pre-school, Foundation, Year 1, Year 2, Year 3
Participants: 1 +
Equipment: Bats, Balls, Balloon (optional), Socks (optional), Targets, Cushions (optional), Cardboard box (optional), Skipping ropes (optional)
Duration: 10 minutes
Skill focus
Explore these skills for teaching tips
Skill teaching

To assist your child with the development of their striking skills, use the following teaching cues;

  1. Hands together
  2. Ready: stand side on to the ball (use markers to assist)
  3. Eyes on the ball
  4. Step & Swing – step with the front foot towards the target
Activity summary
Physical literacy tips
  • Use things you know your child enjoys - if they like imaginative play, incorporate a story that helps engage them
  • The more creative you can be with everyday equipment laying around your house, the better! It will encourage your child to think creatively when playing independently
  • Use a larger space if you have one, but an indoor space will still work well - strike at your own risk!
  • Play music as you complete or build the course to engage your child