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15 Super Fun Relay Races for Kids

Looking for some fun relay races for kids? We got you covered! Here you will find 15 easy and fun relay race ideas for kids of all ages.

Whether it’s a birthday party, gym class, or even just a family gathering these races can be modified to fit any occasion!

relay races for kids - kids lined up to start race

15 Fun Relay Races for Kids

Some of these are classic relays you probably did when you were in grade school. Others are ones I have created and they bring a unique and exciting twist to the races.

Let’s dive into these 15 relay races for kids!

1. Rock, Paper, Scissors Race

This relay race is so much fun! Even my husband said he would participate in this one!

Start by creating two lines of children. The race will have a midway point where one player from the opposite team will stand (there will be no crossing, have the opposite team player stand about 30 feet in front of the children).

The two children starting the relay will run to the opposing player at the midpoint in front of them. The runner and the opposing player must play rock, paper, scissors. The players will continue playing until the runner wins the match.

Once the runner wins they will run back and high-five the next player in line. This player must do the same thing. The first team to have all their players go and come back is the winner.

2. Broken Telephone Running Race

We’re going to make the classic game of Telephone into a race! I love this one because it’s also a great language activity for kids.

Have the children gather in a straight line but space them out. I like to have about 20 feet in between each child to encourage some physical activity. There should be two lines of children.

One adult will tell the first child of each line a word or phrase. On the count of three the children must run to the next child in line and whisper the word or phrase. The last child in line will announce the word or phrase.

The first team to say the correct word or phrase wins the race. If the last child does not say it correctly that team must restart from the beginning.

3. The Floor is Lava

This relay race is also called Newspaper race, but I like calling it ”The Floor is Lava” as it reminds me of my childhood.

Start by gathering flat supplies. It can be paper, newspaper, or even cardboard boxes. The total number of supplies for each team should be the number of children plus one additional piece.

Divide the children into two teams and create a start and finish line. Have all the children stand on their pieces of paper in two straight lines. The extra piece of paper will be on the ground behind the last child.

On the count of three have the last child in line pick up the extra piece and pass it to the person in front of them. All the children will pass the paper forward until it reaches the first child. The child in front will place the paper on the ground and jump onto that piece.

All the children will jump forward to the next piece, making sure to not touch the lava (aka the floor!). This will leave a piece of paper behind the last child. Continue the trend until the entire team crosses the finish line.

4. Teammate Egg Race

This requires some planning, but you can use these eggs for the Egg-and-Spoon race, which I will explain later in this post.

If you do not want to hard boil some eggs, you can always use plastic eggs, bean bags, or small balls!

Divide the children into two teams and have the children pair up with another child on their team. Have the children line up and create a starting point and a midway point where the pairs will run to and return.

The pairs should stand next to each other in a straight line. Have the first pair of children from each team hold an egg together. Each child can only use one hand to hold the egg, but both children must be holding the egg.

On the count of three the pair must run with the egg to the midway point and return. The egg will be handed off to the next pair.

The children can not drop the egg or remove their hands from the egg. If this occurs the pair must return to the starting line.

5. Balloon Relay

This is a great balloon activity for kids!

Divide the children into two teams and space the children out with equal distances between each child.

Provide the child at the starting line a balloon and have them place it between their knees.

On the count of three have the children waddle with the balloon between their legs to the next child in line. The balloon will be handed off to the next child who will waddle with the balloon to the next child.

The first team to cross the finish line without popping the balloon is the winner.

6. Leap Frog

This relay race requires a bit of coordination so it may be best suited for older children.

Have the children gather into pairs and create and start and finish line.

On the count of three, have one child from the pair crouch down on their hands and knees while the other child leaps over their back. The children will alternate between squatting and leaping until they reach the finish line.

The first pair to cross the finish line wins the race.

Kids playing leap frog - fun relay races for kids

7. Over, Under Race

This is a great activity to encourage gross motor movements and coordination.

Divide the children into two teams and have them stand in lines. Give the first child in each line a ball.

On the count of three, the child in front will pass the ball over their head to the child behind them. The next child in line will grab the ball and then put it under and through their legs to the next child. The kids in line will alternate between passing the ball over their head, and then under their legs.

The first team to get the ball to the last person wins the game!

8. Block Stacking Relay

This is a great relay race that incorporates some fine motor movements!

Start by splitting the children up into two teams and form two lines. Create a midway point where the children will run to and return to the other children. At the midway point, place a bowl of building blocks (or stacking cups if you do not have blocks)

On the count of three, the first child in each line will run to their corresponding bowl, place one block on the ground, and run back to the next player in line. The next child in line will run, stack one block, and run back to the next player.

The goal for each child is to stack one block as fast as possible without knocking over their tower.

The first team to build their tower without it falling is the winner.

9. Dress Up Relay

This might be the most classic and fun relay race in the books!

Begin by creating a start and finish line that has a long distance in the middle. Divide the children into two teams and space the children out with equal distances between each child.

Each team will be given a set of clothing (I like using an oversized shirt and a hat). The goal is for each child to dress themselves quickly, run to the next player, undress themselves, and give the clothes to the next player. That child will repeat the same process of dressing, running, and undressing.

The first team to cross the finish line wins the race!

10. Dizzy Bat Race

Since there will definitely be laughter, dizziness, and falling involved, this relay race is best suited for older children!

Have two teams line up next to each other. The first child in each line will put their head down on a baseball bat and spin around it three times. When they are done spinning they must run to a midway point and back.

When the first child returns, the second child will repeat the same process of spinning and running!

It is important to keep the two lines far away from each other since kids usually run in zigzags after they spin!

I remember doing this relay race in elementary school and it was so much fun! All of the kids were laughing and having a great time!

11. Three-legged Race

When you think of fun relay races for kids, this one might be the first one to pop into your mind!

Divide the children into two teams and have the children pair up with another child on their team. Then create a start and finish line and have the pairs space out with equal distances between each pair.

Have the pairs tie ankles together with a rope or band.

When the race starts the first pair will run by coordinating their legs until they reach the second pair of children who will then run to the third pair.

The first team to cross the finish line wins the race!

Vector of three-legged race - relay races for kids

12. Hula-Hoop Pass

Hula-Hoops are a wonderful toy for kids and they make the perfect prop for this relay race!

Divide the children into two teams and have them stand in circles while holding hands. The goal of this race is to make the hula-hoop go all the way around the circle without the children letting go of each other’s hands.

The first child will wiggle the hula-hoop down their arm, over their head, and step through the hula-hoop to pass it to the child next to them.

Whichever team gets the hula-hoop back to the first child wins the race!

13. Penny on Elbow

This is one of my favorite races to help improve body awareness and balance.

Begin by creating a start and finish line and then divide the children into two teams. The kids should be spaced out with equal distances between them. Provide each team with a penny.

The first child in line will lift up their elbow while their hand touches their shoulder. The child must place the penny on their elbow and balance it there while they run to the next child in line.

If the penny drops they must retrieve it, place it back on their elbow, and continue the race.

The first team to cross the finish line with the penny is the winner.

14. Egg and Spoon Race

If you already have hardboiled eggs from the teammate egg race above, then this is the perfect relay race to do next!

Divide the kids into two teams and have them line up. Provide each team with an egg and a spoon.

The first child will balance the egg on the spoon, walk to the midway point, and then return to their team. They will hand off the egg and spoon to the next child in line who will then take their turn.

If the egg drops the child must retrieve the egg and continue the race. The first team to have all their players complete the race wins the relay.

15. Animal Relay Races for Kids

The classic animal relay races never seem to get old!

Here are some of my favorite animal relay races for kids:

  • Bear Crawl
  • Bunny Hop
  • Crab Walk
  • Frog Jumps

Start by dividing the children into two lines. Create a midway point where the children will go and return.

On the count of three, have the children begin the animal race of your choosing. As soon as the first child goes to the midway point and comes back, the next child will do the same thing.

The first team to have all their players go and come back wins the race!

I hope you have enjoyed these 15 unique and fun relay races for kids!

Here are some more fun outdoor games for kids!

Happy playing!!

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