Planning a pool party? Prepare some fun swimming games to entertain your guests — and have fun with them too! No matter how old you are, you’ll want to try out the pool games to play below.
Swimming games are a great way to get your guests interacting! They’re especially helpful as a way to keep the kids entertained while the adults sit poolside.
There’s a lot that goes into planning a pool party! You need to figure out who to invite, what kind of food and drinks to serve, and the different ways to entertain your guests. If you’re stuck on the last one, that’s where this helpful article comes in. The only thing left to do is don your favorite swimsuit, put on a fun playlist, and wait for your guests to show up!
Below, we’ve outlined some fun pool games to play at your next backyard bash.
Best Swimming Games For Kids
First up are some fun and kid-friendly pool games to play! Just make sure that there are a few responsible adults around to keep an eye on the children so that they stay safe. Let the games begin!
- Sharks and Minnows: It’s like tag in the water! Break up into two teams (one is the sharks and one is the minnows). Whenever a minnow gets tagged by a shark, they “transform” into one. The last minnow is the winner!
- Cannonball Competition: The biggest (and most creative) wins.
- Treasure Hunt: An adult throws various items into the pool, and the players must race to get to it first. This is best for older children who are comfortable in the water.
- Marco Polo: An all-time classic! One player is chosen to yell out “Marco,” while the rest of the players respond with “Polo.” The first player must catch the others! Whoever is left standing wins.
Best Pool Games To Play For Adults
Swimming games aren’t just for kids! Grown-ups can get in on the fun too with the games below.
- Chicken Fight: Break out into teams of two players. One will have to be tall enough to touch the bottom of the pool while standing. The other player gets on their shoulders so that they can battle the other team. The last couple standing wins.
- Pool Volleyball: You’ll need to install a net in your pool for this one, but trust us, it’s totally worth it! Split up into even teams and play in the same way as traditional volleyball. The first team to get to 25 points is the winner.
- Tug of War: This game is so much more difficult in the water! You’ll need a lot of space in the pool and a sturdy rope to begin. Tie a ribbon to the middle of the rope. The team that succeeds in pulling the ribbon to their side of the pool wins.
- Cup Pass: Don’t be fooled; this game is a lot harder than it sounds! Fill a cup with water and ask the other players to form a single line. The first person in line must lift up the glass of water (without spilling it) and hold it above their head. The person behind them must reach out to grab the cup without the person with the cup looking at them. It’s a lot harder than it sounds!
Best Swimming Games For All Ages
You can absolutely play any of the children’s games above as an adult, we won’t tell anyone! But, if you’re interested in some other games that you can play as a family, there’s no shortage of options.
- Red Light, Green Light: Choose one person to be “it” (we recommend choosing an adult so that they can also keep a watchful eye over any children playing) — they’re in charge of the game! Whenever they yell green light, the other players are allowed to move. You must freeze when you hear red light! The first player to cross the length of the pool wins.
- Sinking Rings: This game will require you to buy a few pool accessories. Pick up some sinking rings, sticks, or other objects. Through them to the bottom of the pool, then separate into teams. The team who collects the most objects is the winner.
- Diving Contest: While this may be one of the simplest swimming games out there, don’t underestimate how much fun it can be! Choose a group of swimmers to be the judges while the rest show off their diving skills. The judges can give very specific instructions, or they can let the competitors get creative. The diver with the most points wins!
Play any of the games above and you’ll have a blast!