Are you considering building or contracting a company to build your family a backyard ice rink? If you are concerned that there are only a limited number of ways your rink will be used, that should be the least of your concern. Here at 360 SportScapes, we have installed hundreds of ice rinks for families across the East Coast. In addition to the exceptional games of pick-up hockey that are played on our rinks, look at some of the creative games people play on backyard ice rinks!
Broomball is a great game played in gym classes across the US. Some adaptations of the game are played on a basketball court but those lucky enough with access to an ice rink can enjoy the game on ice! Broomball can be played with or without ice skates. Using a small rubber ball similar to a dodgeball and a broom, teams of 4 or 5 players each compete to push the ball into goals. Teams can elect to use a goalie or have all their players on the offensive. Look at this article outlining the rules.
Freeze Skate & Tag
Freeze Skate involves a DJ and a group of eager skaters! The perfect game for a parent watching from inside the warmth and comfort of their home! The DJ will play music (holiday-themed optional), which will prompt those playing to begin skating. When the music is paused, everyone must come to a freeze. Those who freeze make it to the next round. Those still moving are eliminated from the round.
Freeze tag differs from traditional freeze tag on land. In this version of the game, the ‘Freeze’ refers to the game being played on ice. Select someone to be ‘it’ and let the game of tag on ice begin!
Tic Tac Toe
This game is perfect for strong skaters that are also competitive. With either teams or in games of 1 on 1, a tic tac toe grid is set up on one end of the ice. This grid can be spray painted into the ice or even outlined with snow. Skaters race towards the grid with one game piece in their hand. The game pieces can be small towels, hockey pucks, or even shoes. Skaters then drop the piece in a spot then skate back to either grab another piece or tag their team member in to drop the next piece! Speed is the key to this game as there are no ‘turns’ unlike traditional tic tac toe.
Have a lot of speedy skaters on the ice? Create speed races for your family! If your children range in ages, create racing ‘handicaps’ to say, with slower skaters starting ahead of those faster to make the races more competitive.
Ideally, this should be played with softer, foam-filled dodgeballs and if you are organizing this game, be sure players are on the same skate/ size level. Using the mid-line as a boundary for both teams, skaters pick up the balls and fire them towards each other to hit opponents. A hit opponent is considered out, and if you catch the ball thrown by your opponent, the thrower of the said ball is out.
360 SportScapes can add curling point zones directly into the ice providing you, your family, and neighborhood a competitive game that everyone can play. Never curled before? Play once and you will see why people dedicate themselves to achieving Olympic status in the sport!
Ice Rink Skating Skills Activities
Our rinks have also been used by families or individuals looking to improve their overall skating skills in general. This may be a hockey player performing drills to increase their speed skating forward or backward or a figure skater growing their repertoire.
360 SportScapes: New England’s leading Residential Ice Rink Building Company
We were excited and pleased to research some of the fun and inclusive games are played on ice rinks we build for our clients. If you are in the market and looking to have a rink installed in your backyard this winter season, contact the professionals at 360 SportScapes today!