Looking for fun, sporty activities you can do on a rainy day? Mini-golf at home is a great way to exercise your creativity by making your own golf course, while improving your golfing skills and having fun. The whole family can get involved and you can make it as crazy as you like!
What is mini golf?
Before you begin transforming your home and garden into a mini-golf wonderland, it may well be worth explaining to your kids exactly what mini-golf is. At their young age, they may or may not have seen golf on television, but it is still worth describing to them the differences between actual golf and it’s lower intensity, swing-free sibling: mini-golf (sometimes known as 'crazy golf'!). Better that then your child smashing a golf ball through a window due to a mix-up in communication.
Here’s a quick rundown to the rules of mini-golf.
- Putting only
- 9 holes instead of 18
- Maximum six shots a hole
- After everyone takes their first shot, the next turn goes to the person closest to the hole
- If the ball goes off the course, the shot will be repeated with a one stroke penalty
- If a player is obstructed from making a shot, they are allowed to move their ball the length of one clubhead
Of course, when you're creating an at home mini golf course, you're free to adapt and create your own house rules! These might make it easier for younger children to join in with the fun.
What are the essentials?
- Golf clubs. you'll need at least one putter to share between you and maybe separate putters for kids and adults to cater for different heights
- Golf balls. Amount will depend on the number of players (and may be worth investing in softer balls depending on breakables around the house!)
- Putting sets or alternatively paper cups to work as a target. If you're using soft balls, you can be more flexible with the targets and use mugs or similar. It can help to get a variety of sizes so the mini golf course gets harder as you go!
- Putting mats. Not an essential, but they guarantee a smoother course and make at home courses more fun for advanced golfers
- Alignment sticks or masking tape that will help to shape the areas for each hole.
- Cuddly animals or larger toys. They work as great obstacles and do a great job for adding to whatever world you want to create! You can also use whatever else is in your home from chairs to cushions.
What kind of mini-golf course do you want to make?
As this is going to be a team operation, it’s also worth talking to your kids about what kind of course you want to create. When you're playing crazy golf at home, you get to customise it completely and can set different challenges for different skill levels.
To get you started, here are some themes and suggestions.
- Jungle Golf. Make the best use of stuffed cuddly animals and house plants to create your very own environmentally friendly mini-golf course. Depending on the amount of stuffed toys you have, there’s a real opportunity to be creative here, by basing holes around one specific animal and having them act as one main obstacle. If you can, why not have a few of the ‘wilder’ courses out in the garden? To top it all off and help relieve some of the cabin-fever, why not have the last place of each hole make an animal noise as forfeit?
- Urban golf. Obviously first things first, there's zero chance of golf balls going anywhere near the roads. A concrete mini-golf course could be a great way to make the most out of your outside area, and the uneven surface could provide a few thrills and spills along the way!
- Kitchen carnage golf. Turn your kitchen into your own crazy indoor course. With the use of appliances, utensils and a range of surfaces to select, let you and your family get creative in your kitchen.
- Golfing all round the house. It may require the bonus of everyone in your family giving every room a bit of clean, but why not transform your whole house into a mini-golf course? Dealing with water hazards in the bathroom, bunkers in Mum and Dad’s bedroom, or even transforming the stairs into an enormous ramp, leading down to that final hole.