Outdoor Family Games are Healthy--for Body and Soul

By: Craig Mecham

The experts are telling us two things these days. First, we don't get enough exercise. We sit-a lot! We sit at our desks, on our couches, at our tables, in our cars, at restaurants and much more. Now, mind you, sitting is not altogether a bad thing, the problem is that we've got the whole sitting thing out of balance. We sit too much. The result is that we're all becoming fat!

It seems that in our modern world, we just don't move around like we used to. We should spend more time running, jogging or even walking. We should be taking more stairs and less escalators. The American Cancer Society reported recently that people who don't exercise are endangering their health just as much as people who smoke! Not only that, but people who don't exercise--even a small amount--are twice as likely to get heart disease as people who exercise.

Years ago when John F. Kennedy was president, there was a craze that swept the nation resulting in large numbers of people walking or jogging. Some tried to see how far they could go in a day. Some went 20, 25 or even 30 miles in a day. Even four decades ago people were worried that we sat around too much. Today, no one is asking Americans to walk 30 miles. Just play an outdoor family game together.

The same experts that tell us we're getting fat, also tell us that even a small amount of exercise each day has a physically beneficial effect. That's one reason that outdoor family games are becoming so popular. They are reasonably within reach of even the most tight-fisted consumer, plus they are a good way to add some exercise to our daily routine.

One favorite game across the country is BlongoBall. It's an interesting and exciting game. It's quick to set up and easy to play. It doesn't require any special skills or abilities, so it's great for anyone in the family.

BlongoBall is played by tossing a bolo made from two golf balls at either end of a length of rope in such a way that it will wrap around the horizontal rungs of a "ladder" type goal. It's easy and fun and anyone can play.

There are lots of imitators in the "toss it, wrap it, score" game categories, but BlongoBall is the original. We've tested lots of these types of games and it seems like BlongoBall is the only one built to last. Some of them broke within minutes of being out of the box. So, use caution when buying a game in this category.

The next thing the experts are saying is the we're not spending much time together as families. Spending more time with your family may not exactly help you stay in shape unless you're chasing each other around the house, but spending time together is an essential part of developing a healthy family atmosphere. Psychology and parenting authorities encourage families to be together for more than just accomplishing the household chores. Families need to have fun together.

This is where outdoor family games are handy things to have around. Most families will respond quickly and easily to a game as easy and fun as BlongoBall. Even teenagers who might normally be less interested in participating in a family activity will usually perk up when the BlongoBall game is set up.

When you're playing BlongoBall it's easy to converse and interact with other players. This is one of the other reasons we like it. It doesn't require such focus and concentration that conversation must come to a stop, yet it's still challenging enough to capture the interest of everyone in the family. It makes family time truly a together time. All the kids, even the very young grade schoolers can play. Plus, you can purchase additional soft rubber ball sets to use indoors in the winter. BlongoBall is a favorite year round game in many families.

Outdoor family games are great for keeping your body and your family in shape! Listen to the experts and get out there and play with your family.

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Craig Mecham runs a consulting firm during the work day and is a father of six the rest of the time. The Mecham family is an ideal test market for outdoor family games. Nothing is allowed to interfere with their BlongoBall tournaments!
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