5 Fun & Educational Karate Games for Kids
Whether you’re a karate teacher or you’re looking for games for a martial arts-themed event, we’ve got you covered. These five karate games are perfect as part of a warm up during a lesson, or just for fun. While the games are not dangerous, we’ve included some tips on how to ensure that everyone stays safe when playing.
- Sensei Says
A twist on the classic game of ‘Simon Says’, in this version you use karate poses. So instead of getting kids to put their hands on their head, or stand on one leg, you could get them to do the stances they’ve learned. You can give the game a karate-themed spin by giving your commands with “Sensei says” instead of “Simon says”. As with the ‘Simon Says’ game, kids will learn discipline and attention. Of course, they’re out if they move when you don’t say “Sensei says”. Kids learn to pay close attention to instructions, which will give them a great basis to learn martial arts. Plus, it’s a good way to test which moves they’ve remembered and which ones need more practice.
- Over & Under
This game involves having all the kids get into a wide circle with the teacher in the middle. The teacher then swings an object through the circle, either up high or low down. The goal is for the kids to duck if the object is up high or jump over it if it’s at foot-level. Be sure to get the kids to spread out so that you can alternate going high or low. Anyone who trips over or gets hit is out. For safety reasons, it’s recommended to use a foamy, soft object such as a pool noodle and not to swing too hard.
- Number Sequence
In this game, you assign a number to each of the moves that the class is working on. Then call out these numbers, in order, to see how well they have mastered each of the moves. Once you’ve repeated the sequence a few times, you can begin to make it more difficult. Speed up the numbers, call them out in a random order and even add more moves to the sequence. This will help them perfect their memory skills as they have to remember which move goes with which number.
- Drop and Kick
The goal in this game is to kick an object before it hits the ground. The teacher will stand at the front of the class and the students will take it in turns. Each student stands in front of the Sensei, who drops an object which the student must kick before it hits the ground. This game tests their speed and reflexes. A variation could be to use different moves and motions. In the interest of safety, choose a soft object and have the rest of the class stand back to avoid getting hit.
- Pin the Black Belt on the Samurai
We all know ‘Pin the Tail on the Donkey’, well this is the karate version! Print out a large poster of a person wearing karate gear. An outline would work best as you want to leave the belt area blank, that way the kids know where to aim. Cut out black strips of paper or ribbon for the belts and pop their names on each one. You could even give each person a different color so that it’s obvious who won. You’ll want to apply glue or double-sided tape to the belt for easy sticking. All that’s left is to blindfold them, spin them round a couple times and let them pin!