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Foam Noodle o’ War

2-plus players (the more, the better),1 referee

Any soft playing area—wrestling mats or a grassy field

Foam Noodle o’ War, cones or other markers

Before you can play Foam Noodle o’ War, first you have to make the Foam Noodle o’ War. Here’s how: Take an old bike tire and duct tape a number of foam swim noodles around it until it’s completely covered.

Now get your kids together. If you have enough of them (say, nine or more), separate them into three or more teams and have them number off within their team. Place the Foam Noodle o’ War at the center of your playing area. Teams should now spread out about 10 yards from the center of the playing area. Each team will have a “home cone” situated next to them.

The referee decides whether the kids will “combat (army) crawl” or race on all fours to the Foam Noodle o’ War. Either way, the referee then calls a number. Players with this number race (either crawling or crabbing) to the Foam Noodle o’ War and grab it. They then attempt to pull it over their cone, scoring a point. Of course, the other players will grab it and try to pull the Foam Noodle o’ War to their cone, and a tug of war ensues.

Players cannot impede each other’s progress, nor can spectators assist. Body weight is not necessarily the deciding factor here; players who can get to the Foam Noodle o’ War first have an advantage, as do those who keep their legs driving and their body weight low.

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