Even though the 2020 Summer Olympics have been postponed to 2021, there are still plenty of ways to feel the Olympic spirit this summer. We picked five Olympic sports you and your family can recreate in your own pool. With these tips and tricks, there’s no reason water-based exercise and fun needs to wait!
Just keep Swimming!
Swimming may be the obvious choice here, but it’s also a classic sport that can be reenacted in lots of different ways. There are four different styles of Olympic swimming: freestyle, butterfly, breaststroke, and backstroke. Take your pick and see who in your family can swim the fastest in each category. Just because you think you’re the master at butterfly, doesn’t mean you’ll be undefeated at backstroke—there's only one way to find out!
Strokes of an artist
Annette Kellerman is credited for the birth of artistic swimming. When she toured the United States performing water acrobatics, the spectacle proved to be incredibly popular and was later added to the Olympics. We can’t say we’re surprised by the swift gain in popularity. After all, who wouldn’t love dancing around in a pool? To recreate this sport, all you have to do is play your favorite song, jump in the water, and bust out your best moves! Bonus points if you can choreograph a routine with your fellow swimmers.
Row, row, row your float
Did you know rowing was initially used to transport resources in ancient Egypt, Rome, and Greece? It’s believed that it officially turned into a sport around the 1828 Oxford-Cambridge university boat race. This one takes some creativity, so get ready to gather all your best pool floats! All you need to do is hop on your floatie of choice, grab some DIY row paddles (like your hands), and paddle across the pool to win that gold medal.
Make a Splash!
Diving was included in the Olympics for the first time during the summer of 1904 in St. Louis. The sport originated from gymnasts doing tumbling routines into the water. If your pool is deep enough to safely use a diving board, step on up and show off your best dive. We’ll even bend the rules this time to let cannon balls count! Get the whole family together to rate each diving pose and see who reigns supreme.
Water macro? Water polo!
All you need for a game of water polo is a ball, two teams, and goal posts at opposite ends of your pool. Teams score points by getting the ball through their opponent’s goal post, but don’t forget the rules—your feet can’t touch the bottom of the pool, and unless you’re the goalie, you can only use one hand at a time on the ball. Nets are best for the goals if you can find them, but even placing two chairs outside the pool will work fine. Remember to take a break if you get tired from treading water!
As always, remember to take all necessary pool safety precautions before getting started. After all, games are only fun so long as everyone stays safe.
Lather up the sunscreen and go for the gold!