Tag is a game that many of us played growing up. When my kids were younger we enjoyed playing tag or other chasing games. When my kids were toddlers they loved it when I chased them through the house trying to “get” them. They also enjoyed chasing me through the house. As they got a little older the chase games got a little more advanced. We had to move them outside since the games started to involve a few more people and we needed more space. During our games of tag my kids would get creative and create “safe” zones or bases where they could not be tagged. We played many variations of freeze tag. We had a lot of fun playing tag. Not only was it fun for all of us but it was a great workout. 15-20 minutes of playing tag can wear you out. I addition to being fun and a great way to get some physical activity there are many additional benefits to playing tag. These are just a few of the many benefits of chasing and fleeing or tag games.
1. Minimal Equipment
Tag requires very little if any equipment. You just need a large enough space to accommodate the size of the group. You can add hula hoops or balls to create other versions of tag.
2. Play with a small or large group
Tag can be played with 2 or 3 people or it can be played with a larger group. When there are larger groups you can have more than one person be the tagger (it).
3. Improves speed and agility
Tag is a fun way to work on improving speed and agility. When children first start playing tag they move slowly but as they get more comfortable they begin to move faster. Fleeing from someone or chasing someone is a great way to work on speed while having fun. When you are playing tag you do not have time to analyze how fast you are going. You are trying to avoid being tagged or trying to tag someone.
4. Works on starting, stopping, and changing direction
Starting, stopping, and changing direction are important skills for many different sports. Tag is a great way to develop these skills. Incorporating tag games into practices is a fun way for kids to work on these skills that are important for almost every sport.
5. Engages the brain
Tag engages our brain in critical thinking even though we may not realize it. When we are being chased we must analyze the space and find a path to avoid getting tagged. The tagger must decide who to chase, how long to chase a person, or when to chase someone else. All of these decisions are based on many factors that are being processed while the person is moving and possibly becoming fatigued. In more advanced tag games like freeze tag the group fleeing must also figure out how to help their teammates become unfrozen while also avoid being tagged.
Besides being fun tag has many other physical, mental, and social benefits. Get out there with your kids and play some tag.