Transform Your Inflatable Pool Into an Indoor Ball Court

It may seem that we have reached the point of a pandemic when we simply ran out of ideas on how to change something and create new joy within our four walls. But if you haven’t built your own indoor ball court yet, you still have at least one trick up your sleeve.

I got this idea from Shari Medini of Adore Them Parenting (and co-author of the forthcoming book Parenting While Working From Home ). She wrote me this idea for parents of young children: “Create an indoor ball pit using an inflatable paddling pool and whatever balls you have in the house. Toddlers are especially fond of throwing and crawling balls in and out. ”

I really liked the idea because I was one of those parents who set out in late spring on an important mission to find the largest inflatable pool my hilly backyard could handle. I pulled it out, cleaned it and inflated it in my living room.

Yes, he looked bigger on the inside than he ever did on the outside. But at that moment I was committed, and although my son is 10 years old and clearly was not a toddler, he was too happy to give up math for a while and go in search of every ball that we had in our house. To fill it up enough to jump in, we also added some stuffed animals, a beanbag chair, and a giant 1990s Philadelphia Eagles pillow. (Half the fun was rummaging around the house for soft items.)

Then he jumped. Many times. He pretended to be swallowed and buried alive. He threw soft toys at me. And then he relaxed a little.

If I had younger kids and I was completely dedicated to the ball lifestyle, I would probably splurge on a set of real balls . And then, if I had a room, I could also add a little slide for the toddlers to jump right into them.

Also, I didn’t, but it’s very tempting to try and fill it up with a bunch of inflated balloons – not for jumping, of course, but for the usual lounging around and blinking. Like the strangest and driest bubble bath in the world.

If your inflatable pool is this size, you can also cover it with blankets and pillows and cover the top with sheets to create the feeling of a fort. To be honest, the possibilities here are endless.


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