Kickball is a game that can be played by all age groups and skill levels. It is a fun game and an active game. This is a game that is actually played at many levels from school kids to adults, with leagues being held all over the world.
There is even a governing body for this game called the World Adult Kickball Association. For those older kids who are in competitive games and want to be sure they get all the rules correct, this can be a great authority for you to use.
Having said all that though, our rules are scaled back a bit. They are geared to the slightly younger kids and less serious players.
Generally speaking, if you were at school, the game would probably be set up on a softball diamond however you can also set up your own diamond in your own backyard if you want to. It really isn't that hard to do.
You would have three bases and a home plate like in softball. You would also use a rubber playground ball that is about the size of a basketball.
The playing field is set up as diamond shaped however it is actually a square with four equal sides of 60' each.
The distance from home plate to 2nd base and 3rd base to 1st base is approx 84' 10".
The pitching stripe is about 42' from home plate.
Of course for exact dimensions you can refer to the World Adult Kickball Association to get the fractions as well.
When playing with young kids, you can absolutely scale back the size of your field.
I would suggest that you fit the size of the field to the size of your kids. We do after all want to keep it fun.
Balls and strikes
You have balls and strikes in this game just like softball. You can allow 3 or 4
balls and 2 or 3 strikes. In order for a pitch to be a strike though,
it must cross the home plate at a height that is below the hitter's
Foul balls would be balls that were kicked outside of the line from home plate to first base or third base. When playing the game you can determine if you want foul balls to be strikes and if a player can strike out on foul balls or if a foul ball can be an automatic out.
It is really your choice how you want to set it up. Mom and Dad, just remember that having a foul ball count as an automatic out really speeds up the game if your time is short.
Playing the game
Pick your team and set your positions. How many positions you end up
with when playing kickball will vary depending on the number of players
you have, but you do need a pitcher, a catcher and a player for each of
your three bases.
After that, how many outfielders you have to catch balls depends on how many players you have.
The pitcher rolls the ball towards home plate and the batter
kicks the ball and runs towards first base. If the ball is caught in
the air the runner is out. Also if there is someone on base and they run
when the ball is kicked and the ball is caught in the air, they must
return to that base before the ball is thrown there or they will be out
If the ball is not caught in the air and the kicker makes it to base without being tagged they are safe and the next kicker comes to bat.
Here are some additional ways a player can be out:
When you have players on base and the ball is kicked, a defensive player can tag a base that a runner is forced to run to. Tagging the base before the runner gets there forces the runner out.
A defensive player can tag a runner out by touching the runner with the ball before they reach the base.
If it was agreed upon before play began you could have what we call Indian Rubber. Basically the defensive player can throw the ball at a player to strike them out.
Play would continue until you have at least five innings completed, the
school bell rings or your parents call you home to dinner. You can set
the actual number of innings ahead of time, but really, for younger kids
5 innings is probably more that enough.
The team that wins is the one with the most points when the game is over.