16 Simon Says Ideas (With a Twist) to Play in Your Backyard

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Simon Says is a timeless game we played as kids in our backyards and lawns. Here is a refresher of the rules of the games to toggle your childhood memories. The basic layout of the game is that one player is elected Simon and the other players have to follow his commands.

However, the only commands to be obeyed are ones starting with ‘Simon says’. For example, when the order ‘Simon says stand on one foot’ is given, all the players have to precariously balance on one foot. The orders meted out that are not preceded with a ‘Simon says’ ought not to be followed.

One by one, the players following commands not originating with a ‘Simon says’ are eliminated. The final player standing is declared the winner. We have prepared an entertaining list of Simon Says ideas to enable us to play Simon Says with a twist. These 16 extremely entertaining ideas are:

1. Simon Says Ideas: Hopscotch

Simon Says and Hopscotch are both classics and are iconic games. What better than to mix them both? This not only combines amusement and exercise but also helps children to master body control. Hopscotch also helps children to manage body rhythm, which is the core of numerous other skills.

Movements involved build body strength, balance, eye/hand coordination, and more. Other amusing outdoor games you could integrate with Simon Says are Musical Chairs, Hide and Seek, and so on.

2. Simon Says Ideas: Imitate Your Favorite Superhero

Can’t get enough of your favorite superheroes in the Marvel or DC Universe? Channel them using this unique idea of playing Simon Says with a twist. The Simon will give you a command to either re-enact some scenes or recite some lines spoken by your favorite superhero.

You can add even more flavor to this idea by using catchphrases like Thor’s ‘By Odin’s beard’. Iron Man’s ‘Genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist’ line is yet another iconic moment, worthy of re-enactment. You can pretend to live in Gotham City or soar the skies with this inclusion in the list of Simon Says ideas.

3. Simon Says Ideas: Solve Mathematical Puzzles Mentally

This idea can be used by a Simon who has a flair for numbers and wants his players to put their math-solving skills to the test. Puzzles can range from a simple addition problem to advanced calculus, depending on the age and knowledge of the players.

More twists can be added by giving the players time constraints. This is a great way to inculcate learning into everyday fun activities, making it more holistic and less rote.

4. Simon Says Ideas: Tap Dance

Gross motor skills involve movements that use the larger muscles in your body. This includes running, dancing, etc. Using these muscles every day strengthens the muscles needed to perform these skills. Tap dance is characterized by using the sounds of metal taps affixed to the heel and toe of shoes striking the floor as a form of percussion.

Play Simon Says with a twist and execute this idea to perfection. You can have your tap-dancing competition on a stage built by you as another DIY project. The player who astounds everyone with his exemplary dancing skills shall be crowned the champion.

5. Simon Says Ideas: Do Jumping Jacks as Fast as Possible

Like most cardio exercises, jumping jacks offer cardiovascular benefits. It balances out your heart rate, increases blood circulation all over the body in addition to maintaining blood pressure. It helps in doing away with bad cholesterol levels in the body and prevents the onset of stroke or heart attacks.

However, the most important aspect of it all is that jumping jacks are a superb way of integrating vigorous exercise with play. The Simon should set a time limit, and whoever does the most jumping jacks in that time frame will be the winner.

6. Simon Says Ideas: Pretend to Be a Robot

This way of playing Simon Says with a twist is bound to get a couple of chuckles. The players can go around making sounds like that of metal clanking and repeat patent phrases in an automated tone. The Simon can join in by pretending to be the head robot with all the players under him.

The game can then be continued while maintaining the robot avatar. This will make it more enthralling, especially for younger kids.

7. Simon Says Ideas: Sing Your Favourite Song

There are few things better than humming to your favorite song in your quiet backyard, surrounded by the lovely outdoors. To add a certain twist to this idea, the Simon can ask the players to stick to songs from a particular decade. Thus, the participants will have the option of selecting songs from the retro 70s, the classy 80s, or the contemporary 90s.

For maximum benefits on a stressful day, sing along to some music. Don’t be shy to break out the air-guitar, which is exactly what the next Simon Says idea is about.

8. Simon Says Ideas: Play the Air Guitar or Air Drums

This idea is suited for both musical instrument aficionados and beginners. Play along to the instrument of your choice on the Simon’s orders and have a gala time. You can even have a mini-concert, right there in your backyard!

Usually, this idea will be better executed where there a larger number of participants and players. The person elected Simon can also join in.

9. Simon Says Ideas: Perform Yoga Poses

This Simon Says idea with a twist can be a bit challenging. Several yoga poses take years to master, but it is essential to start somewhere. For older people with afflictions affecting flexibility and body movement, doing a few yoga poses all while playing a game can be particularly beneficial.

The Mountain Pose (Tadasana) and the Child’s Pose (Balasana) are two relatively easy yoga poses to start with. The lush grass of your backyard will act as a cushion and support your body, minimizing the risks of cuts and scrapes.

10. Simon Says Ideas: Recite Harry Potter Spells

The Simon can bring a hint of the wizarding world into your day by asking you to recite Harry Potter spells. The players can be asked to list the spells alongside their functions and whoever gets most of them right will be declared the winner. For example, if one player says Petrificus Totalus, the other players should fall with their legs in a bind.

On uttering the Riddikulus spell, other players should start laughing. Put on your wizarding hats and draw your wands, you are in for a treat with this Simon Says idea.

11. Simon Says Ideas: Re-enact an Animal

This one is for those souls who want to relive a bit of harmless childish fun. The participants can hop like kangaroos or do frog jumps and make croaking noises. The Simon can either tell everyone to re-enact a particular animal or choose an animal of their choice.

This idea can end in roaring laughter and unlimited fun if everyone partakes in the game heartily. A must-try for the classic Simon Says connoisseurs.

12. Simon Says Ideas: Make A Funny Face then Freeze

This idea is an evergreen Simon Says masterpiece. The players, on orders from the Simon, make a funny face and have to hold it. The Simon has to go around trying to make the players laugh. Whoever laughs, is eliminated.

Nothing is off-limits in this idea. Although tickling is not allowed, most Simons resort to that and the result is quite hilarious. This is a must-try idea if you truly want the authentic Simon Says experience.

13. Simon Says Ideas: Imitate a News Reporter

Journalists or reporters are professionals who gather all the world’s happenings and weave them into informative news for society. In this twisted Simon Says idea, you can deliver the daily news and be the head of a news channel. Channel your inner journalist via this creative and educational idea.

One player can pretend to be the head anchor while others become cameramen and scriptwriters, depending on the instructions of the Simon. Moreover, the Simon can also make every player the head anchor and whoever delivers the most accurate and relevant news shall win the game.

14. Simon Says Ideas: Walk Like A Zombie

Another fun, hilarious idea that leaves everyone roaring with laughter. Being a zombie is about more than donning a creepy costume. It requires serious acting skills to portray the undead.

Try to relax and allow your body to get a little sloppy. Stagger like a drunk person and slump your shoulders. Don’t blink and react slowly. In the end, whoever does the best zombie walk will be declared the winner by the Simon.

15. Simon Says Ideas: Display Some Karate Moves

Martial Arts is a great form of exercise as it has several health benefits. From physical fitness to mental and physical enhancement, martial arts pave the way for people to reach their peak fitness potential. Even if you do not have any experience in martial arts, it’s a great activity to pick up.

Moreover, what better time to pick up a new habit than while playing a game? You will have fun, all while learning something new that is scientifically proven to be good for your well-being.

16. Simon Says Ideas: Do Your Best Santa Impression

This holiday season, a great way to put a new twist on an old favorite game is to make it Christmas themed. Call it Santa Says, get a few players, assign a Simon (or Santa), and get moving.

You can include tasks like singing carols or re-enacting scenes from the Nativity play. You can also adapt the game and change up the movement prompts to target specific skills. This is to cater to the needs of the players involved in the game.

Just like the holiday season brings respite and joy, this game should also provide a much-needed break from your hectic life.


Simon Says that has been played sometime or the other by all generations. You can play it indoors, like a backyard game, with a friend and even with 100 or more people. The more the merrier in this case1

Overall, Simon Says is a game that’s easy to learn and easy to teach. It’s a game that is bound to remain popular for a long time to come. Incorporating these Simon Says ideas with various twists will only help you to make the game more enthralling for everyone involved.

If you are looking for more fun ideas to execute in your backyard, you can try these 17 fun garden crafts. Making one of these 20 DIY backyard projects is also bound to be entertaining as well as educational!

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