Adult supervision is encouraged for the
younger set as golf balls can cause serious injuries.
(If the old farts get hit it's their own
What is the Monkey Bars
Monkey Bars Golf is a popular yard-game played around the USA.
The game is easy to play and fun for all ages.
The game can be played as a twosome or a foursome type game.
The game is easy to setup by unfolding the ground supports and pushing
the hold down stakes into the ground over them.
A complete standard game includes two monkey bars, 3 white monkey
tails, 3 colored monkey tails, and a scoreboard.
The basic concept of the game is similar to horseshoes. Here is
a short introduction:
The two racks with three cross bars simulate monkey bars.
Instead of horse shoes we toss monkey tails which are two golf
balls attached together by a nylon rope. Players toss the monkey
tails hoping to wrap around the bars. Each bar is worth points; 3 for
the top, 2 for the middle and 1 for the bottom. Each time players toss
and wrap the monkey tails around the bar the points are added
until they reach a score of
Details of play and scoring.
Object of the game:
Be the first team to score exactly 21 points.
Two Monkey Bars goalposts and 2 sets of 3 Monkey Tails, 2 different
1. A game can be played by two people or four people. If two play, the
players throw the Monkey Tails at the opposite goalpost, record the
score, then go to that end and throw them back at the first goalpost.
If four play, then one player from each team is at each goalpost and
the players throw the Monkey Tails at the goalpost opposite them. Throws must be made
from behind a line formed by the goalpost. Set the goalposts 25 to 30
ft apart for adults but they can be set at any distance depending on
the age of the players. The Monkey Tails must be thrown underhand by holding onto ONE ball.
2. Each of the three bars on the goalpost has a different worth: bottom
bar is one point, middle bar is two points, and top bar is three
points. The Monkey Tail only earns points if it has at least part of the
rope touching the actual bar. If it is only touching the joint or the
vertical poles, it scores no points. It is up to you whether you want
to count bounces off the ground as scores or not, just make sure the
decision is made before play starts.
3. A round consists of players taking turns throwing a Monkey Tail at the goalpost opposite
them. (Ex: Player 1 throws a Monkey Tail, then player 2 throws a Monkey Tail. Player 1 throws
second Monkey Tail, player 2 throws second Monkey Tail. Player 1 throws third Monkey Tail, player 2 throws third Monkey Tail.) Note: This order allows
players the opportunity to knock the opponent's Monkey Tail(s) off the goalposts. The
first player to throw in the round is the team that scored the most
points in the previous round (or last round where points were scored).
Use a coin toss
to decide who goes first for a new game.
4. Only those Monkey Tails that are on the goalposts at the end of the round
earn points for the respective teams. However, if each team has a Monkey Tail on the same bar, the points
earned on that bar are cancelled. (Ex: Player 1 has 1 Monkey Tail on bottom bar and one Monkey Tail on top bar. Player 2 has
on bottom bar. Team One scores 3 points for the Monkey Tail on the top bar, while Team
Two scores one point for the
second Monkey Tail on the bottom bar.)
5. To end the game: The first team to score exactly 21 points wins.
If a person or team exceeds 21, the number of points scored in that
round is deducted from their score, (i.e.) If a person or team has 20
points and lands on the three point rung which would put them over 21,
the three points is deducted from the existing 20 point score giving
them a new score of 17.
Another example: You have 18 points. Your first toss scores 0.Your
second toss scores a 2 (you have 20).You aim for a 1 on your third toss
but hit a 3 (you have 23).You have gone over, so you must deduct your
round total of 5 points from your previous score, and you end up with
Make two of these
We used 3/4" PVC pipe
Parts of the Monkey Bars
You can glue as much of it together as you want but
the bottom legs need to be able to turn in so it will lay flat.
Make three monkey tails with white balls and three monkey tails with
colored or painted
balls. The Monkey Tails are made with two golf balls (Wal-Mart) and a
21" piece of 3/16"
"Solid Braid Nylon Rope" (nice & flexible) (Menards). I drilled the
7/32" hole first then
drilled the 13/32" hole 1/2 " deep last. The holes can be drilled with
whatever drill bits
you have as long as they are not overly big. I then tied a knot
as close to one end of the
rope as possible, slid the golf balls onto the rope, tied another knot
and pulled the knots
into the larger holes in the balls. I filled the holes with hot melt
glue to secure them.
CAUTION...... DO NOT USE LIQUID FILLED GOLF BALLS!
Use a 3" long piece of 1 1/2" PVC to hold the golf balls while drilling
them. The balls fit snug and are easier to hold. Run the bit in a little
ways and pull it back out as you drill the holes in the balls. This
clears the residue out of the hole so the drill bit doesn't bind.
Hold Down Stakes
The hold down stakes are pushed
into the ground over the legs of the Monkey Bars
to keep the Bars from being knocked over during play. I made the hold down stakes
out of number nine wire & made a loop in the top to pull them
out of the ground with,
otherwise they are hard to get ahold of to pull out. I just cut a
20" piece of wire, bent
them around a broom handle to make the loop then bent the ends down.
You might be
able to use old tent stakes also. I've seen holddowns made from "U"
pipe hangers and pole barn nails.
The Score Board
I will include a couple of different scoreboard ideas so
maybe you can use things you
have on hand. The first one is a flat piece of 1/4" thick plywood
or masonite with the design
shown below drawn or painted on it. You can make it any size you want.
Drill a hole in each
square so a golf tee will fit in it. Use one white tee and one tee
painted the color of the colored balls.
You can also make the numbers different colors as shown below to
designate the two players or teams.
Glue or screw a wooden stake about three feet long to it to push into
The second one is made from a paint stir stick, a 3/8" dowel and two
spring clothes pins.
Close up of the score board numbered from 0-21
Glue the dowel on the back of the score board and paint the
clothes pins the same color as the balls you are using.
Sharpen the end of the dowel so it can be pushed into the ground.
Don't be afraid to improvise. The whole idea is to make the parts as
as possible. I've seen the Monkey Bars made out of 1", 1 1/2", & 2"
PVC pipe, and
1/4" braided nylon rope used for the monkey tails. The knots do
not have to be
countersunk into the golf balls either. Just be sure to heat seal
the ends of the nylon rope.
A poster on one of the internet sites said he purchased some small
tennis type balls at
PETCO and made a setup for his young children. I think old Handball
balls would work
also and be a lot safer for the youngsters. Threading the nylon rope
through the golf balls
is always a problem because of the way it ravels when you cut it. One
way to solve this
problem would be to tie a knot in one end of the rope and put a piece
of heat shrink
tubing (Radio Shack) on the other end, then thread all of the golf
balls onto the rope, slide
two down to the end, cut the rope to the right length and tie the
second knot. Keep
following this procedure until all of the Monkey Tails are completed.
Front view of the Monkey Bars showing the bottom legs.
These should be able to turn in so the bars will lay flat.
Angle View of the Monkey Bars
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