You may have seen this game before and not really understood what was going on.  The game is called Ninja.  It is an extremely easy game to figure out and explain but can take a lifetime to master.  Youth Ministers like it simply because they will play and analyze it more than anyone else, ensuring that they could beat any youngster up for the challenge.

Here are the instructions:

Size of Group: 

You can play two people but I would recommend starting with at least four.  If you have more than 20 people, it may be good to split them in to small groups of ten.

Goal of the game:

To hit/touch someone else’s hand with your hand.  This eliminates them from the game.


Have everyone stand in a circle, take a bow (like on the Karate Kid), and strike a pose like a Ninja.  One person will move at a time and you will go in clock-wise motion.  Basically the person whose turn it is will try to touch/hit the hand of another person with their hand with ONE motion.  The person they are trying to attack can make ONE motion to move out of the way.  Both people stay where the end of their motion ends and are frozen until it is either their turn again or they are attacked.

How to Win: 

You play until one person is left in the game and they are declared the winner.

Things to Know:

  • You always go after the person who started to your right at the beginning of the game.  The circle will eventually collapse and people may get out of order.  Always remember who you go after.
  • If someone goes out of turn, have them return to where they were.
  • Can set a rule that your hands must visible (recommended)
  • A role, jump, or spin is considered one motion.

Once your youth start to understand the strategy to this game it can become extremely competitive.  It is a great game that most enjoy (especially the volunteers!)