best sports toys for boys aged 5 to 8

Best Sports Toys for Boys Aged 5 to 8 is the first in a series of posts regarding the best choices for gifts for your favourite little guys or girls. Although this selection of toys is aimed at boys, there is no reason why these aren’t suitable for girls too.

As a member of the female population, I find it a lot easier to buy gifts for girls, especially little girls. I just think of all the things I would like to play with if I was young again. Easy, right? But, what do you buy for little boys? There is a lot of choice out there but, the majority seems to be tailored to specific hobbies and what not like sports, construction, mechanics and track.

Being from a boy dominant family and raising 2 of my own, we girls are well and truly outnumbered so, I really should be an expert in boy’s toys by now. For tips on raising boys, click here. With this in mind, one post is not enough to discuss all the possibilities. Here, you will find a breakdown of my top best sports toys for boys aged 5 to 8; a detailed list of possible options to help you buy for the little boy in your family.

Please note One Mum and her Boys are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites. As such this post does contain some affiliate links.*

When looking for the best sports toys for boys, the first port of call is always usually football. Who doesn’t have a little boy who loves to kick a ball about? Well, actually, Tink isn’t big on being outdoors but, on the odd occasion where he takes that step and ventures into the unknown, he does tend to lob the ball over the fence an awful lot. Whether this is due to talent or just the fact that he wants to piss off his brother, I do not know, probably the latter.

Football Nets

If you are considering investing in a good football net, you can pick up a decent one for about £20 to £30, sometimes in B&M or Home Bargains. Amazon also has a huge range of nets from pop up to pro. This little one below (affiliate link*) is a good starter net and comes with its own carry case for storage when not in use. They use nets similar to this in Tink’s football club so, it is one of the most perfect sports toys for boys ages 5 to 8.

Please note: I get commissions for purchases you make through links in this post.*

Some of the sturdier nets on Amazon cost a lot more that £50 but, Smyths sell this one for £29.99 (not an affiliate link). They also have a wide range of larger pro nets but, these are at a higher cost.

Balls and Accessories

Now that we have a net, your little guy will of course need a ball. These are easy to come buy. You can pick up a cheap ball pretty much anywhere, even the pound shop. However, if buying a gift, you don’t really want to go for cheapest of the cheap. A decent leather ball will last for years. You can get a good Mitre ball on Amazon for a pretty reasonable price. (affiliate link*)

When considering the best sports toys for boys aged 5 to 8, we must include a little cone and ball kit. This combo set from Smyths is ideal. (Not affiliate) My brother also bought Pup a small set for his birthday this year, along with a decent net (pictured above). He loves it.

Just as a side note, the ball in the image did not come with the set. That ball currently resides in the playhouse and access is blocked by a huge spiders web. There is a great big spider sitting pride of place in the middle so, Yeh … No! Mrs Spider can stay where she is as can the ball.

Hover Football

Another option to the standard football is a hover football, ideal for indoor play on rainy days. Personally, I think these are mega cool and again, seem to be quite popular as you can pick these up anywhere online. There are so many different variations to choose from. The one below (affiliate link*) comes as a pack of 2 and is highly rated on Amazon although, you can get a cheaper one from Smyths or (Not affiliate links*)

I loved basketball when I was little. I even had a large, outdoor hoop bolted onto the wall so, I was quite pleased when Tink showed an interest. So far we have bought our two small nets but, they still manage to have a lot of fun, making them great sports toys for boys and girls alike. Our most recent purchase was by Nerf (pictured above) and, although it gives hours of play, the back board is just a piece of cardboard. It is quite flimsy overall. There are better ones out there.

This one from Amazon has great reviews and seems to be made of sturdier material. If you decide to buy just be prepared to invest in some good ear plugs too. Indoor basketball played against a door WILL get noisy.

Please note: I get commissions for purchases you make through links in this post.*

For an outdoor option there are portable, adjustable stands out there which are great for kids however, if you want a decent one then you have to be prepared to pay a little more closer to £50. The below (affiliate link*) is the best I could find based on reviews and price. If you want to invest in something that lasts this is a good choice. It seems to be good for children of Tink’s age but, is high enough that it will work for older children too.

Racket Sports

Swing Ball

You will see a theme here. Pup is an outdoor boy. He loves active activities like football so, quite a lot of his birthday gifts this year were outdoor sports related toys. Many of the items described in this post, including Swing Ball, are gifts he received. Swing Ball is a fantastic, alternative option for children like Pup as it helps teach hand eye coordination, being one step off of Tennis. It just had to make my list of best sports toys for boys aged 5 to 8.

Pup’s Gran bought this from Smyths for £20 so, it is extremely affordable. This version is for beginners and is ideal for little kids. Older children would probably benefit from the next stage up but, please bear in mind it is more expensive. You can buy it below on Amazon Prime. (Affiliate link*)

Please note: I get commissions for purchases you make through links in this post.*


A step up from Swing Ball would be Tennis. There are lots of Tennis sets that you can buy for children which come with 2 racquets and a ball. Tink loves playing with these (pictured above). It is one of the few outdoor activities that he will hound us to dig out. I mean, he is no Andy Murray but, he can swing a racquet better than he can kick a ball in a straight line.

You can buy this small set from Amazon (Affiliate link below*) which looks to be very similar to the set we have. I can’t tell you where it came from as it as bought by one of my mum’s neighbours.

If you are looking for professional junior racquets then please be aware that these come in several different sizes so, you will want to check this first.

Alternatively, if all you want is easy, light weight fun, then this Paddle Catch Ball game is always a good go to. We have a set and, they are always a popular choice during the summer months in the garden or on the beach. (affiliate link below*)

Target Games

Lastly, we come to my most dreaded choice, target games. Most of these centre around Nerf, the one thing I detest, mainly because I tend to become the target. Yes I know, we should encourage them to actually hit proper targets but, it isn’t my boys that are the problem. It’s the big hairy man child I need to worry about. P.S. Men seem to LOVE Nerf. They are not only the best sports toys for boys aged 5 to 8 and above but, they are also great sports toys for fully, grown man children.

They become great big kids the second those guns are in their hands, thinking they are some kind of army ninja warriors, rolling around the floor and creeping round corners. My advice, steer clear. I’ve been shot in the butt one too many times.

Nerf Target Practice

We have several large Nerf guns but also a couple of X-Shot too (the cheaper brand for anyone wondering). These are the type of toys that need to be well monitored; Pup has a tendency to fire them up into the sky, to see how far they will go. He has also been hit a couple of times; he is not a careful little boy.

The below (affiliate link below*) is a micro gun. This is the perfect starter option if you are just beginning to introduce your child to Nerf type toys. I held off with both my boys until Tink was 7/8. Pup only gets to play when his dad is helping him and certainly not on his own.

Please note: I get commissions for purchases you make through links in this post.*

For a slightly larger choice, we have the Nerf Elite 2.0 Volt SD-1 Blaster (affiliate link below*). This gun is about twice the size of the Micro.

Now, this next one is Tink’s favourite because it comes with targets to shoot at. It also happens to be my favourite because it deters the man child from targeting me, sort of.

Nerf is something that is aimed more at children of Tink’s age but, there are other options for younger children such as skittles, bean bag targets and archery. I’ve detailed a couple of my favourites below.

Can Carnival Bean Bag Toss

We have something very similar from Asda but it isn’t as colourful or as fun as this one looks. Being an easy game to set up and play, as long as my boys do not fight over who’s turn it is (sibling rivalry at it’s best), it is fun for all the family. It certainly is one of the best sports toys for boys aged 5 to 8 that I have come across.

Sticky Balls & Dart Board

No list of sports toys for boys is complete without a dart board. If you are going to play at target practice then this is the first thing you think off, although, usually in the form of archery. This is a fun, simple toy, great for little hands and will give hours of play.

As I mentioned previously, we have a playhouse in our garden, currently infested with spiders but, this type of toy is ideal for hanging on the wall in there. Being suitable for indoor and outdoor use, it will provide some much needed mummy R&R when it is raining. Just fire it and the kids in a bedroom then sit back, put your feet up and have a glass of wine.

To Conclude

Well this is it. These are my best sports toys for boys aged 5 to 8. From football to basketball, racquet sports to target practice, I have tried to be as thorough as possible. However, if I have missed any vital category or, if there is something you would like me to include then please just leave a message in the comments.

For the best construction toys for boys aged 5 to 8, please click here.

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