Today I Learned...
- Gaming can provide numerous benefits for older adults, including improved cognitive function, socialization, and physical activity.
- Different types of video games can be particularly appealing, including puzzle games, strategy games, adventure games, and motion-controlled games.
- Seniors can use a variety of devices for gaming, including console gaming systems, computers, and smartphones/tablets.
- Choosing the right type of game and device can provide seniors with an engaging pastime that also provides health benefits.
aming is often associated with younger generations, but it’s important to remember that video games can also provide numerous benefits for older adults.
Not only can gaming provide entertainment and a fun way to pass the time, but it can also improve cognitive function, socialization, and physical activity.
In this article, we’ll explore the benefits of gaming, the types of video games you should try, and the devices you can use.
Benefits of Gaming for Seniors
Playing video games can have many benefits, including improving cognitive function, boosting socialization, and increasing physical activity. Some specific benefits include:
Improved Cognitive Function: Gaming requires players to use critical thinking skills, decision-making, and problem-solving. Studies have shown that playing video games can improve cognitive function in seniors, including attention, memory, and processing speed.
Socialization: Many video games allow players to interact with others, whether it’s through online multiplayer modes or in-person gaming groups. This can provide an opportunity for seniors to socialize and build friendships, which can be especially important for those who may be isolated or live alone.
Increased Physical Activity: Some video games, such as those played on motion-controlled devices like the Nintendo Wii, can provide a fun and low-impact way for older adults to engage in physical activity.
Types of Video Games for Seniors
When it comes to choosing video games for seniors, it’s important to consider the your interests and abilities. Here are some types of video games that may be particularly appealing:
Puzzle games can provide a mental challenge and help improve cognitive function. Some examples of puzzle games are:
- Crossword puzzles
- Jigsaw puzzles
Many puzzle games can be found and downloaded for free or for a small fee from app stores, such as the Apple App Store or Google Play Store. Puzzle books, such as Sudoku or crossword puzzle books, can be purchased from bookstores or online retailers like Amazon.
Strategy games require critical thinking and decision-making, which can help improve cognitive function. Examples:
Many strategy games can be found and downloaded for a fee on popular gaming platforms, such as Steam or GOG.com. Physical copies of games can be purchased at video game stores, such as GameStop, or online retailers like Amazon.
Adventure games, such as the popular game series “The Legend of Zelda,” can provide a fun and immersive experience for seniors who enjoy exploring virtual worlds. Other examples:
- Super Mario Bros. series
- Assassin's Creed series
- Uncharted series
- Tomb Raider series
- Elder Scrolls series
Many adventure games can be found and downloaded for a fee on popular gaming platforms, such as Steam or GOG.com. Physical copies of games can be purchased at video game stores, such as GameStop, or online retailers like Amazon.
Motion-controlled games, such as those played on the Nintendo Wii or Xbox Kinect, can provide a fun way to engage in physical activity. Examples include:
- Wii Sports (includes tennis, bowling, golf, etc.)
- Just Dance (dance-based game)
- Kinect Sports (includes soccer, track and field, boxing, etc.)
- Wii Fit (includes yoga, strength training, balance games, etc.)
- Ring Fit Adventure (a fitness RPG game)
Motion-controlled games can typically be purchased for specific gaming consoles, such as the Nintendo Wii or Xbox Kinect, at video game stores or online retailers like Amazon. Some motion-controlled games may also be available for download on specific gaming platforms, such as the Nintendo eShop or Xbox Live.
Devices for Gaming
There are many devices you can use for gaming, depending on your preferences and abilities. Here are a few options:
Console Gaming: Console gaming systems, such as the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation, or Xbox, can provide a high-quality gaming experience with a variety of game options.
Computer Gaming: Many seniors may already have a computer at home, which can be used to play a wide variety of games, from simple puzzle games to more complex strategy games.
Mobile Gaming: Smartphones and tablets can be used for gaming, and there are many mobile games available that can be played with a simple tap or swipe.
In conclusion, gaming can provide numerous benefits for seniors, including improved cognitive function, socialization, and physical activity. By choosing the right types of games and devices, seniors can enjoy a fun and engaging pastime that provides both entertainment and health benefits.