Playing Cards to Improve Mental Agility

by | Oct 22, 2020 | Health Featured

Playing card games can be more than just another exciting way to pass time. Several studies have proven that playing cards can exercise your mind, alleviate stress, encourage socialisation, and keep your mind sharp and active. It’s easy to think of card and board games as kids’ games, but even adults can enjoy different spin-offs of most games. Sometimes, playing the simple versions of card games may help you reconnect with your inner child and improve your psychological outlook and reduce anxiety and depression. Let’s explore some of the other ways card games can improve your mental wellness.

Enhance Your Discipline, Concentration, and Patience

If you’re playing card games against skilled opponents, you’ll need to fully concentrate on the task at hand. Each hand counts and you get immersed in the game for hours without realising it. Avoiding rash decisions that may potentially throw the game also requires a high level of discipline. You’ll have to constantly gather information to boost your gaming skill, then weigh your options and choose the right moments to bring out your big guns.

For those who cannot reach gaming clubs every day, or who have no experience with card games, a valid alternative is UK casinos not on GamStop. In addition to the classic casino games, there are many card games with which to hone your technique and amaze friends. But even then, you’ll have to exercise patience, a virtue that’s rewarded in most card games and is improved as you continue to practise and play more games.

Keep Your Mind Sharp

Most card games involve some form of strategy which requires players to commit their minds and solve complex problems. As you get older, exercising different parts of your brain becomes vital to boosting your memory and keeping dementia at bay. For example, learning new card-game rules and strategies can boost your cognitive and communication skills. According to a study by Alzheimer’s UK that tested a group of people over the age of 60, more participants who regularly played cards, completed puzzles and read books scored higher on cognitive tests. Yet another study by the University of Wisconsin-Madison linked card-playing to improved memory, increased brain volume, and healthier-looking MRI scans.

Help Build Social Skills

In a fast-paced and tech-driven world, people can be lonely even when they are surrounded by a lot of people. An increased tendency to self-isolate increases the likelihood to develop conditions like anxiety, depression, and mental illness. Playing card games encourage people to develop social skills, starting with taking turns, obeying the game rules, and playing an honest game. Playing cards games where you can interact with the croupier and other players is an excellent way to break the ice and motivate yourself to spend more time with others. Some card games also encourage teamwork, boost your self-confidence by putting you on an equal footing with every other player, and fosters a spirit of friendly competition.

Learn to Handle Losses

Losing can be hard, but if you look hard enough, there’s always a lesson to be learnt. Besides, no one likes a sore loser. No matter how good you are, you’re bound to lose a few card games once in a while. Losing in a non-life-threatening situation can help you loosen up, learn from your mistakes, and remain composed when you lose in a different setting. Put simply, card games can teach you to turn short-term losses into long-term wins.

Improved Personal Development

Learning a new and enjoyable skill is always an exciting experience. Card games enable players to learn skills that may look simple on the surface but require lifetime commitment to master. Some excellent examples are blackjack and poker—the basic rules couldn’t have been simpler. However, players always learn something new that can improve their game. The more you practice and catch up on new strategies, the more you invest in a lifetime of enjoyment.

Take a Load Off

Taking a load off and doing something you enjoy is a vital part of self-care. For a lot of card players, there’s no better way to unwind after a long day’s work than to put your feet up, shuffle a deck, and play a few rounds of your favourite card game. You can shift your mind from daily stressors like bills, work, and other personal challenges and delve into a pleasurable low-stakes card game. Keeping your games light will ensure that your nights are filled with chatter and laughter.

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