When wellness is on board...

When wellness is on board...

Here are five classic games that boost wellness among seniors, writes Dr Karthiyayini Mahadevan


According to a British journal, playing board games not only helps in tackling depression and halting cognitive impairment, but it also reduces the risk of dementia by 15%.

Isolation and loneliness are two major reasons for declining physical and mental health among senior citizens. To combat these, fun and innovative games help in healthy engagement and better quality of life.

It is a lesser known fact that playing board games contributes to a unique combination of physical and mental wellness. Many games build hand-eye coordination and dexterity, which form a crucial part of the elderly years.

Of the various games, here are five that have proven benefits in doubling the spirit of life in the golden years.

Jenga: Requires a high level of concentration and accuracy. One mistake in the placement, and the tall tower crumbles into a dust of small bricks.

Tambola: It results in positive thoughts and laughter and strengthens immunity levels by releasing essential chemicals.

Cards: Gin Rummy, Bridge and Spades are a few card games that keep seniors enthused.

Chess: A game that goes beyond strategy. While chess makes one practise strategic moves to protect the king, it also helps in improving one’s attention span and memory. Mind games like chess reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s too.

Carrom: This game brings four friends together who target the queen. Playing carrom reduces the risk of cognitive decline and mental illness. Making it a part of the daily routine lowers stress and increases concentration.

(The author is head, wellness, Columbia Pacific Communities)