As seniors approach their retirement years, it’s important to keep them continually engaged. Playing games can serve multiple purposes such as improving their mood, memory, social-emotional well-being, and health.
Here’s a list of 10 senior-friendly activities for you to try out.
PS: You can also get the whole family involved for some bonding time!
Perfect for small and large group settings, bingo is not only an exciting game to play, but also has unique health benefits. It awakens multiple senses for seniors: particularly their hearing, touch and sight. Furthermore, group settings can nurture a sense of belonging with their friends as well.
2. Jigsaw puzzles
Suitable even for seniors with mild cognitive conditions, jigsaw puzzles are a classic.
For starters, you can start with 50- or 100 piece-puzzles to see how your loved ones respond to them. Once they get the hang of it, you can advance to 150-piece puzzles or more!
Many of us are no stranger to this game. Popular among all age groups, sudoku requires logic and memory skills, which pushes the brain to make connections. This is perfect for seniors to keep certain health conditions like dementia, at bay.
For seniors who are more tech-savvy, you may even check out the online versions of sudoku!
This game is a test of categorisation, mathematics and strategy skills. While it’s often compared to the game of mahjong, the rules for Rummy-O/Rummikub are a little simpler. Plus, since the nature of the game requires the participation of other people (two to four players), it encourages social interaction.
5. Online Memory Games
Games like Magic Cup and Catch the Fish put seniors’ memory to the test. Seniors can also up the excitement level by competing with friends. Some competition can certainly keep them on their toes!
6. Crossword Puzzles
For seniors who love a brainy challenge, go for good ol’ crossword puzzles. Such puzzles often evoke both a sense of nostalgia and stimulate their senses at the same time.
7. Strategy Games
Games like chess or checkers help seniors think ahead and exercise cognitive and problem-solving skills. Having a good mix of both strategy and leisurely games in a week provides stimulation without too much pressure.
As part of the AIC Wellness Programme, activity booklets with 16 fun arts-based activities and puzzles for seniors were created. Print out a copy and get your loved one to start unleashing their creativity!
9. Racquet Games
Physically active seniors can take a swing at racquet games such as badminton or tennis. They require hand-eye coordination, and help seniors work up a sweat as they test their strength and stamina. Good game!
10. Arts and Crafts
There’s just so much room for creativity and exploration for seniors. Studies have shown that Singaporean seniors who engage in art activities tend to have a better quality of life. As more seniors stay home during the pandemic, it’s a good time for seniors to channel their inner Picasso!
Games are not only fun, but they also encourage you to work out your brains, no matter how old you are. It’s also a great way to connect with friends and family, and reduce the chances of social isolation. Now, grab a pal and revel in the joy of playing!