The timeless game of chess is challenging in many ways. It enhances your mental and emotional development while being a medium of entertainment. For centuries, chess has been played by prominent people and has captivated many hearts and minds across the globe. From novice players to seasoned connoisseurs, everyone enjoys this intellectual game for hours.
Besides its entertainment quotients, chess has a plethora of benefits. It can help you in various ways, regardless of your skill level and age. To learn about the benefits of playing chess, follow this blog.
Top 5 Reasons Why Playing Chess is a Smart Move
Chess is not just about applying strategies and logic; it also has numerous benefits. To know what are the advantages of playing chess, read further.
There are many advantages of playing chess and one of the most significant ones is that it improves memory. Chess requires you to memorise specific moves and anticipate the moves that your opponents might choose. When playing this game, players need to keep brainstorming to think about future moves and remember the previous ones. When this exercise is repeated regularly, the ability to memorise and recall gets enhanced. Over time, playing chess can significantly improve short-term and long-term memory. Chess is known to improve working memory as well. They gain the skill to hold and manipulate information in their minds. You can strengthen your memory capacity by making chess a part of your daily routine.
One experiment was done on a group of master chess players and a group of non-players to check their recalling abilities. The researchers found that the expert chess players had significantly better-recalling abilities than the rest of the participants.
Chess isn’t always about straightforward movements. It requires you to think creatively and outsmart your opponent. Chess presents numerous possible scenarios, each one of them requiring a unique solution. To play chess successfully, you need to have offbeat thinking to come up with innovative strategies. Playing on chess sets can also improve visualization skills. By imagining future moves and outcomes, you can train your mind and gain skills that help you excel in various areas of life, including decision-making, critical thinking, and problem-solving.
Researchers tested several students’ creative thinking skills at a school in India. One group had students who played chess, and the other group did not. In the test, the researchers posed situations where the students had to think of an alternative use for some commonly used items. Plus, there were given to interpret meaning and patterns in abstract forms. The results of this research showed that the group of students playing chess regularly scored much higher than the group that did not.
Helps in Developing Planning Skills
Chess requires you to think strategically and plan ahead of the moves. Anticipating the opponent’s moves is one of the vital requirements while playing this game and being successful in it. This strategic thinking can translate into actual situations like project planning and help in completing tasks successfully.
Behavioral scientists carried out the Tower of London test among two groups of people (one containing chess players and the other containing non-players). This is a cognitive functioning test that involves beads and pegs used to measure an individual’s planning skills. They found the chess players’ group to notably have better planning skills than the non-players.
Diminishes Symptoms of ADHD
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is common among children where one cannot focus and concentrate on important things. It is difficult for ADHD patients to stay organized and determined. On the other hand, playing a game of chess requires you to have high levels of focus and concentration. By making children with ADHD play on a chess board, one can improve their attention span and capacity to concentrate.
In 2016 a study on 1000 school students with ADHD showed that their multi-faceted treatment worked optimally when the children were made to play chess on a daily basis. A massive 41 % of the students gained focus.
Protection Against Dementia
Dementia is characterised by memory loss, difficulty with regular chores, and a decline in cognitive function. The mental activity required to play chess can strengthen brain activity and protect against cognitive decline. As chess requires attention, memory, and a problem-solving attitude, brain health can improve in the process. It strengthens neural connections, thus aiding in protection against dementia.
A research review conducted in 2019 deduced that the critical mental capabilities that chess demands can be a great help in shielding older people against dementia. The game challenges our memory and improves calculation and spacial skills, reducing cognitive decline.
Regardless of a person’s age, the game of chess can benefit cognitive health to a large extent. It improves memory, enhances creativity and helps develop planning skills. It also aids in improving the conditions of ADHD patients by increasing focus and concentration. The strategic and critical thinking that chess seeks fosters social skills and promotes mental agility. Make chess your favourite activity and play it daily to savour the health benefits of a chess game, the game of mega minds.