Due to the method of information dissemination associated with fitness, we are all very familiar with the reasons why we should work out; but why is it that we only think to keep our bodies active and give less attention to our brains? After all, we all learned in science classes that our brain serves as the mighty control hub of our central nervous system and that kind of power needs some tender loving care. In this blog post, we identify four simple ways to keep your brain active in order to prevent cognitive decline.
4 Brain Exercises & Memory Games
1. Brain teasers: Word puzzles like crosswords, memory games and number games like Sudoku are all great ways to exercise your brain while working your memory muscles. Whether you want to play with a pen and paper or you’re interested in playing sudoku online, there are plenty of options available at any time. You can do an old fashion card game, use a pen and paper for your activities or download apps and play video games like a brain test to keep your mind focused and strong. The MemTrax test is also a great resource for exercising your memory! Jigsaw puzzles are also good if you are more of a visual learner. Online gaming sites like Im-a-puzzle.com offer thousands of online jigsaw puzzles to choose from, all for free. You can pick the design you like and customize the game settings including the number of pieces, sizes, and more.
2. Try to be ambidextrous: We each have a dominant side in our body and become comfortable doing tasks with one hand rather than the other; but did you know that switching up which hand we use is actually switching which side of the brain is controlling it? That’s right! Simply switching up your daily routine will challenge you, but your brain will be working hard and your memory will thank you. Try using your opposite hand to play memory games and get double the exercise!
3. Read, read and read some more: Reading is much like playing memory games; it makes you think differently each time you do it and keeps your brain active throughout a subtle yet effective task. Try reading new and challenging genres, such as mystery. Mystery books are much like memory games as they make you ask questions about details and use your memory to determine the answer. Find a time every day to read a new book, pick up the newspaper or a magazine. You can both relax and exercise! When is the last time you could say that at the gym?
4. Learn a second, third or even fourth language: Linguistics work your brain like a stair master works your legs; it can be hard but totally worth it in the end. Try taking an adult language course or purchasing language learning systems like Rosetta Stone. Pick a language that interests you and start learning! Perhaps when you learn the full language you can plan a trip to the country where it originated!
Our brains serve a specific and powerful purpose, one that must be given constant attention in order to protect ourselves from future conditions of decline like dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Be sure to be mindful of your mental health, and above all else, keep your brain active and engaged. To learn more about fun memory activities like the MemTrax memory test, visit our testing page today!