The Unknown Benefits Of Video Gaming

by Hemant Kumar Gupta

From the outside looking in, playing video games looks like simple entertainment.

It definitely looks fun, but there doesn’t seem to be very much else to it. Critics might even suggest that while playing video games is fun, it isn’t beneficial to the player and worse, it can be downright harmful. Of course, any activity not taken in moderation can be harmful to the individual. However, is it true that all gaming is harmful? Thankfully, this is not the case. In fact there are a lot of benefits to be gained from playing video games. Here are 5 that you may not know about.

Improves dexterity – Who would have thoughts that the hours spent manipulating buttons and joysticks would yield real-world benefits? But that is exactly the case when it comes to your dexterity. Playing video games strengthens hand-eye coordination and allows you to manipulate objects easier and more dexterously. Think of it as occupational therapy for your hands. It comes as no surprise then that gaming can produce numerous benefits for surgeons. Apart from making fewer errors during surgery, video games also make surgeons faster when performing complicated procedures.

Community – Forget the image of the gamer sitting alone in a room for hours playing her games. Gaming is in fact a very social endeavor. The idea of community is something that is an integral part of the gaming experience. Gamers love to play with and be surrounded by other people. Even if a gamer sits at his console or PC alone, they are connected to each other and are able to carry on conversations with other players mid game. Thus, gaming has the ability to bring people together despite age, race, gender or geographic location. This is very common in gamer communities.

Increased physical activity – Yes gaming isn’t all about sitting around with a controller in your hand. Newer technological advancements are getting gamers out of their seats and are being made to interact with the game in new ways. Technological advancements such as augmented reality and virtual reality are giving fans new ways to play video games. The Pokémon GO craze of just a few years ago illustrated just how powerful augmented technology is to motivate players to get out and see the world while gaming.

Teaches persistence – Video games present a series of challenges to overcome. Even if you play on easier settings, they aren’t a walk in the park. Gamers still need to strategize and solve problems in order to triumph and this never comes easy. For some levels, it takes a lot of trial and error. It could be hours or even days to pass these levels. But this is what video games teach us–not to give up. It teaches us that through persistence we can attain our goals. This persistence can become even more important when gamers play to earn.

Better brain health – The fact that gaming imparts good benefits to the brain may come as a surprise to many. But it is undeniable that playing video games does have a positive effect on one’s brain. Video games force us to develop certain skills such as memory retention and problem solving. Both of these skills have a lasting, positive effect on our cognitive functioning long after we put down the controller.

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"The Clark Legacy Drs. Kenneth and Mamie Clark and their work," this post is made in partnership with Harlem Cultural Archives, get more at Harlem History.

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