The best reasons to play video games may not include sitting down in front of a TV or computer screen for the health benefits, but there are some health benefits to playing video games that many video game enthusiasts aren't aware of. Most gamers play games for one reason: because they're fun. The things that makes us happy in life are always worth indulging in; we only get one life and we should enjoy it as much as we can, but there are those who claim that gaming is bad for us.
What are the health benefits of video games? Whether they claim games are making us anti-social, violent or just plain fat, the mainstream media loves to demonize games and make us feel guilty about playing. The truth though is that there are many legitimate health benefits to our hobby, and here are a few of them.
Pain Relief It’s certainly painful where you’re on a 24 kill streak and get sneakily taken out by some camping mofo, or when you lose online to some racist, sexist, homophobic moron on Xbox live. Games can also help relieve pain as well as
Weight loss While formerly a purely sedentary pastime, video games have recently become the equivalent of the angry drill sergeant from Full Metal Jacket. They bark instructions at us such as: "Jump," "Run on the spot,"
Increased Self-Esteem It would be hard to imagine anyone who managed to improve their physical condition through gaming wouldn’t also see an increase in their self esteem. If you’re a 200 pound couch gorilla and "Wii Fit" helped you slim down
Fitness The only problem with the explosion of exercise games is the horrible terms that have been coined by researchers to describe them. I mean, "exergaming," and "exertainment?" Seriously?Despite the icky-ness of
Improved Social Skills I know, I know. Bear with me.Gamers are introverted loners who can’t communicate with the outside world, right? They’re locked up in dark bedrooms and talk in a series of muffled grunts and snorts like mindless animals connected
Improved Dexterity Did you think all that time you spent getting incredibly frustrated with "Trauma Centre" on the Wii or DS was wasted? Well, it turns out that surgery games could be more beneficial than you think.For surgeons, video game
Stress Relief And speaking of shooting dudes in the face, doesn’t it feel good! Whether it’s the satisfaction of blowing guys away in "Modern Warfare" or dragon punching Chun Li in "Streetfighter," there’s something visceral
Improved Eyesight Do you remember when your parents told you not to sit so close to the TV or you would ruin your eyes? Yeah, that was rubbish. The same is true with anyone who says video games damage your eyesight.... well, except maybe for those
Learning This is pretty much a catch-all category for the beneficial things we can learn from games. Whether it’s learning about renaissance Italy from "Assassins Creed Brotherhood" or getting to know the national flags of the
Faster response times Perhaps the most logical of all of the entries on this list, but a benefit nonetheless. It turns out that a lifetime of twitch gaming makes you more likely to react quickly in real life. A study in the journal Current Directions