With over half a billion downloads and continued expansion into different platforms, there’s no stopping Pokemon Go. That could be a good thing, because chasing Pikachu and company may keep players healthier in both mind and body.
1. Getting Exercise
Few games force players to go outdoors and walk if they want to level up, but Pokemon Go has made millions of gamers rediscover their legs. Not only are they scoring a cardio workout, but they’re also getting fresh air. That’s good news for everybody, according to Matt Hoffman, the assistant clinical professor at Texas A&M College of Nursing. Catching creatures, hatching eggs and finding Pokestops to stock up on balls involves a lot of walking, an excellent and low-impact form of exercise.
2. Easing Anxiety and Depression
All that walking may be helping people cope with mental health issues as well, according to John M. Grohol, Psy. D. He stated that exercise can help with depression and anxiety, and numerous firsthand accounts from players on Twitter shared how much better they felt after a few Pokemon walks. It can be tough to leave the house, but since players focus on their phones, it’s easier busting past inner boundaries they previously thought were impassable.
3. Meeting New People
Pokemon fans have always enjoyed a great sense of community, and that welcoming attitude has spread to Pokemon newbies who are just discovering it through the game. Matt Hoffman pointed out that bringing people together gives them a sense of belonging, which boosts both mental and physical health. Before, strangers wouldn’t even make eye contact while passing on the street. Now they greet each other with smiles and share tips about capturing that Snorlax in the park, or joke about the abundance of Zubats.
4. Keeping Your Mind Sharp
The game is simple to play, but once you delve into the world, there’s a myriad of details. All those creature stats and gym battles can exercise the brain, too. People of all ages enjoy Pokemon Go, and the National Institute on Aging has stated that working your gray matter with puzzles, social interaction and education can decrease the chances of Alzheimer’s disease. Not only does the game involve math, odds and achievable goals, many Pokestops are historic or artistic landmarks. Players can power up their knowledge of local history while they prepare to battle a Dragonite.
Pokémon GO by Eduardo Woo is licensed under Attribution-ShareAlike License