Many parents worry that video games are bad for their kids, but playing them actually has a number of positive effects. They improve hand-eye coordination, cognitive flexibility and decision making skills. They also help gamers develop social skills.
Video games force players to complete multiple tasks at the same time, such as looking at an enemy on the screen and keeping track of their health and ammo. They also teach players to recognize patterns and use inductive reasoning.
They Improve Memory
Researchers found that people who played video games for a long time had better working memory, which is needed to mentally hold and manipulate information. They also had better processing speed.
The researchers had the participants play immersive 3D video games or two-dimensional ones for half an hour a day for four weeks, then they performed memory tests that engaged the brain’s hippocampus. The 3D gamers improved their score on the test, while the 2D game players showed no improvement. This is because the 3D games give the brain a strenuous mental workout.
They Help You Make Decisions
Parents are right to be concerned that video games could negatively impact their children’s ability to concentrate, but played in moderation, they can improve cognitive skills and decision-making. For example, action games force gamers to make fast decisions and improve their visual perception.
A study by the University of Rochester found that those who play action-oriented games are better at recognizing visual information and can see differences between different shades of gray. This improved vision can help with activities such as driving, reading small print and navigating crowds.
They Help You Learn New Skills
Video games that involve a lot of action can improve your visual attention and spatial skills. These abilities are important for learning new tasks and retaining information.
Research has also shown that gaming can help you develop your sensory motor skills. This means that you can learn and adopt new tasks more quickly than those who do not play video games.
Lara Croft might not know it, but her famous adventures on Playstation have done more for archaeology than many a textbook. Gaming can also help you develop strategic planning, reasoning and logic.
They Help You Develop Social Skills
Video games help you develop social skills by teaching you how to interact with other players online and in multiplayer games. In fact, many popular games require you to cooperate with other players in order to complete missions or win.
Video games also often feature interesting, relatable characters. From Lara Croft to the crew of a spaceship, these fictional figures can teach you about a range of different cultures and lifestyles. They can also encourage you to be more open-minded when dealing with real people.
They Help You Become More Physically Active
Many video games require players to move around and exercise. Some even incorporate virtual reality, which increases the level of activity. This is called exergaming and has been shown to improve fitness levels.
In addition, some video games promote pro-social behavior and help players cooperate with other teammates. This type of gameplay is becoming increasingly popular with employers, who think it’s a great way to build teamwork skills.
Studies have found that people who play video games with supportive groups work out harder than those who participate in standard exercise programs. They also feel more satisfied with their workouts and have a sense of ownership over their exercise routines.
They Help You Improve Your Vision
Video games can be a great way to improve your eyesight. Research has shown that playing video games can help you sharpen your focus and see better in low lighting. However, you should avoid excessive video gaming as it can cause eye strain and dry eyes.
Researchers have found that gamers who play high-action video games, especially first-person shooter games, become 58 percent better at perceiving slight differences in shades of gray. This is a significant improvement in vision and can have real-life benefits, such as being able to keep track of your friends in crowded spaces.
They Help You Develop Decision-Making Skills
While video games have been criticized for being addictive and damaging children’s social development, they can actually be beneficial when used in moderation. In fact, researchers have found that video games can improve cognitive skills and decision-making abilities.
In one experiment, gamers were able to make decisions faster than non-gamers without sacrificing accuracy. This is because gaming helps develop pattern recognition, inductive reasoning and hypothesis testing. Many games also require players to think strategically and manage their resources. This skill can be useful in the real world as well.
They Help You Develop Problem-Solving Skills
Playing video games helps you develop problem-solving skills, according to research. This is particularly true for action games that require hand-eye coordination. They can also help you develop pattern recognition and inductive reasoning.
However, you should be aware that excessive gaming can lead to negative effects. These include poor social development, lying to family members about how long you’ve been playing and self-imposed isolation in order to play more. These problems can be avoided with proper parenting and moderation. However, video games do provide many benefits that can be beneficial to your life and career.
They Help You Develop Multitasking Skills
While video games can be negatively viewed for their violence and lack of social interaction, research shows that gaming improves cognitive skills when played regularly and in moderation. Video games also develop skills like multitasking and hand-eye coordination.
Researchers used a virtual game called NeuroRacer to test participants on their ability to perform multiple tasks at once. They found that gamers performed better than non-gamers and their multitasking abilities remained stable over time.
They Help You Develop Executive Functions
Video games often require players to remember a great deal of information and react quickly. This helps them develop their ability to concentrate and process information quickly.
Researchers have also found that gamers who regularly play action-based games are better at registering visual information and are more resistant to perceptual interference. This translates into faster and more accurate visual learning.
While video games can help you improve your cognitive skills, it is important to note that they can also have negative effects when used in excess. Heavy video game use can cause a number of health and social problems, including poor academic performance.