Hobbies for Health: The Therapeutic Benefits of Pursuing Passions in Seniors 

Hobbies can be fun, and they can be a great way to spend your time, especially when you’re retired and have more of it on your hands. They can also give many seniors a sense of purpose. But did you know hobbies can also be beneficial for both your mental and physical health? It’s true! In this article, we’ll go over some of the benefits of engaging in social and productive activities like a hobby, joining a club, and volunteering. 

  • Lowering your risk of certain diseases. There is evidence to suggest participating in hobbies and other social activities may be able to lower your risk of some chronic conditions like dementia, heart disease, stroke, and some cancers. Having fun and lowering your risk of disease? That’s a win-win in our book! 
  • Live longer. Who doesn’t want to live longer? Various studies looking at people’s lifespans show that happiness, life satisfaction, and a sense of purpose are all linked to living longer. Participating in hobbies and other enjoyable activities can help you foster those positive feelings. 
  • Keeping you happier. There is also evidence to suggest older adults who participate in meaningful activities and are engaged in their community feel happier and healthier. They also have a lower risk of mental illnesses like anxiety and depression. 
  • Helping you cope. When people feel happy and healthy, they are much better equipped to cope and recover from challenging situations. Positive emotions, optimism, physical and mental health, and a sense of purpose are all linked to greater resilience, which is crucial as we age. 
  • Improve cognition. Other research suggests participating in hobbies and other stimulating activities may have a positive effect on your memory and cognition (your brain’s ability to think). The more variety you have in these types of activities, the greater positive impact on your memory and brain. 

The benefits of participating in hobbies and other activities just keep stacking up! If you are looking to learn a new hobby or get involved in a new activity, some of the classes SCOA offers at a our center in Albany may be just the right fit. Check out our calendar of events here: https://sowegacoa.org/whats-happening/events/.