Everyone has been affected by the COVID pandemic in one way or another. Even if the coronavirus didn’t infect you, you still had to deal with lockdowns, restrictions, safety measures that sometimes seem exaggerated, or the simple flood of COVID news and speculations online. Of course, it’s crucial to stay informed, but too much information becomes overwhelming and can contribute to a state of stress, depression, and even social anxiety.
Luckily enough, there are still so many ways of calming down your nerves, relaxing, and improving your overall mental health. According to a new article from the United Nations, the organization is placing its bet on chess for that, the well-known mind game that’s certainly not for everybody. But hey, that doesn’t mean that you can’t try it and do your best to improve those skills!
Online chess is more popular than ever
The UN says that for the past several months, the overall interest in the game of chess has doubled, and more players are enjoying the game online than ever. The organization also acknowledges that chess involves a combination of strategy, scientific thinking, and elements of art.
Games & sports can help support people's well-being during times of crisis, including the #COVID19 pandemic, by reducing anxieties & improving mental health.
— United Nations (@UN) July 20, 2021
Since the age, gender, social status, physical ability, or the language of the players doesn’t matter in order to engage in a game of chess, the outstanding mind game can be played anywhere, and it also promotes mutual respect, fairness, and tolerance, according to the UN.
There’s no wonder why playing chess online became so popular – with the pandemic forcing many people to self-isolate and avoid physical contact, finding refuge in online challenges seems like a great idea.
The biggest chess players in the world (aka grandmasters) usually have a very high IQ, which says enough about how complex chess is. Of course, playing a few games of chess won’t make you smarter, but such a process still has amazing benefits for mental health.