Game Activities for Senior Citizens

Seniors playing cards

You don't have to give up a love of games; you just need to find games that suit your activity level, as well as your interests. Whether you prefer board games or something a little more athletic, there are plenty of game activities to keep any senior entertained.

Card Games

Card games always seem to be a hit with seniors. The following games are fairly easy to play, yet they still offer enough of a challenge to keep them interesting.

  • Sequence: A combination card and board game, this is an exciting and fast-paced game for strategic thinkers.
  • Phase 10: If you're a rummy fan, you'll love Phase 10. Each player must pass through each phase to win, so if you're stuck behind, things get interesting!
  • Uno: Kids and kids-at-heart love Uno. This matching game with easy rules is a great game for the whole family to play.
  • Pinochle - This long time favorite is available in large-print cards that won't strain your eyes.

Board Games

There are quite a few board games that seniors will enjoy. Here are a few to check out.

  • Mahjong: This tile matching game has been played for centuries. Simply locate matching tiles and remove them in pairs until you can't go any further or you clear them all.
  • What's That Saying? - From Senior Sez Games, this trivia- style game prompts you to remember popular sayings from the past. Two choices are presented for each question, so there's a 50/50 chance to choose the right answer if you don't already know it.
  • Reminiscing - This is a memory-challenging game of past events, music, television, radio, fads, and more.
  • Senior Moments - This humorous game makes light of those forgetful moments while exercising your memory at the same time. It's geared toward seniors, but you can play it with the entire family.
  • Scrabble: Match wits using your knowledge of the English language. Don't dally, though. You only have one minute per turn.
  • Cranium: Can you draw, act, hum or ace trivia? If so, this is the game for you.

Electronic Games

Don't hesitate to take the game controller away from the grandkids! Electronic and computer games often feature advanced graphics and storylines.

Seniors playing computer games
  • 20Q: This is an electronic game of 20 questions. The game will actually tell you what the answer is within those 20 questions. It is almost as if the little device knows what you're thinking!
  • Wii Game Player: This game system hooks up to your TV and uses a handheld device that mimics the use of your hands so you can bowl, play tennis, and more.
  • Civilization III: History buffs will love the opportunity to build their own empires with this incredibly popular computer game.
  • Brain Age - This game is played on the hand held Nintendo DS System. It's a workout for your brain that stimulates and challenges your memory skills.

Homemade Games

Sometimes the games you organize on your own are the most fun. Here are a few suggestions.

Name That Tune

You can create your own version of the old TV game show. Gather together recordings of songs from various eras. Play a particular song and see who can name it first. That person wins that round, and play continues as long as you like. The ultimate winner is the person who wins the most rounds.

Who Is It?

This game is sure to bring laughs and fun to a group of seniors who know each other well. Have everyone bring a picture of themselves in their younger years, and try to guess who each person is.

Beanbag Tic-Tac-Toe

This game offers a gentle physical twist on the old paper and pencil version. You'll need two sets of beanbags in two different colors. Just use sidewalk chalk to draw a 4' x 4' tic-tac-toe board on a driveway or parking lot. Players can take turns tossing their bags into different squares until someone gets three in a row.

Active Outdoor Games for Senior Citizens

There's nothing like having a little fun outside in the fresh air and sunshine, and many outdoor games are easily adapted for players that have reduced mobility. The following games are favorites with many seniors.

Seniors playing shuffleboard
  • Bocce ball - Earn points by tossing your ball closest to the pallino ball.
  • Croquet - Use a mallet to drive your ball through the wickets, hit the posts, and finish the course before your opponents.
  • Cornhole - Earn points by tossing a beanbag onto the cornhole board or, better yet, by tossing it through the hole for more points.
  • Horseshoes - Another game of skill, you must toss your horseshoes close enough to the poll to score. The closer you get, the higher your score.
  • Shuffleboard - Try to slide your weights into the highest scoring area, but watch out. Your opponent may try to knock you off and ruin your score.

Variety Keeps Things Fresh

With so many choices, it pays to select several different games to keep on hand. Try to choose at least one from each category so you'll always have a game that suits whatever you're in the mood for.

Game Activities for Senior Citizens