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Four surprising health benefits of playing poker

June 13, 2018

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We all play poker for different reasons. For some, it’s for the opportunity to develop their skill and become a better player, for others it’s for the adrenaline rush they get when holding a winning hand.

For most, it’s about the social interaction the game offers, and the opportunity to sit down around a table with friends and family and bond over the most popular card game in the world – and a couple of beers.

What most players don’t realize, however, is that playing poker has some surprising health benefits. From improving your state of mind to ensuring you get a good night sleep, poker helps us be healthier and happier.

Below, we outline for of the most interesting health benefits:

1) Poker keeps your mind active

Poker is a game of skill, and to improve their ability players must practice and play regularly. This requires focus and dedication, and for the player to push their mental ability to new levels. Poker is also a numbers game, and those who play often will become faster and more competent at mental arithmetic.

Other mental health benefits include improving concentration and patience, while also teaching players the importance of setting long-term goals and working towards them.

2) Flipping chips improves your coordination

Flipping chips – some do it to aid concentration, others do it out of habit. Regardless, rolling chips across your fingers keeps your digits supple and nimble. In addition, while playing poker may not require the same physical demands as running on a treadmill, players are thought to burn around three calories per minute.

That may not sound like a lot, but given poker games often take several hours to complete, players can burn off a surprisingly large number of calories over the course of a game.

3) Poker ensures you have an active social life

Whether playing at a land-based poker room or online, poker is an inherently social game. This not only helps players improve their communication and social skills, but it is a well-known fact that being around other people with a shared interest is good for you. And just because you play online doesn’t mean you can’t interact with other players.

At Replay Poker we have a thriving community where players chat about the game, share tips and tricks on how to improve their skill, or simply shoot the breeze.

4) You’ll enjoy a good night sleep, too

The brain power required to play poker means that come the end of a game or tournament, it is not unusual for players to feel tired. This is not a bad thing, of course – having exerted a lot of mental and physical energy, the body requires a good night sleep to recover. And with a clear mind, an undisturbed night sleep is almost guaranteed.