Chess – health and therapy

chess in medicine and therapy

It is the mind which builds the body.
(Friedrich Schiller, German poet)

The OECD and the EU Commission published a report on health in Europe* in 2018. One in six EU citizens has mental health problems, which represents a huge financial burden on the economy and social systems. The total cost is estimated at over €600 billion.

For many years, the Munich Chess Foundation has been involved in the integration of autistic people, senior citizens, mentally burdened children and socially disadvantaged children, cooperating with schools, hospitals, social associations and charitable institutions.

Chess as a therapy has proven successful in various areas. In 2013 the chess project CHESS4ADHD.COM was developed in Spain to help children and adults suffering from ADHD.

Teachers observed that aggressive children who regularly play chess behaved less aggressively. Chess promotes interpersonal communication and thus integration. In South Africa, it was possible to break the silence at a school by means of chess to speak openly about HIV, sex and prevention. In Bulgaria, the association "Chovekolubie" has been using chess as a therapy for people with various mental disorders for more than 25 years. Chess has also proved to be successful in the treatment of addicted patients.

In order to prevent dementia, it is regularly recommended to take active exercise, eat a healthy diet and keep mentally fit. Chess is an excellent way to keep your mind alert

Scientific studies prove the therapeutic and prophylactic properties of chess. Chess therapy is developing into a new trend and could make the work of social educators and psychotherapists easier. The already existing studies in this field show that chess is an immense enrichment for today's modern society as well.

* Link: Bericht zur Gesundheit in Europa / report on health in Europe / rapport sur la santé en Europe