Our brains, just like our bodies need exercise! Neurobics is a type of exercise designed to stimulate the brain and enhance cognitive performance. Here are 13 simple and stimulating mind activities for seniors in nursing homes.
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Our brains, just like our bodies need exercise!

‘Neurobics' is a type of exercise designed to stimulate the brain and enhance cognitive performance. Research indicates that people who pursue intellectual challenges live longer and maintain a sharper mind.

Intellectual activities can include reading, solving riddles and puzzles, playing chess, debating and learning a new language.

So, don't let routine take over the lives of your clients! Offer activities that require some conscious effort to stimulate cell growth.

Here are some ideas to be incorporated into your Activities Program.


1. Grow a Garden

Start a herb garden with clients; if a garden is not available you can use pots.


2. Surf the Internet

Assist clients to find a subject of interest and Google it.


3. Learn to Juggle

Find someone to teach clients how to juggle.


4. Provide Niche Magazines

Offer niche magazines; They may get clients out of their usual thinking patterns. Choose a subject they know nothing about e.g. Furniture, Fishing, Motor-Homes, Boats, Poultry. Encourage them to read and learn new things.


5. Learn Sign Language

Invite a sign language teacher to visit and teach clients 40 or 50 words.


6. Write with your 'wrong' hand

Have a group of clients write their names with their left hand (or vice-versa if left-handed). There will be a lot of laughter and laughter is a neurobic exercise.


7. Use Chopsticks

Challenge clients to eat with chopsticks (not rice! You could try chopped fruit).


8. Listen to Audio-books

Audiobooks engage the imagination in a different way. Borrow audiobooks from your local library.


9. Engage in Meaningful Activities

Try to increase the number of purposeful activities your clients engage in; crafts, creative arts, drawing, meditation, reading aloud.


10. Foster Friendships

Encourage the need to help each other to generate goodwill.


11. Study Interesting Words

Have a group of clients choose 10 words and look up their etymology - meaning their linguistic origins.


12. Enjoy World Music

Offer music from other countries such as Folk and Gypsy music, and other beats, rhythms and drums.


13. Draw a Map

Challenge a group of clients to make a map of the facility they live in.


The most important thing about Neurobics is that it should be a fun time, to be enjoyed by all.

We'd love to hear your feedback!
Please let us know what has worked for you in the comments below.

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Sharon 28th May 2020 Activities Director
Yesterday we sat on the porch and did Golden Carers Activities. We learned we laughed we watched the chipmunks run by. Thank you
Susan 29th May 2020 Activity Director
What a lovely photo Sharon
Thanks for sharing it
Solange 29th May 2020 Diversional Therapist
Thank you, Sharon. They look happy and relaxed; we appreciate the photo-sharing.
Helena 16th Aug 2019 Retired
I work part time on a voluntary basis in a wonderful Day Centre for the elderly. I find Golden Carers is a fantastic resource for new ideas & activities. I particularly liked the article on Neurobics & the related activities, i’m so looking forward to trying them out!
Many thanks. Helena
Talita 19th Aug 2019
Thank you so much for your feedback Helena, we appreciate it so much!
Nita 29th Nov 2016 Lifestyle officer
Great ideas...definitely going to incorporate neurobics from brand new year 2017. Merry Christmas and happy new year to Golden carers and all members around the world.
Talita 5th Dec 2016
Thank you Nita, a very Merry Christmas to you too!
Shelley 28th Nov 2016 Music therapist
Elevate the idea of the herb garden make a pizza garden, planting basil and oregano, and use them to enhance a homemade pizza sauce. If a small container garden is possible, the tomatoes and peppers can also be used.
Talita 5th Dec 2016
Love this idea Shelley, thanks for your input!
Liz 25th Nov 2016 Personal Assistant
Golden Carers, amazing!!! Not only providing brilliant activities for the elderly, but also stretching the brains of the carers themselves! Brilliant!
Talita 28th Nov 2016
Thank you so much Liz! Your feedback is very much appreciated!
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