Chess is having a moment. The phenomenally popular Netflix series The Queen’s Gambit has thrust chess into the mainstream media for the first time in many years.
New players are taking up chess for the first time and a lot of other people who have not played the game for a long time are giving it another go as well.
A knock-on impact of chess becoming a lot more popular in recent weeks could be that there is also a spike in interest in chess betting in India.
Major tournaments around the world already tend to attract interest from betting lovers but more interest in the game could provide further opportunities to make cash.
But what are some of the major benefits of playing chess? Let’s take a look.
Chess can improve memory
Research has shown that chess can have a big impact on boosting a player’s memory.
As the game is so complex and moves have to be planned ahead in order to have a good chance of winning, this improves brain power and gives people a big mental boost.
Studies have found experienced chess players tend to show higher levels of auditory memory.
Visual patterns can also be recognised more easily by those who play chess regularly, adding to the long list of reasons why people should consider playing the game.
IQ can increase through playing chess
Playing chess can even have an impact on a person’s IQ, which many of those buying new chess sets after being gripped to The Queen’s Gambit are likely to be hoping for. US sales of chess sets are said to be up by 60 per cent since the show’s release.
In the Netflix coming-of-age period drama – which features Split star Anya Taylor-Joy in the lead role of Beth – an orphaned chess prodigy becomes the world’s greatest chess player.
Research in Venezuela found that four months of playing chess had a significant impact on the IQ of students, with thousands having taken part in the research.
Fluid intelligence and the processing speed of the brain have also both been shown to improve as a result of playing the game of chess.
It has even been found that stimulating overall brain growth can be achieved through chess too.
Positive impact on mental health
Many people have been struggling with their mental health in 2020, with the impact of the coronavirus crisis making it a difficult year for everyone.
Chess can give people something to focus on as a distraction, with many reporting how getting engaged in a game can help them to enter the state of mind known as “flow”.
Research from the Yeshiva University by The Albert Einstein School of Medicine has even found that playing chess can even lower the risk of people developing dementia later in life.
More mental exercise has also been found to lead to less risk of suffering from Alzheimer’s.
Some studies have even found that chess can help those who have suffered a stroke recover, as well as boosting fine motor skills among people who have a disability.
Chess can even make therapy more effective, it has been revealed by previous research.
Chess can improve problem-solving, reading and math
Children who play chess have been shown to outperform their peers in a wide range of areas.
These include problem-solving, reading and math, demonstrating just how wide the range of benefits are from taking up chess at a young age.
Chess also sparks more creativity in those who play it younger in life, according to studies that have been conducted in India.
It has also been revealed that children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder can reduce inattentiveness and over-activity by playing chess.
Experts also believe chess improves thinking skills in children, as well as helping to improve their concentration. And of course, children can play chess against people of any age.
With chess having such a long history in India, it is sure to remain very popular in the country.
But there is no doubt the release of The Queen’s Gambit has brought the game to the attention of a new audience, which has to be a good thing.