Whether you are looking for a way to connect with family members during visits, strengthen cognitive skills alone, or just have a little bit of fun, card games can be the ideal solution. We love that card games for seniors can be played alone or in groups, and that most games are suitable for beginners or experts. Even better, most card games can be played with a single deck of playing cards, which are inexpensive and easy to carry almost anywhere.
Ready to try your hand at being a card shark yourself? Here are a few of our favorite card games for seniors that you can try as you find your favorites.
A much better way to spend your time than scrolling social media for hours on end, solitaire is a game of cognitive exercise that any older adult with a deck of cards can play. We love playing the traditional way, but there are plenty of fun ways to spice up your solitaire time too.
If you have enough neighbors or family members to make a table of four, try your hands at euchre. This team game is played with about half a deck of cards and has been known to make a family gathering quite competitive. It takes a few games to get the hang of it, but when you are familiar with the rules, you can perfect your strategy.
We love rummy because it is easy to teach to beginners, including the grandkids, and when you play to 500, you have plenty of time for meaningful conversation. Rummy is an excellent addition to family gatherings, or you can play a longer-running game with your spouse or best friend. We love it when we hear of partners playing a game that has lasted years, keeping points in a small notebook that travels with their playing card deck.
If you are looking for a game that is fast-paced enough to hold the attention of visiting grandkids, look no further than spoons. This game is easy to learn and can get quite rowdy, which makes it an extra-special game to break out during special visits.
No matter what your preferred game of poker is, there is nothing quite like a poker-inspired gathering. Experiment with new games together and don’t forget to bring along the poker chips.
Looking for a cognitive challenge that is easily adapted for anyone’s skill level? Combine two decks of cards and create a memory game. Flip over cards one at a time until you begin to match pairs. Start with 10 pairs of cards and then work your way up to challenge yourself.
Shuffling and Sorting
For seniors living with Alzheimer’s disease or another type of dementia, favorite card games of the past can become too complex and frustrating. However, you can still tap into their love of cards by using a deck to create a meaningful way for them to practice fine motor skills and even decrease stress. Simply hand them a deck of cards and ask them to shuffle for you. You can also encourage them to sort cards by color or suit, paring down the deck as needed.
There’s so much you can do with a deck of playing cards, and it’s a great on-the-go activity to add to your purse or car glove compartment!
Learn more about how to stay active during your retirement by downloading our free resource, “The Busy Person’s Guide to Recreation in Retirement.” We’ve compiled ideas and tips from our senior living experts that will inspire you to try something new or brush up on a favorite past hobby.