The benefits of joining a book club for seniors

Reading a good book is a great way to improve your cognition and keep sharp in your later years. It can take you on a journey through the life of a fictional or real person and help you gain insight into human behaviour. These benefits are what make reading the perfect activity to enjoy with a group of peers at your retirement or assisted living community. Many retirement residences offer book clubs as part of their social programming in an effort to positively impact residents’ mental and emotional health. Consider participating in a group setting to reap some of the following benefits.

1. Stay sharp
Research shows that reading improves brain function. A study conducted by Emory University shows that reading leaves lasting benefits on the mind. Not only are you more intellectually engaged while you’re participating in the activity, but the effects remain with you long after. It’s especially helpful for seniors who want to stay up-to-date with what’s going on in society.

“[My] book club keeps me in touch with the world,” avid reader Sheila Malloch told Canadian Living. “It’s easy to get so busy in our own lives that our personal learning stagnates. The club makes sure I am aware of current books and authors. By reading about life in different cultures and societies, my understanding of the world has been enormously enhanced. I am then forced to view myself and my lifestyle with new eyes.”

2. Make new friends
What better way to get to know the neighbors at your senior living residence than by sharing your ideas with one another every week? A book club allows you to discuss your opinions on a book in a relaxed setting that’s free of judgment. There are no wrong ideas, and this gives participants a sense of freedom and creativity – the perfect foundation for forming friendships at a new residence.

3. Find a new hobby
Even if reading was never a part of your everyday life before, you can quickly learn to appreciate the advantages of enjoying a good story and discussing it with enthusiastic friends. It’s never too late to find a new source of entertainment. Surrounding yourself with like-minded people who are open to new experiences is a great way to relax and enjoy your retirement years.

Chartwell residents who enjoy reading are encouraged to join book clubs that are offered in their communities. If you’re interested in learning more about the activities and programs Chartwell offers, download a sample activity calendar here.