Young man around 30 years old with headphones on playing a video game with a steering wheel controller. Big boys toys. Play for Adults.

Play for Adults

Do you remember the last time you got together with friends just to play a board game? Maybe you’re really cool and it’s in your weekly schedule (if so, can we be friends?!) or, most likely, you can’t recall the last time you played a game or make-believe without the purpose of entertaining a child. Sadly, toys and games being just for children is one of the biggest stereotypes in the toy industry, because you’ll never believe the great impacts it can have on adults! summarises the benefits of adult-specific play with toys or games in their post The Benefits of Play for Adults, writing: “While play is crucial for a child's development, it is also beneficial for people of all ages. Play can add joy to life, relieve stress, supercharge learning, and connect you to others and the world around you. Play can also make work more productive and pleasurable.” So perhaps consider spending some intentional time connecting with yourself or others through play, because it may be more productive than you think! If you decide to plan a game night with friends, we highly recommend trying out the card game What do you meme? for endless laughs, or keep it classic with a staple from everyone’s childhood, Jenga. You could even connect further with your friends or family by reminiscing on some of your favourite childhood memories, or by putting your own spin on the game like stacking the blocks differently. 

Jenga and What Do You Meme card game products with boxes on white background.

Another stereotype surrounding adult play, however, is that it’s irresponsible, and only cliché immature ‘big boys’ play with toys. While we can only speak in general terms, these men might actually be onto something, with passions such as collecting diecast collectibles opening them up to a whole new community with similar interests, which increases their sense of connection and strengthens their overall wellbeing. Don’t let the term ‘big boys’ mislead you, however, as anyone can play with these toys and be part of these communities. In fact, even the Big Boys Expo is a recommended family event, regardless of what the name implies. 

Diecast collectibles title with flames. Race car photos and race car toy products.

Other than fostering connection and community, adult play has also proven to:

  • Relieve stress.

Endorphins can be triggered by play, releasing a natural feeling of happiness within individuals. This can open you up to be more receptive to those around you and learn things faster as you’re more relaxed and better able to regulate your emotions in a healthy way.

  • Improve brain function. 

Increased critical thinking done in an enjoyable way improves general brain function, making it work more efficiently. Social connection through play can also decrease the risk of stress and mental health illnesses like depression, which can physically impair brain function, because you feel more connected to loved ones and develop communication and trust. 

  • Keep you(r brain) young.

Challenging your brain regularly in simple targeted exercises like memory games helps prevent memory loss, improving your day-to-day and long-term actions.

So the next time you’re at a toy store, or planning a day for yourself with loved ones, consider playing with a toy or game, or tapping back into your imagination. We promise the benefits are beyond worth it!

Adult friends playing Jenga game together. Smiling and happy.

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