How Hobbies Help Our Daily Development

Hobbies, Daily Development,

Hobbies shouldn’t be underestimated. Scientists have more and more evidence that hobbies have a beneficial effect on many aspects of life.

Here’s one of them. A group of American scientists tracked a variety of health indicators and levels of psychological well-being in 1,399 people of different ages. They found that those participants who had hobbies had lower levels of blood pressure and the stress hormone cortisol, and their sleep quality was better. The hobbyists were also less likely to be depressed, had more friends, and generally considered their lives happier.


Of course, the correlation could be reversed: people with better physical and mental health are more likely to have hobbies. But the researchers’ findings are supported by other scientific work. Apparently, the opportunity to distract from the problems, a noticeable improvement in their own skills and communication helps to counteract the daily stress.


A variety of hobbies, be it 22Bet football betting in Nigeria or watching surreal movies, can be beneficial, but here are a few popular hobbies whose beneficial effects have been confirmed by studies.

Dancing to Improve Memory

Dancing can improve a person’s cognitive abilities. At least, that’s the conclusion reached by researchers from the U.S. National Institutes of Health. They conducted a six-month experiment involving 247 elderly people. They were divided into several groups. Some did regular exercises for flexibility, strength and balance, some walked a lot, and some took dance lessons.


Before and after the experiment, the participants were tested by giving them tasks on memorization, logic and reaction speed. Scientists also monitored changes in the participants’ brains.


It turned out that reaction speed and episodic memory improved in those who danced and walked. Brain scans showed: these participants had improved white matter brain plasticity. And it’s responsible for communication between the parts of the central nervous system. Apparently, aerobic activity has such a beneficial effect on the brain.


Other studies suggest that dancing helps delay age-related cognitive decline. Scientists from the U.S. for 21 years tracked the fate of 469 older people with different lifestyles. They found that having a hobby often reduced the risk of developing dementia, but those who danced were less likely to experience the disease.


Schoolchildren can also benefit from dancing: It makes them more empathic and teaches them teamwork.


Finally, dancing can alleviate symptoms of depression. Researchers from Finland invited people suffering from clinical depression to participate in an experiment. They had to practice dancing once every two weeks for ten months. As a result, the participants became more confident, began to feel less anxious and more satisfied with life.

Music for Stress Resistance

An analysis of 47 studies involving a total of nearly three thousand people found that patients who listened to music reduced their stress symptoms.


In one study, scientists analyzed how classical music, music for relaxation and the music preferred by participants influenced their condition. Cortisol levels, heart rate and blood pressure went down in all patients, and moods went up. Relaxing music with a quiet rhythm had the best effect on people. Slightly less effective were the songs chosen by the patients, and classical music was only in third place.


The effect of music is especially noticeable when a person does not just listen to it, but performs it independently. In 2018, scientists from the United States selected 65 combat veterans who had been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. It occurs after severe emotional trauma: a person may be haunted by intrusive memories, have frequent nightmares, and may have difficulty controlling their emotions.


All participants reported depression, memory problems and difficulties with everyday life. For a month and a half, they were taught to play the guitar: once a week each had lessons with a teacher. Several group lessons were also provided. When the experiment was over, scientists interviewed the participants again. They found out that signs of stress in guitar players decreased by 22% and depression – by 28%. Besides, participants in the experiment improved their cognitive abilities by 13%: they were less likely to report forgetting appointments or having difficulty expressing their thoughts.

Drawing for Brain Pleasure

Drawing often helps improve the mood of children, but it’s also good for adults. For example, the process can reduce symptoms of anxiety. And drawing helps regardless of skill level.


Scientists analyzed eight studies with a total of 578 respondents. Half of them during the experiments drew what they wanted, and the other half painted mandalas – circles with patterns. It turned out that both activities almost equally reduce anxiety. So, if you don’t want to draw, color pictures.


Similar conclusions were reached by researchers from the United Kingdom. Experiment participants were offered 45 minutes to do any type of visual art of their choice: for example, draw or make collages from various materials. Before the experiment, their salivary cortisol levels were measured, and after the people had finished their work, the measurements were repeated. It turned out that 75% of the participants had lower levels of cortisol, and they said that the creative process gave them pleasure.


The fact is that during the drawing and coloring of pictures is the flow of blood to the prefrontal cortex. In essence, the brain’s reward system is activated – and a person experiences pleasant emotions.

Watching Fish to Feel Less Pain

Several studies have shown that simply contemplating aquarium fish can improve a person’s psychological well-being.


Here’s how it was tested in France. The 69 volunteers were first asked to look at the fish in a 1000-litre aquarium and then the participants were given a mild electric shock. Before the experience, everyone’s pain threshold was measured: the subjects clamped electrodes in their hand, which were fed with ever-increasing impulses. As soon as the pulses became sensitive, the person asked for the current to be stopped. It turned out that already after five minutes of contemplating the fish, the pain threshold increased.


And the more fish, the better. In another study, scientists asked 112 people to observe an aquarium – at first it was empty, the next stage a small number of fish were started there, and at the end – more were added. As expected, people felt much more relaxed watching an aquarium with more fish. Their heart rate and blood pressure also dropped significantly.


So, installing aquariums in hospitals can help patients. For example, scientists in Indiana watched 62 people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease for two months. Two huge aquariums were installed in their hospital. Eight large, brightly colored fish were placed in each one. In two months of observation, they found that nearly 90 percent of the patients had improved appetite. And weight loss is a common symptom in this diagnosis. Their blood pressure also dropped.