Top Board Game Recommendations for Occupational Therapists

Board games are not just for kids. Sure, many of us were introduced to games like Monopoly and Scrabble in our childhoods, but there’s a much bigger world out there. With modern board games, you can transport yourself into interesting situations:

  • scavenging for food and medical supplies during the zombie apocalypse
  • searching for treasure in medieval Arabia
  • racing across America by train
  • helping a dying man to confront his regrets, all the while while balancing his medical needs and your team’s stress levels
  • building and upgrading an army of unicorns

Games range in weight, complexity, length, mechanics, and theme. This variety makes modern board games an excellent tool for occupational therapists. With a bit of thought, you will be able to select the right game to meet the needs of the groups and individuals you work with. There is something out there for everyone.

Since my presentation at the OT Show this year, I’ve been blown away by the response. Occupational therapists and students in a range of settings (including secure hospitals, prisons, eating disorders inpatient units, child and adolescent units, and older adult services) have asked for game recommendations, or shared their own passion for board games.

I’m keen to collaborate with others who are interested in the therapeutic use of modern board games. Let’s combine forces and pull together a resource that we can all benefit from! Mark (@markstudentOT) suggested a series of blog posts introducing different games. I love that idea! So, get in touch or comment below if you’d be up for:

  • Writing a guest post* about a game you’ve tried, and why you would recommend it (or not) in clinical settings, or
  • Filming or collaborating on a tutorial video

*Here’s some guidance about the sort of information I’m looking for in a post.

Let’s combine forces and pull together a resource that we can all benefit from!

Games List

The games below are ordered by BoardGameGeek complexity rating (low to high). Watch this space – it will be updated as game recommendations and blog posts build up.

  • Timeline: Music and Cinema
  • Brainbox
  • Sushi Go!
  • Tsuro
  • Kokoro
  • Ticket to Ride
  • Carcassonne
  • Tales of the Arabian Nights
  • Catan
  • Dominion
  • Betrayal at House on the Hill
  • Pandemic

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