Shuffle the Deck: Card Games That Keep Your Mind, Body and Soul Young

There is a lot of literature and concern regarding keeping the body fit and looking young.  However, it’s extremely important to do the same for the mind, which affects the body and keeps the soul young too.  A range of games and activities help keep the brain fit: chess, card games, crossword puzzles, etc.  However, crosswords are usually done alone and only two people can play chess.  However, card games allow for a larger number of players.


Uno requires a bit of luck and strategy.  The first player to accumulate 500 points is the winner.  Players are dealt cards and then attempt to discard them.  Cards consist of numbers and colors along with special cards such as a wildcard and a reverse card.  It requires a bit of strategy; for example, if a player has a ‘Draw Four’ card, they may want to hold onto it until they observe another player about to go out of the game.  Or, you may want to throw down a ‘Skip’ card so the person after you does not get a turn.



Blackjack is a widely popular game and simple enough to quickly teach another person the basics.  The goal is to get a combination of cards to equal 21 (or as close as possible) in order to beat the dealer or other players.  It can be played with one or more traditional decks of cards.  In a casino setting, special circumstances come into play, such as doubling down on a bet or splitting the cards you have into two hands.

Gin Rummy

The objective of this game is to score points and reach a particular number of points before an opponent.  A player wants to form ‘melds’ while discarding ‘deadwood.’  Melds are sets of 3 or 4 cards of the same suit.  Deadwood cards do not fit into a present meld.  Different versions of the game, such as Hollywood Gin, can be played.  In Hollywood Gin, a second set of cards determines the ‘knock’ value of a hand.  The knock card is dealt from the bottom and turned over on the top.


Players try to get rid of high cards without winning points.  It’s good to play the highest card without winning a trick.    The game is played with 4 players, although some games call for 3 or 6.  Along with Bridge and Spades, Hearts is a trick-taking game.  In addition to avoiding tricks, players try to avoid winning particular penalty cards.  When a passing player is trying to get rid of cards, they also try to create voids.  Hearts is among the most beloved of family card games because it is competitive and requires a number of players.


Memory can be played with a normal card deck or a special deck that features pictures rather than numbers and suits.  Basically, all of the playing cards are turned down, and players get to pick two cards at a time.  If the two chosen cards are a match, then the player gets to keep the set and the cards are taken out.  However, if two different cards are chosen, then they are both turned back over.  As the game progresses, those with great memory (who can remember where different cards are positioned), will do better at accumulating sets to eventually win.

Luca Quinn is a Mom of 3 who saves money on every purchase she can. She loves the thrill of saving money which she can then spend to treat the kids. Read her frugal, money saving articles to find out how.

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