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Trend: Playing table tennis to enhance brain fitness and mental health


Businessman turned love of pingpong into charity (Virginia Beach Beacon):

“The elder Lees, now 76, still plays and heads up a table tennis club on the Eastern Shore…Ken Lees said it was local neurologist Dr. Scott Sautter who helped him realize the therapeutic benefits of pingpong on brain fitness and mental health…

“It’s like aerobic chess,” he said. In addition to helping eye-hand coordination, and the use of reflexes, balance, planning and strategy, Lees pointed out the game’s a stress reliever, too.

Lees founded the nonprofit Table Tennis Charity Foundation in 2012 to create awareness about the game’s benefits, plus raise money for organizations that benefit people with Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, depression, and mild to moderate intellectual challenges. More than $250,000 has been raised to date…programs have been implemented at Atlantic Shores retirement community and Westminster Canterbury, as well as Lynnhaven Middle School and Ocean Lakes High School.

Pingpong is “a great exercise for the mind and body,” Lees said. The goal, he said, is to “cross-train your brain.”

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