Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Hum Factors. 2017 Nov;59(7):1096-1107. doi: 10.1177/0018720817715360. Epub 2017 Jun 21.

Searching for Affective and Cognitive Restoration: Examining the Restorative Effects of Casual Video Game Play.

Author information

1
University of Central Florida, Orlando.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

We investigated the effects of a passive break, relaxation activity, and casual video game on affect, stress, engagement, and cognitive performance.

BACKGROUND:

Reducing stress and improving cognitive performance is critical across many domains. Previous studies investigated taking a break, relaxation techniques, or playing a game; however, these methods have not been compared within a single experiment.

METHOD:

Participants completed a baseline affective and cognitive assessment (ACA), which included the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule, shortened version of the Dundee Stress State Questionnaire, and backward digit-span. Next, participants completed a vigilance task, followed by another ACA. Participants were then assigned at random to complete a break or relaxation activity or play a casual video game, followed by a final ACA.

RESULTS:

Participants who played the casual video game exhibited greater engagement and affective restoration than the relaxation condition. The break condition slightly decreased affect and prevented cognitive restoration.

CONCLUSION:

Playing a casual video game even briefly can restore individuals' affective abilities, making it a suitable activity to restore mood in response to stress. However, future research is needed to find activities capable of cognitive restoration.

APPLICATION:

Many activities in life require sustained cognitive demand, which are stressful and decrease performance, especially for workers in performance-critical domains. Our research suggests some leisure activities are better than others for restoring fatigued affective processes.

KEYWORDS:

cognition; fatigue; guided relaxation; mindfulness; stress; vigilance

PMID:
28636838
DOI:
10.1177/0018720817715360
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Atypon
Loading ...
Support Center