Science has long spoken of chess as a therapy for cognitive impairment. The ‘Gymchess’ (because the players are in a gymnasium of the mind) is an application launched by Asier Rufino and Leontxo García, co-founder and CEO of Tecnalia Ventures and journalist specialized in chess respectively, together with the Extremaduran psychologist Juan Antonio Montero and with the support of the Basque Government and the Provincial Council of Gipuzkoa.
Using this technique to fight diseases such as dementia has been in practice for a decade in several workshops in Extremadura. Can we digitize this? That was the question posed by the three founders of ‘Gymchess’ and which gave rise to this application that already has around a thousand downloads.
It is not necessary to know how to play chess to use the app although it is based on its board and figures. It has more than 2,500 exercises.
The co-founders are working to expand its use to social centres and residences, via tablet.