Back to Resources

3 Cognitive Puzzles for Seniors You Can Do Online for Free

If you want to stay in tip-top shape, you need to keep your body active.

If you want to stay in tip-top shape, you need to keep your body active. The brain is no exception to this, requiring frequent use to maintain peak cognitive function. For seniors, exercising the gray matter can help prevent conditions like Alzheimer’s or dementia from developing. While some people may end up needing more dedicated care as they get older, even small critical thinking challenges can go a long way toward maintaining a person’s cognitive acuity.

An easy way to get in some mental reps is to check out some cognitive puzzles for seniors. There are plenty available for free online, some of which you might even be already familiar with.

1. Sudoku

Sudoku is a classic logic puzzle that’s popular all over the world. To solve it, you have to fill out a nine-by-nine grid so that each column, row, and block (the three-by-three subgrids) contains the digits 1 through 9 only once. The person creating the puzzle partially fills in the grid with digits, and the puzzle solver works from those digits to determine how the rest of the grid must be arranged.

As cognitive puzzles for seniors, they’re a great opportunity to apply critical thinking and logical reasoning. Sudoku puzzles require a lot of strategic thinking and pattern recognition, both skills that are important to maintain as we get older. There are plenty available online for free at Web Sudoku.

2. Chess

There’s a reason chess has existed for over five hundred years. As one of the oldest, most popular, and most complex games in the world, it’s an excellent test of a person’s strategy and creativity. While you can get deep in the weeds memorizing different openings, game theories, or playstyles, even just playing casually has been linked to maintaining brain function into advanced age. is a great site for anyone looking to play, allowing the user to set the difficulty of the computer to keep the game enjoyable. If you’d like to try your skills against another person, the site also allows you to challenge someone at your level. Chess isn’t just a cognitive game for seniors, but a social one as well.

3. Crossword Puzzles

Crossword puzzles have been around since the nineteenth century, and their popularity shows no signs of slowing down. In addition to tickling the minds of people worldwide, they also serve as excellent cognitive puzzles for seniors. Solving a crossword puzzle requires the careful application of knowledge, logic, and problem-solving. By working through a crossword, a person can keep their recall and verbal skills sharp. If the one in the newspaper isn’t enough for you, there are plenty available at and

When you use your mind each day, you can keep it sharp for years to come. At Solterra, we are dedicated to helping people as they enter advanced age, and we’ve seen the difference cognitive puzzles for seniors can make. So don’t wait; get out there and stretch your gray matter. You’ll be happy you did.