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Pros and Cons of Allowing Your Children to Play Pokemon GO

Pros and Cons of Allowing Your Children to Play Pokemon GO

You’ve probably heard of the new global phenomenon known as Pokémon GO. Anyone who was a kid during the 80s and 90s is well acquainted with the fluffy pocket monsters that were created in Japan, and today they have taken over our planet once again.

Immediately after Pokémon GO appeared on Google Play and the App Store, its downloads started to break all world records, and developers from Niantic witnessed an amazing spike in their share value. Since it became the most-downloaded application ever, it was almost impossible not to know about this game.

If you are a parent, then you might have noticed how your child wants to go outside far more frequently, or that your kid wants a new smartphone if the old one is not compatible with this game. So, the question is whether Pokémon GO is a good game or a bad game for your kid. In the following article, I’ll discuss its pros and cons.

PRO: Your children will have more physical activity

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    Pokemon GO is certainly different than other video games, since instead of sitting it requires you to walk in order to progress, or level up. Sure, there is a way to catch pokemon while sitting at home, since one will spawn at your place of residence on an hourly basis, however these are only common pokemon.

    The point of the game is to catch them all, and the most efficient way to get new pokemon is to hatch the eggs that players obtain by visiting pokestops. There are three different types of eggs: those that hatch after walking 2 kilometers, those that hatch after 5 kilometers, and those that hatch after 10 kilometers.

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    So, if your child wants to get new pokemon, he or she will need to walk at least 2 kilometers per day, plus in order to get new eggs a child needs to pay a visit to a pokestop somewhere in town. In other words, the game itself really incentivizes physical activity, since the best way to advance is just to keep moving.

    Also, if you are a passenger in a car or a bus, the game notices how fast you are moving, and the distance you make is made null and void. To make it simple, if you are worried that your child is not getting enough activity because he or she spends too much time at home playing video games, then Pokemon GO is definitely a game that you should allow.

    PRO: Your children will socialize more with their peers

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      People tend to go together when they are hunting for new pokemon because it’s much more fun and more efficient, so the game also incentivizes team spirit. Teamwork is promoted via in-built game features and mechanics.

      First, there is an item called a lure module that is used on a pokestop to attract more nearby pokemon. To be more precise, the item increases the spawn rate of pokemon near the pokestop it is used on, and all players who are around can benefit from this feature — not just the user. So, for the sake of making full use of the item, people tend to go in groups and use the module either on two or more stops that are in close proximity of one another, or to use more modules on the same one after one expires.

      Second, there are three different teams: Team Instinct, Team Mystic, and Team Valor. Once you reach level 5, you get to choose which team you want to be affiliated with. There are locations known as gyms and you get to take over the gym in the name of your team. If someone from an opposing team is in possession of the gym, you can take it down and claim it in the name of your team. However, there is a thing called gym prestige, and it grows if you fight a gym that already belongs to your team.

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      By increasing the gym prestige, you open up additional slots for players of the same team to leave their pokemon, thereby increasing the defenses of the particular gym. So, people of the same team go together to take down the opposing teams and claim gyms, and then they fight there in order to increase gym prestige and bolster its defenses.

      This is how team spirit is promoted in Pokemon GO, so you can be certain that your child’s social life won’t suffer. In fact, your kids might even meet new friends.

      PRO: Your children can earn money

      Pokemon GO is not only played by kids, a lot of nostalgic adults also enjoy playing the game and chasing after new creatures. However, people have jobs, and in order to unlock all of the in-game features, you need to reach level 20, which can take a long time if you do not play the game frequently.

      There are numerous ways to earn experience and level up, but in order to be truly efficient and use all the items to their full potential, you need to walk and play the game. This is time-consuming, and time is a commodity many employed people cannot afford.

      However, many people create new emails for the purpose of playing the game, and they will gladly share that email and pay someone to level it up so that they can enjoy the game to its fullest. This is a wonderful opportunity for your kid to earn some cash by leveling up someone else’s account. If you are unemployed and love to play the game, you can do the same thing.

      Here is a guide on how to become an expert and how to distribute in-game resources more efficiently. Moreover, the child can learn some amazing new skills, since improving resource management can make you a better player. Again, the opportunity to earn cash is open for everyone, so make sure you go through an online guide if you haven’t played the game so far, and you’ll know everything there is to know.

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      PRO: It is a bridge between different generations

      As mentioned above, the Pokemon trend has been around for a long time, and now its community consists of both millennials and those of generation Z. These people are active members, they make YouTube videos, exchange experiences, and keep an entire community together.

      It’s really nice to see one app do all these things and you should encourage your child to participate as well. It may inspire your kid to become a vlogger or a blogger one day, which are hobbies that can be quite lucrative and will be quite useful in years to come.

      PRO: It can help your child develop an adventurous spirit

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        The last positive trait that will be covered is inspiring an adventurous spirit. Like we said, the main objective is to catch all of the pokemon and complete the pokedex. However, out of 136 obtainable Pokémon, only around 60 of them are easy to find, and as far as the others are concerned, your child will have to visit all sorts of places in order to find them. There are even those that are region-exclusive, meaning some are only available in Europe, others in America and Japan, etc.

        So, the developers clearly want you to move around, visit river banks, and even other continents. If exploration is rewarded in this way from a very young age, a child can become an individual with a more open mind and a desire to experience other cultures — which is truly a positive thing.

        CON: Your kid can get lost

        Let’s address some of the potential dangers that you might face as a parent. First of all, while the app is on and connected to the internet, the whole map is displayed on your phone, and anyone can easily find a way back by following the pokestops, so that’s really helpful. However, there is a downside to this. Pokemon GO depletes your phone battery really fast, so after playing a game for an hour or two, your phone may shut down, and if you are in an unknown part of town, it can be difficult to get back.

        So, either ensure that your child always has a spare battery, or simply tag along and make sure he or she doesn’t get lost. You can also tell your child that they need to be close to you when they play the game. You can also download an app to track the phone, so that you always know the location of your kids. Also, if there is a big generation gap between your kids, the older ones can supervise the younger — chances are they both play the game.

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        CON: They will need supervision

        In addition to getting lost, there are also other dangers your kid might be exposed to. For example, some people have already managed to take advantage of the lure module feature. They set up a module on a secluded pokestop and wait for an innocent victim to approach it, then they simply mug those people, since they are certainly carrying a phone with them. It would be wise not to allow your kids to go out and play the game at night.

        Also, if your child uses your email account to play the game, it can be troublesome for you to allow too much freedom. There is an in-game shop that uses real money to purchase certain items, and if your credit card information is linked to your email, there is a chance your child can access it and buy in-game currency. So, make sure you check these things before you allow your kid to play the game.

        Lastly, there have been a couple of incidents in streets because some kids do not pay attention to where they are going. If they are too busy looking at the screen, they can easily get hurt. So, if your child is too young and doesn’t pay attention, it’s always better to go along and supervise.

        Conclusion

        All things considered, Pokemon GO is a really original and creative app that has managed to impress a lot of people. There are numerous benefits for everyone who knows how to actively participate in the hype, and if you are a parent, this is a great opportunity to bond with your kid. So, measure these pros and cons and decide if Pokemon GO is something you want your children to have on their phones.

        Featured photo credit: https://pixabay.com/en/users/geralt-9301/ via pixabay.com

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        Djordje Todorovic

        Blogger, Gamer Extraordinaire

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        Published on November 21, 2019

        7 Ways to Motivate Yourself to Workout

        7 Ways to Motivate Yourself to Workout

        Maybe you like going on walks in your neighborhood or hiking in the park, taking in the sights and sounds of nature. Or, perhaps you like to push yourself with spin classes and work up a real sweat. It could be that basketball at a local recreation league is your thing. And even though you enjoy these activities and you like the way you feel when you are doing them, somehow lately, you haven’t been able to muster up the energy to participate.

        There’s a “catch-22” that often happens when you’re wanting to work out, but you are not in the mood. Working out will boost your mood[1] and make you feel better, but because of your current mood, you don’t want to work out. Does this conundrum sound familiar?

        Anyone can get stuck in this rut from time to time. It could be that work has been taking too much out of you, or your family and personal commitments are eating up a lot of your time and energy. You’ve got to find a way to break out of this cycle. Getting your groove back requires finding a way to getting back to working out; you need a way to get started again.

        How can you get started? Use one of the following hacks to get you back on track. Find one or two of the ideas on this list that speak to you and that you think you can easily implement. Once you get your workout mojo back, you’ll be surprised at not only how much better you can feel in a short amount of time, but how much better everything will seem.

        Here are 7 ways to motivate yourself to work out:

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        1. Don’t Get Sucked into the Black Hole of the Couch

        As soon as you come in the door from work, get your workout clothes on and hit the door. If you sit down on the comfy sofa, it will take more fortitude to get yourself going. Think of your sofa as quicksand and don’t get pulled into the trap.

        It’s a simple law of physics — Newton’s first law:[2] an object at rest tends to stay at rest; an object in motion tends to stay in motion. You can come nestle into the comfy couch after your workout. But first, while you’re in motion from your day, stay in motion and your get your workout in.

        2. Find an Accountability Partner

        Studies show that having an accountability partner greatly increases your exercise frequency and success.[3] Talk to some of your friends and find someone who is interested in your same schedule. Maybe you have a friend who would love to hike early morning before work, or maybe you know someone that would like to hit a dance class right after work ends. Knowing that you have to meet someone else will make you think twice about blowing off your workout.

        You don’t have to have all your workouts include your partner, but even if you meet this person once a week, that will give you a boost to want to keep your workout going on other days. If you really feel that you need an accountability partner all the time, then find 2-3 people and meet them 2-3 times a week.

        One caveat: if your accountability partner cancels on you, be prepared for that and keep to your schedule. Everyone has things come up every now and then, but if you find your partner is frequently trying to cancel or reschedule, you probably need to find a new partner.

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        3. Or, Make Yourself an Accountability Partner

        Commit to 30 days of an exercise plan. Look at your calendar and plan out which days and times you are going to work out, including what that workout will be. Allow yourself two “do-overs” for random life events or illness, but only two.

        For example, let’s say you have on your calendar that you are going to go to a spin class after work on a Tuesday, but a family member calls whose car broke down and you have to go assist. You will rearrange that date of your spin class and find a different date to put it on the calendar, but you only want to do that for necessary external life events. Hitting the snooze button because you woke up too tired isn’t a good excuse.

        If you can stick to 30 days of this plan, it should feel more like a habit and be simpler going forward as you reap the benefits of feeling better, mood boost, and more energy.

        4. Integrate Some Mini-Movement into Your Day

        If you go into work and sit at a desk most of the day, it will feel good to get out and move your muscles afterwards. But sometimes it seems difficult to get out of that sedentary rut. One solution is staying in touch with your body all throughout the day.

        Set a few timers on your phone during the day, and when they go off, take a few minutes to do different physical movements. Stretching, doing forward bends or side bends are some ideas. You can stand against the wall and “peel” off of it, feeling each vertebra and releasing your lower back.Take off your shoes and wiggle your toes around. Do calf raises, standing up and lifting your heels up and down.

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        These small movements done 2-3 times throughout your workday may seem insignificant, but they will keep your attuned to your physical self a bit more, so that you will be more motivated to have some bigger, longer, “real” workout sessions. Think of them as appetizers and your workout is the big meal.

        5. Eat Something Fresh

        Speaking of big meal, what we eat and drink is related to how we feel. So if you’re not eating particularly well these days, commit to at least eating one fresh item daily. Maybe you have an apple as an afternoon snack. Perhaps you fix a nice salad to go along with your dinner.

        Sometimes, we’re so busy on the run that we don’t realize we’ve not been eating as fresh as we’d like. By making the conscious choice to seek out some fresh food, you’re taking care of yourself which in turn will make you think about those same kinds of choices when it comes to exercise. Another benefit is that if you’re eating well, you may feel “lighter” and have more energy to work out.

        6. Create an Alter Ego

        It may sound kind of crazy at first, but employing the use of an alter ego can be a great way to break out of a habit or create some life changes you desire. In his book The Alter Ego Effect, Todd Herman illustrates how an Alter Ego is a mental trick to improve your life. Many famous entertainers have used alter egos to overcome stage fright.

        How could this work for you? You may be too tired to work out at the end of the day, but your alter ego isn’t. Let’s say you create a character named “Ironman.” Sure, when you come in from a long day at work, you can talk yourself into wanting to relax on the couch. But Ironman doesn’t feel that way — he’s ready to throw on his sneakers and go for a run!

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        7. Water, Water Everywhere

        Sometimes the simplest rules are the most important. We all know we are supposed to be hydrated throughout the day. But if you’re busy all day at work, and you’ve nursed a big tumbler of coffee all morning, suddenly it might be early afternoon and you realize you haven’t had any water today.

        Drinking water boosts mood and decreases fatigue.[4] These two factors will help you in your quest to find the motivation for your workout.

        Make sure you’re getting your water intake all throughout the day, and if you’ve had coffee, drink some extra water to counteract the dehydrating effect of it.

        Final Thoughts

        So, how are you planning to get going this week? Go pour yourself a big glass of water, get out your calendar, and think about what types of workouts you want to do.

        Whether you call a friend and ask him/her to be an accountability partner, or whether you sketch out an alter ego for yourself so you can harness your power, you can use a hack to get you back on the track of being motivated to work out.

        You know how good you feel when you do, so give yourself that gift. You don’t have to wait until tomorrow — go get your sneakers on!

        Featured photo credit: Jonathan Borba via unsplash.com

        Reference

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