As men pass the age of 50, they often find they have more free time than ever before. Children grow up and move out of the house, careers become more established, and commitments lessen. This newfound free time provides the perfect opportunity to pursue new hobbies or reignite old passions.
Picking up a hobby in your 50s and beyond comes with many proven benefits, such as:
- Alleviating stress
- Boosting brain health
- Warding off depression
- Increasing physical activity
- Meeting new people
- Learning new skills
When choosing a hobby in your 50s, it’s important to find activities that align with your interests, personality, physical abilities, and budget. To help you start brainstorming ideas, here are 27 great hobbies for men over 50:
Golf remains an extremely popular hobby for men in their 50s. What’s not to love about spending a few hours outside swinging clubs and enjoying the company of friends? Golf is a low-impact activity that gets you walking and soaking up some vitamin D. Join a club or book regular tee times to make new golf buddies.
Fishing is a relaxing and rewarding hobby that gets you outdoors. There’s something profoundly gratifying about casting a line and seeing what you can reel in. Fishing requires patience and strategy, which keep your mind sharp. Look for local fishing spots or consider planning weekend trips to enjoy bigger catches.
If you like working with your hands and building things, woodworking is a constructive hobby to try in your 50s. Woodworking lets you make items for yourself and loved ones, from furniture to decorative pieces. This hobby exercises your creativity and problem-solving skills while producing tangible results.
Your 50s are a prime time to satisfy your wanderlust. With kids grown up and more financial freedom, you can finally take those bucket-list trips abroad or weekend road trips that had been put off. Travel expands your perspectives while creating priceless experiences and memories.
Capture life’s simple moments and natural wonders with photography. Digital cameras and editing software have made photography extremely user-friendly these days. You’ll stimulate your creative side while preserving special memories for yourself and your loved ones. Local community education courses provide photography instruction.
Cooking transitions nicely from a necessary chore to a rewarding hobby right around your 50s. With more time on your hands in the kitchen, you can expand your skills and whip up dishes you’ve always wanted to try. Nurture your loved ones by preparing home-cooked meals that remind them of childhood.
Yoga provides an array of physical and mental benefits—increased flexibility, better balance, reduced stress, etc.—that appeal to men over 50. The meditative breathing and deliberate movements leave you feeling relaxed and at peace. Yoga comes in many forms and is gentle enough for beginners.
Experience the simplicity and serenity of the great outdoors with camping. Pitch a tent under the stars, roast marshmallows around a crackling fire, cast for fish in a lake—it’s a soothing escape. Short weekend camping trips are exciting adventures that create lasting memories without requiring extensive gear or travel.
Cultivate your green thumb with gardening. Tend to vegetables, fruits, flowers, trees, and shrubs in your own backyard sanctuary. Gardening provides low-intensity exercise and gets you outside to relieve stress by digging in the dirt. Getting your hands dirty while growing plants is tremendously rewarding.
Feed your natural curiosity and appreciation for wildlife with birdwatching. You’ll be amazed by the diverse species living around you. Watching birds fosters mindfulness as you tune into nature. Bring along field guides and binoculars as you explore local parks or your own backyard.
Chess provides the ultimate brain workout. The classic strategy game enhances cognitive abilities like memory, critical thinking, and evaluation. Play casual games with a buddy or join a local chess club to test your skills against worthy opponents. The options for play are extremely flexible to suit your schedule.
Dig into your family history with genealogy. Piecing together your ancestry is an engrossing mental challenge. Genealogy gives you insights into your lineage while revealing fascinating narratives of relatives’ lives. As a bonus, kids and grandkids will appreciate learning about their forebears.
Attending concerts allows you to revisit the musical passions of your youth. Rock shows get your blood pumping, while symphonies and festivals offer variety. Concerts make for lively date nights or group outings. And iconic aging musicians like the Rolling Stones prove you’re never too old to rock and roll.
14. Standup Comedy
Laughter is truly great medicine. Attend stand-up shows at local comedy clubs to release feel-good endorphins and de-stress. Catching rising talent is very affordable, and talented comics cater their sets to adult audiences. Going to shows regularly gives you a mental boost and conversational fodder.
Volunteering gives you a sense of purpose post-career. Offer your time and talents to causes dear to your heart, like animal shelters, veterans organizations, conservation groups, museums, etc. You’ll form meaningful connections in your community and establish heartwarming friendships in the process.
If you fancy yourself as a storyteller, try your hand at writing. Fiction writing lets your imagination run wild. You may even pen the next great American novel! If nonfiction is more your style, start a blog to muse about topics you’re passionate about, whether it’s sports, politics, gardening, etc.
Rekindle your dancing shoes to stay spry physically and mentally. Sign up for ballroom, salsa, swing, or tap classes to learn choreographed steps. Dancing engages your body and mind simultaneously by forcing you to memorize and perform sequences. It can be practiced solo or with a partner for social interaction.
Puzzles make for inexpensive and screen-free entertainment right from your home. Jigsaw puzzles boost cognition, spatial reasoning, and short-term memory. Alternate between 1,000-piece behemoths when you want an intense challenge or 300-piece pops for quick puzzling gratification.
Bowling remains one of America’s favorite pastimes for good reason: it’s social, gentle on the body, and beginner-friendly. Organize a weekly league to foster camaraderie through friendly competition. Bowling engages muscles and joints through movement while providing laughter-filled stress relief.
With kids out of the house, now may be the perfect time to buy that motorcycle you’ve always admired from afar. Nothing conjures a quintessential sense of freedom quite like cruising along an open highway atop your new bike. Start with weekend joyrides before embarking on cross-country tours.
21. Musical Instrument
Learning to play a musical instrument imparts an invaluable creative outlet. Choose a lifelong dream instrument like the guitar, drums, piano, or saxophone. Mastering notes and songs boosts memory capacity, coordination, and pattern recognition. Once proficient, you can jam alone or join a local band.
22. Model Building
Model building allows you to marvel at miniature recreations of vehicles like planes, trains, and automobiles. This hobby exercises fine motor skills and attention to detail as you meticulously assemble exact replicas. Display your completed models proudly or enter contests.
Foster a sense of wonder and whimsy in your golden years by learning magic tricks. Study techniques like card manipulation, coin handling, and sleight of hand. Then dazzle family and friends with your newest feats of illusion at gatherings. Magic helps maintain manual dexterity and mental acuity.
Try your hand at podcasting—recording episodic digital audio files available on demand online. Podcasting provides an outlet for sharing your voice on myriad topics, from sports to politics to entertainment. Once comfortable behind the mic, invite interesting guests to your show for riveting dialogue.
Reading books transports you to foreign lands and immerses you in compelling stories. Fiction novels spark imagination and fuel escapism. Nonfiction books increase knowledge across subjects like history, science, biographies, etc. Local book clubs provide social opportunities to discuss your latest reads.
26. Board Games
Game nights provide endless amusement while interacting with other players in person. Classic strategy games like chess and checkers, mixed with popular new titles like Settlers of Catan, yield hours of competitive fun. Playing games exercises memory, critical thinking, and risk assessment in a social setting.
Pickleball has exploded into a sensation across American suburbs thanks to its fast-paced play and friendly competition. Part ping-pong, part tennis, and part badminton, pickleball provides an addictive cardio workout and an instant social community. The game uses a perforated plastic ball and short paddles on a small court. Have a blast with this bonus hobby!
The milestone of turning 50 opens up new possibilities to pursue hobbies that nurture your mind, body, and soul. Branch out beyond your comfort zone to challenge yourself. Don’t be afraid to get a little weird and wild too! Now is the time to have fun.
These 27 hobbies, from golfing to guitars to grand adventures, help men over 50 stay active and engaged. Pick one or mix and match several to build a well-rounded lifestyle. Your golden years will be enriched by these pastimes, which provide meaning, laughter, and lasting memories.