Staying healthy in esports

Staying healthy in esports

Adam McGowan
9 min read | 17 Sep 2021

Keeping yourself on top form is really important for individuals in esports; whether you are a professional player or work behind the scenes.

In this article, we cover a few important things to consider in order to stay healthy and at the top of your game.  

1. Do regular hand and wrist exercises

It seems a bit strange, but making sure you stretch out your hands and wrists regularly can prevent repetitive strain injuries. 

If you are playing games for long periods of time, and having your hands in the same position for most of that, make sure to stop every so often to give yourself a break. 

Even if you aren’t playing games or competing, still take time to give your hands a break in between working to keep them from seizing up.

The most common exercise to do to help prevent injury is to rotate your wrists both clockwise and anticlockwise for a few minutes every so often. This is proven to help stop the development of things like carpal tunnel, which can be career-ending.

Red Bull put together a list of various hand exercises that are good for gamers to do, and don’t require too much effort or movement. 

2. Hydrate

Staying hydrated is incredibly important in making sure you can function at your best at all times. 

The NHS recommends that you drink 6-8 glasses of water, low-fat milk, and sugar-free drinks (such as tea or coffee) a day in order to maintain a balanced diet. 

We are all guilty of having a few energy or sugary drinks to get us through a long gaming session, but these can have a lot more of a negative impact on your performance. 

The high amounts of sugar and caffeine are not good for a balanced diet, but they can also increase your stress levels.

Whilst going for a flavoured drink can be okay in moderation, it is best to stick to water in order to keep yourself from becoming dehydrated.

By staying properly hydrated, your energy and concentration levels can boost to aid your work or gaming sessions!

RECOMMENDED: Check out our Esports Healthy Habits video on YouTube here.

3. Posture check!

Maintaining proper posture can be very beneficial, especially for gamers and those in esports who are at a desk for a large amount of time.

Having a good chair is a start to ensuring you don’t cause any damage to your back, neck and legs. Make sure you find a chair that is more practical than pretty (which is hard, we know!) – but having a pain-free gaming experience can really be influenced by your chair. 

Then, once you have a good chair you can adjust your sitting position to ensure you are as comfortable as possible. This includes making sure your wrists and elbows are resting in the appropriate position, and your screens are at eye level. 

If you are gaming or working for a long period of time, you may find yourself slouching and having poor posture. Keeping an eye on this is important to prevent injury or strain which could make your time sitting painful or uncomfortable.

Good posture is said to be:
– A straight back
– Feet flat on the floor with even weight distribution- Arms relaxed
– Eyes being level with the top of your screen

On top of keeping an eye out for poor posture, it is recommended that you stand up, stretch and take a break at least 15 minutes an hour. This can also prevent discomfort and make sure you are keeping yourself in good condition. 

So make sure you take those breaks to stand, adjust and get back into the right sitting position!

4. Get those breaks in

As mentioned previously, having regular breaks is vital to ensuring you maintain good wellbeing within esports and gaming.

By sitting in front of a screen for prolonged periods of time, you can potentially put a lot of unwanted strain on your eyes. This affects your performance, energy and concentration – which are things you want to keep at max!

On top of taking breaks to prevent eye strain, you should take regular rests to maintain a positive mental attitude. 

One of the biggest unspoken things in esports is mental health, and for players it can be difficult to stay positive if they are not performing as well as they want themselves to. 

Working yourself into a burnout can really affect your mental health, and cause you to dive deeper into that negative space. Taking breaks from games and screens can help to ease negativity, and give you time to get back into a positive mindset. 

Breaks can even just give you some time to relax, and get yourself ready to tackle your next task.

They are probably the most important thing to remember, and you will definitely notice the difference taking small breaks can have!

5. Get some variety in activities

Even though esports and gaming is an incredibly fun way to spend your time, it is probably worth changing it up regularly to prevent burnout. 

Whether you are a professional or a casual player, taking a step away from playing games to do a different activity can be really beneficial – both physically and mentally. 

Exercise is a good one to do, even if you just go for a walk! Getting your body moving and out of the stationary position you have whilst gaming will allow you to stay healthy and prevent any strain. 

Going to the gym or for a long walk is not always everyone’s cup of tea, so why not get creative? Do some painting, take some photographs, start to sew; the possibilities are endless.

Anything that you can do in your downtime to relax and get variety in your daily activities is really beneficial. 

So why not try a new sport or hobby and give some space for more interests alongside esports.

These are just a few tips you can use to help stay healthy within esports. We also have a video that outlines some other helpful habits you can get into to stay on top form!

Is there anything you want us to cover next? Let us know on our social media.

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