eSports has taken the world by storm with numerous competitions, intense professional players, and the most exciting part: large amounts of pot money. eSports matches are usually entertaining to watch, with the high stakes driving their intensity up a few notches.
Watching eSports matches is also rewarding if the games are familiar and are ones that your gamer plays themselves as they can learn “pro moves” along the way.
Similar to the likes of basketball and football, eSports is built on schools, universities, professional teams and organizations willing to invest in potential players.
Also quite similar to regular sports, eSports players follow a regimen for training – which then begs the following questions: Is nutrition important to eSports?
Do gamers need to exercise? Is sleep important to gamers?
To put it simply, eSports players also need to watch their diet and exercise. If you have a child interested in eSports, talking to them about the benefits of a healthier lifestyle to their future gaming career could help push them in the right direction at an early age.
Listed below are the reasons why such matters are important in the world of eSports, with a few vital tips and tricks sprinkled along the way.
Why Nutrition Often Presents a Problem in the World of eSports
Studies show that 80% of gamers snack while they play games – and no, they don’t snack on leafy greens or fruits.
Gamers have a tendency to snack on unhealthy foods, such as M&Ms and Mountain Dew, and worst of all, they won’t know how much they’ve eaten until after the fact.
Gamers usually do something called “mindless eating,” which happens when we eat food while doing something else, and often, it leads to a terrible gauge of our level of fullness.
So, you must be asking, “How can I get my gamer to eat better?”
Portioning snacks into bowls or containers instead of bringing whole bags of chips and sweets should do the trick when trying to limit consumption.
Trying out some healthier options, like cereals, fruits, or nuts can also help improve a gamer’s overall diet – even if it’s just for snacking. Overall, making conscious choices and decisions regarding your diet will help reduce “mindless” eating and ultimately keep a mindset of consciousness while gaming.
Why Exercise Is Another eSports Issue
Another issue that gamers have to deal with is the fact that they are mostly sedentary when they are gaming. Unlike regular sports where constant movement is a key part of the game, eSports requires one to be seated for hours on end, all while keeping reflexes and strategic thinking sharp.
Playing long hours of any game – especially when it’s a competitive game – can strain and even burn you out.
It’s worth noting that professional eSports players tend to spend more than eight hours in training per day, which means more than eight hours of sitting on a chair, which can lead to muscles getting pretty strained and even injured, particularly those in the elbow, wrist, lower back, and neck. Apart from that, this lack of exercise can lead to health problems later down the line.
To top it all off, going beyond the average hours spent in front of the screen can make professional gamers more prone to eyesight issues and headaches.
Addressing Issues of Exercise and Nutrition in Gaming and eSports
There are a lot of health issues that come hand in hand with gaming, but as with regular sports, you can help your child prevent injuries and stay healthy.
Teaching your child to make the decision to eat better food and exercise – and stick with it –will help create the balance you seek for you and your gamer child.
Being More Active Can Actually Help Gamers Perform Better
Some studies have shown that gamers who are actively exercising, or simply engaging in activities where they have to move around often, have better cognitive function than gamers who remain sedentary. In particular, those who engage in activity have “more efficient encoding times, more efficient retrieval latency times, and higher response accuracy of information.”
In other words, those who manage to remain active while constantly gaming have better potential to improve their hand-eye coordination and reflexes than those who don’t subscribe to any active habit.
These quick-reflex actions are vital in the world of eSports and can be the fine line between victory and defeat.
Eating Better Can Also Have Positive Effects on Gaming
Apart from portioning and eating the usual fruits and veggies, some other tasty snacks are healthy and can actually improve cognition.
Dark chocolate, popcorn, and nuts are very good at improving memory and at keeping your energy high, while hard boiled eggs and fish (like a tuna sandwich or salmon sushi) are especially great at giving you those brain-boosting nutrients.
Oh, and the best liquid for gamers? Sure, you have energy drinks and such, but the best is still water.
Gamers should be drinking 30-50 ounces of water per day, and they should be drinking it more than any other drink.
Sleep Also Plays a Key Role in Ensuring Optimal Gaming Performance
There’s a reason why we spend about a third of our day sleeping. Without sleep, we’ll all be extremely sluggish with slow reaction times and weaker immune systems – which are especially bad for gamers since fast reflexes and sharp thinking is what draws the line between good players and great players. You may be talented at gaming, but if you don’t have quick reflexes and if you’re slow in your responses and actions, chances are you’re going to drive yourself to an even more exhausted state that is difficult to get out of.
Poor sleeping patterns can be resolved with proper discipline. Saying no to those extra games or turning off the lights an hour before your intended sleeping time can help induce sleep.
I hope these tips help you and your gamer create healthier habits that may even improve the gaming experience. As always, feel free to leave your comments, ideas, or experiences regarding these very important considerations concerning the gaming lifestyle.