It’s not easy being a gamer. You’re on your PC playing your favorite games most of the time. And when you aren’t on your PC, you’re thinking about it. You’re either physically playing or you are mentally in a game, which is what we meant when we said it’s not easy being a gamer!
Back in the day, gamers had limited options when it came to playing games. They had to go all the way to gaming arcades to enjoy their favorite games, or they had to make it do with the available CD games.
However, things are a lot different now. There’s a whole universe of games available to gamers today. eSports are on the rise, and easy internet access has made it possible for gamers to enjoy the most advanced games on their PCs in the comfort of their homes.
eSports are highly interactive games. The graphics of these games are too good to be true, to say the least. How can someone not get hooked? While eSports offers gaming enthusiasts an excellent outlet for their gaming urges, it can have severe consequences on their health.
Gamers spend several hours of their day sitting in front of their computers. You may not feel the impact just yet, but it’ll start to take a toll on your body and health with time.
The eSports industry is massive, with millions of active gamers. The number is on the rise, and it’ll continue to rise in years to come. This means an increasing number of individuals are at risk of gaming-related health complications.
If you’re an active eSports player, the first thing that you’ve got to do is set up an ergonomic eSports gaming station so that your interests don’t cost you your physical wellbeing.
What Can a Bad eSports Gaming Setup Do to Your Health?
If you haven’t given much thought to your gaming setup, take a minute and observe yourself to see how you’re sitting. Is your back hunched? Are your shoulders slouched? Is your neck bending forward?
If the answer to any of these questions is a yes, you’re at a high risk of developing serious health complications. Poor posture can have long-lasting effects on your physical wellbeing. You may not feel the effects immediately, but continuing to use your gaming PC for extended durations will develop symptoms that indicate that your body needs a break.
If you ask us what can a bad eSports gaming setup do to your health, we would say it can cause enough damage to stop you from being able to play at all! Below are some of the health complications that you can suffer from due to a poor eSports gaming setup:
Neck and Shoulder Pain
If you’re bending your neck forward while you’re playing a game for several hours straight every day, it won’t be long before you start complaining about consistent neck pain.
Your neck isn’t in a natural posture, which is when the neck is aligned with the shoulders while you’re gaming. Instead, it’s hunched about an inch forward from your shoulders, and that’s what will cause strain on your neck muscles.
When you continue to stress your neck muscles, you’ll soon start to experience neck pain. While your neck is hunched forward, you’ll notice that your shoulders aren’t in the perfect resting position either. They’re slightly hunched or raised too. This will cause severe shoulder pain as well.
If you don’t give breaks between playing or work on correcting your posture, the neck and shoulder pain will worsen so much that you won’t be able to play games at all!
You may even develop Gamer’s Neck, which is caused by keeping your neck in a forward bending position for too long. It’s characterized by the neck, shoulder, and lower back pain and can even lead to strained muscles and nerves.
Lower Back Pain
Since you’re sitting with your back curved, all the weight of your body falls on your lower back. This will result in severe lower back pain, which can worsen enough to limit you to your bed.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Which part of your body is used the most when you’re gaming? Your hands. If you’re an avid gamer, you’re at a high risk of developing Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, which is characterized by numbness of the fingers and a tingling sensation in the hands.
Headaches and Poor Eyesight
Gaming excessively while sitting in a poor posture can result in headaches and impact your eyesight as well.
How to Make Your eSports Gaming Setup More Ergonomic?
Too much of anything is bad for you, even gaming. However, if you can’t manage your time, you’ll have to work on improving the ergonomics of your eSports gaming setup. If you don’t, you’ll end up suffering from serious ailments that might impair you from gaming at all.
Below are some tips that can help you make your eSports gaming setup more ergonomic:
1. Invest in a Gaming Chair
The best way to make your eSports gaming setup more ergonomic is to replace your existing chair with a gaming chair. Gaming chairs are not like regular office chairs.
These chairs are designed keeping in mind how a gamer would use them. For example, the Fluorescent Racing Style Chair is designed specifically for gamers who play racing games. With 360 degrees smooth swivel, cushioned seat, and adjustable armrests, among many other features, it ensures the gamer is absolutely comfortable throughout the time they’re playing. Some of the most notable features of a gaming chair include:
High, cushioned backrest to provide support to the back, neck and shoulders to ensure that the gamer’s upper body is fully supported while they’re playing.
Flexible lumbar support ensures that the seat is adjusted to match the curvature of the gamer’s back. This ensures optimal support to the spine.
The adjustable height feature ensures that the chair is adjusted according to the gamers’ height so that their feet aren’t dangling in the air. Ideally, the feet should rest flat on the floor.
Adjustable armrests provide the elbows with adequate support. If there’s no armrest, the gamers’ elbows will stay unsupported in the air while the gamer is playing, which can result in muscle fatigue in the arms.
2. Replace Your Table
If you’re using a regular computer table for your gaming PC, you should replace it with a gaming desk. A gaming desk is much larger than a regular PC desk. They enable you to install multiple screens at a time.
The best gaming desks come with various features like height adjustment to ensure the height of the table is set comfortably high for the gamer. Some tables also come with movable monitor arms that enable you to adjust the height and angle of your gaming monitor.
When the gaming monitor, keyboard, and mouse are kept at the right height for the user, the user won’t have to stretch their back, extend or bend their neck, or place their arms in an uncomfortable position while playing. This would reduce the risk of any posture-related musculoskeletal complications.
3. Use a Gaming Keyboard
If you’re active eSports player, you’ll very well know the pace at which you’ve got to switch between controls. Since you don’t have a gaming remote like that in the PlayStation, you’ve got to do it all on your keyboard.
Using the regular keyboard may limit your game and even make your gaming experience uncomfortable. The keys of a regular keyboard aren’t designed or organized with the gaming controls in mind. However, a gaming keyboard can change your gaming experience entirely.
The keys of a gaming keyboard are softer and more comfortable. You don’t have to press them too hard, that will prevent any stress on your fingers.
The arrangement of keys is such that you don’t have to move your hands too much. The most important feature is wrist support. When you use a gaming keyboard, you won’t have to lift your hands at the wrists in awkward positions. Your wrists will rest on the wrist support, and you’ll just have to switch between the keys, which are organized to suit your gaming needs!
Photo Credit: HP
4. Install a Glare Protector
Sitting in front of your computer screen can put stress on your eyes. The glare from the screen can strain your eyes and can even affect your eyesight. If you want to make your eSports gaming setup more ergonomic, install a glare protector so that your eyes are protected from the glare.
Photo Credit: Amazon
5. Lumbar Support Cushion
If you don’t have the budget to invest in a gaming chair, buy a lumbar support cushion instead. It’ll provide your back with the much-needed support. The stress on your back will be greatly reduced, and so will your back pain complaints!
eSports gaming is extremely engaging and interactive, and it’s normal for the gamers to lose track of time. If you’re one of those eSports fans, you should work on making your eSports gaming setup ergonomic so that you can have all the fun you want without worrying about putting yourself at risk.