An esports professional’s life may appear to be glamorous and carefree. But for all of the glamour, the fame, and the parties, there is an often-overlooked darker side. Just like any sport, the risk of injury is ever-present, and esports athletes may suffer from a variety of ailments as a result of their intense training and the peculiar nature of their sport, some of which can become career-ending.
The most common esports injuries
Because of the sedentary nature of video games, many people will find it difficult to accept that player injuries are common and can even lead to the end of their careers. However, unlike traditional athletes, there is no support system in place to help players avoid, treat, and care for injuries. Studies have shown that eye fatigue is the most common problem for esports players, especially for those who play highly competitive games like LoL and CSGO, followed by neck and back pain and then pain associated with the hand and wrist.
It’s tough not to have some level of eye strain when you spend all day staring at a computer screen. The blue light emitted by most monitors can cause eye irritation, which is especially problematic for esports players, who spend a substantial amount of their day, typically 8-10 hours, doing just that. And, given the required degree of attention and reaction time, their eyesight may suffer as a result.
Back and Neck Pain
Back and neck pain are without doubt two of the most familiar ailments that are experienced by gamers who sit in the same position for significant periods of time. This is usually caused by improper gaming chairs and bad posture. In the tension of top-line competitive esports, it is natural for players to slouch or to move closer to the screen, both of which can lead to long-term complications.
Repetitive strain injuries (RSI) are frequent in many sports. They are caused when you have to use the same small group of muscles in the same way over and over again. Esports players are particularly prone to hand and wrist problems. No matter how ergonomic their mouse and keyboard are, the body is not suited to performing the same precise tasks using the same set of muscles thousands of times a day. RSI is a common problem for esports players, and longer-term problems such as arthritis can also occur.
Carpal tunnel syndrome is the most prevalent wrist ailment. This injury happens when the carpal tunnel becomes too narrow and the structures within it run out of room. The mid-arm nerve and the tiny veins that supply the carpal tunnel are put under more strain as a result of this. As a result, the nerve no longer receives enough oxygen or nutrients. The function is hampered, and long-term issues may arise, including arm numbness and loss of fine motor skills, both of which can be career-ending.
Esports injuries prevention
To avoid or limit the harm of this type of injury, it is important for esports players, particularly those who are not signed with a big team and so don’t have access to the resources or support that some of the top players can use, to take preventative action.
One option to reduce eye strain is to consider the equipment you use. Some monitors now come with technology that reduces blue light and is adapted to protect your eyes. You should also consider eye care equipment that protects you from blue light and screen flicker.
Back and neck pain can be alleviated by ensuring that you use a high-quality gaming chair that provides proper lumbar support. You may also benefit from a specialized mattress. A mattress with effective support can provide a chance for your back and neck muscles to fully relax and recover.
When it comes to hand and wrist injury prevention, there are many steps you can take, including special stretching exercises with your arms and using a rubber band around your hand to strengthen your hand muscles. General stretching and maintaining a good overall level of fitness can also help to limit the risk of serious injury and ensure that your esports gaming career is not over before it has begun.