Gaming and Esports: Overview
Gaming is the act of playing games on consoles, desktops, and mobile devices. Esports, on the other hand, is a competitive mode of gaming where players play video games to compete with each other in organised tournaments or events. As technology is flourishing, the growth of gaming and esports is thriving as well. People from across the world are getting involved in gaming and esports on a large scale. It encourages the gaming industry to develop and introduce more trends in gaming.
As well as this, the massive involvement of gamers from across the world also helps the gaming industry to generate handsome revenue worldwide. According to the global video game market value published by Statista, the recent year’s gaming revenue was calculated to be 197.11 billion USD. It is predicted that the worldwide revenue will increase to more than 200 billion USD in the coming years. However, the following is the chart of the gaming or esports revenue from 2020 to 2025:
|1||2020||155.89 Billion USD|
|2||2021||178.37 Billion USD|
|3||2022||197.11 Billion USD|
|4||2023||217.06 Billion USD (estimated)|
|5||2024||240.31 Billion USD (estimated)|
|6||2025||268.81 Billion USD (estimated)|
Benefits of Gaming or Esports
Gaming or Esports have some mentionable benefits and leave good impacts on gamers’ mental health. However, the following are the most common benefits of gaming we can mention here:
- Improve cognitive function: Playing video games or participating in competitions helps improve cognitive functions, including memory, spatial awareness, and problem-solving skills.
- Relieving stress: Playing video games helps relieve stress in many ways. For example, they are very engaging and enjoyable, helping you get rid of your worries. Studies have shown that gaming results in dopamine secretion, making you feel good. Playing video games of your choice for a shorter period may also help you improve your mood.
- Increase competitive spirit: Gaming activities or esports consist of passion, self-belief, focus, measurement, and targets. All these components help increase your competitive spirit.
- Socialisation: Gaming or esports works as glue to stick people together. During long-time interactions with your game mates, you share similar characteristics, challenges, and experiences. It helps you make an online community and thus increases your social network.
- Career opportunities: As the gaming or esports industry is growing continuously, it brings more career opportunities, including game designing and development, esports management, and streaming games.
Gaming or Esports Downside
Indeed, the gaming industry is flourishing day after day and gaming trends are growing rapidly. As well as this, the activity brings many benefits. But, potential gaming or esports downsides have also been reported. As gamers or esports players are continuously involved in long-time sitting, using mouse and keyboards, thus they may be at potential risk of physical injuries. Some unlucky esports professionals may experience injuries, leading them to miss their favourite events, surgical treatments, or even early retirements.
There are a number of injuries found in gamers or esports professionals. However, the following are the most common complaints revealed by gamers or esports professionals:
- Eye strain: The condition occurs after prolonged screen time, including rapid and short eye movements and deep focus on the monitor.
- Mouse elbow: The condition develops due to repetitively gripping and squeezing the mouse during gameplay.
- Gamer’s thumb: This is a painful condition that occurs due to repetitive use of the thumb. The condition is more likely to develop in console gaming.
- Carpal tunnel syndrome: The condition usually occurs in gamers who spend more time using a PC with poor body mechanics. A prolonged wrist extension to hold the mouse is the common cause of this injury.
- Neck pain: The condition is caused by poor body position or posture during a prolonged time of gameplay.
- Lower back pain: Lower back pain is a common problem among esports players of all levels. The condition occurs due to prolonged sitting and bad body mechanics.
- Deep vein thrombosis, DVT: The condition occurs due to a lack of motion in gamers involved in long sessions of gaming or streaming.
Fitness and support products for gamers/esports players to prevent injuries
Gaming experts and healthcare professionals suggest wearing fitness and support products for gamers/esports players. It helps them to reduce the risk of overuse injuries. The following are the most commonly suggested supportive garments, every gamer must use to have an injury-free gaming or esports experience:
1. Wrist supports and braces
Wearing a wrist support brace helps provide gamer’s wrist with support and stability, helping reduce stress and other discomforts. Repetitive strain injury (RSI), carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS), and wrist sprain or strain are common wrist problems found in gamers.
A wrist brace helps esports professionals in many ways. For example, it helps distribute stress across your wrist and hand evenly. Thus, it helps reduce the risk of repetitive strain or overuse injuries. As well as this, it helps keep your wrist in a neutral or straight position, providing enough stability and improving mobility. In addition to this, it helps provide needed compression, helping keep your wrist muscles and joints warm and active.
2. Posture correctors
Spending a long time with poor posture and bad body mechanics may cause shoulder, neck, and back pain in gamers. Wearing posture correctors helps gamers in a variety of ways. For example, back posture correctors ensure proper alignment of the spine area, neck, and shoulder. As well as this, posture correctors are also best at improving breathing and circulation. Consequently, you get a wonderful gaming experience without any discomfort.
3. Elbow supports and braces
Gamer’s elbow or mouse elbow is one of the most common problems among gamers. The condition usually occurs when gamers make repetitive actions of their elbow during using the mouse and other tools. Wearing elbow support braces provide your elbow with stability and support, helping reduce stress on the elbow joint. Elbow braces are also best at providing needed compression, helping improve blood circulation. Thus, they help eliminate pain and speed up recovery as well.
4. Back belts or supports
Prolonged sitting and bad posture during gaming sessions can cause muscle strain and vertebral instability, causing back pain. Wearing back belts or supports helps keep your spinal structure align and stabilised. It helps reduce stress and improve mobility. As well as this, they are best at providing enough compression and support. Thus, they are helpful in minimising pain and other discomforts.
5. Compression socks
Gamers are required to sit on chairs for a prolonged time without any physical activity. This lack of motion may cause circulation problems in their lower legs, causing DVT and other venous problems. Wearing compression socks helps improve circulation in the lower legs, preventing the chances of blood clots. As well as this, decreasing swelling, improving lymphatic drainage, and preventing blood pooling are some other additional benefits of compression socks.
Other tips to prevent injuries in Esports?
Experts and gaming professionals also suggest some additional preventive measures to help control the risk of injuries:
Stretching exercises: Stretching exercises help build flexibility and reaction time. Thus, it helps reduce the chances of overuse injuries.
Take frequent breaks: Taking regular breaks during gaming sessions helps reduce the chances of repetitive strain and overuse injuries.
Maintain a good posture: Ensure that you maintain a good posture during your gaming session. For this purpose, you can take advice from professionals and healthcare advisors.
Use proper equipment: You need to invest in good quality gaming equipment. For example, you must look for ergonomic mouse and keyboards. They help reduce stress and repetitive action of your hand, wrist, and elbow.
Organise a professional gaming setup: Ensure that you have a professional gaming setup. For example, you have a gaming or ergonomic chair. It will help you ensure prolonged sitting without any discomfort. Get enough sleep: Getting proper sleep is crucial for your overall health. It helps gamers to develop an improved focus during gaming sessions. As well as this, it helps you keep active and reduce the risk of injuries resulting from poor body mechanics.