Incorporating healthy gaming habits into your lifestyle can increase your performance, well-being, and fitness.
You’ll level up in no time with these simple tips and tricks.
Who doesn’t love a late-night gaming session? Level grinding, bloodshot eyes, and LED suntans are great, but poor habits can lead to health issues over time. You don’t even have to put down your controller or mouse to stay fit — you can improve your performance, well-being, and fitness by keeping a few healthy gaming habits in mind.
Practice good posture
You’ve probably heard the phrase, “sitting is the new smoking.” Although this phrase is a bit hyperbolic, prolonged sitting can lead to health complications over time. Regardless of the seat, sitting in a chair is not an anatomically normal position. Prolonged sitting and bad posture can lead to back pain, headaches, carpal tunnel, and other adverse effects. A couple of quick fixes can alleviate lousy posture.
Rest your head against the headrest if your chair has one.
- Keep your ears, shoulders, and hips aligned.
- Aim to keep your lower back pressed against your chair. Sitting away from the backrest can cause a slouched position.
- Avoid shrugging or rounding your shoulders. Instead, slightly pull your shoulder blades down and toward each other.
- Keep your hips and knees at 90 degrees with both feet flat on the ground.
Whether playing on a console or PC, you’re most likely sitting for prolonged periods while you game. These gaming sessions can lead to tight muscles, muscle imbalances, joint pain, and more. You can practice stretching exercises before, during, and after gaming to improve your well-being.
You can find full stretching routines designed for gamers online. Some programs are designed to prevent injury, while others are meant to warm up. Most stretches designed for gamers will revolve around the hands, wrists, fingers, and forearms.
Rest your eyes
Eye strain is a severe risk for gamers. The muscles around your eyes can become irritated and strained after staring at a screen for prolonged periods. Strained eyes can cause fatigue, headaches, dry eyes, and more. You can use the following tricks to rest your eyes during gaming sessions:
- Every 5-10 minutes: Be sure to consciously blink your eyes every 5-10 minutes. Close your eyes and hold them shut for three seconds. Repeat this process five times to keep your eyes moisturized.
- Every 20-30 minutes: Be sure to take a break from looking at your screen every 20-30 minutes. Focus on something roughly 20 feet away for around 20 seconds to rest your eyes.
One of the easiest habits you can incorporate into your gaming sessions is to take frequent breaks. Taking breaks provides your mind and body with a reset. You can even use breaks to incorporate some of the other techniques above.
You can take a break in several ways, but one of the best options might be moving around. Try taking a break every one to two hours and go for a walk. The walk doesn’t have to be extensive — walking for five minutes around your house can do wonders for your well-being.
Staying hydrated is essential, even while you game. It’s incredibly easy to fall into patterns of consuming drinks high in sugar or caffeine. These drinks can be enjoyed in moderation but can be harmful in excess. Ensure you’re drinking enough water throughout the day and while you game. You might want to drink a 1:1 ratio of sugary drinks to water to start.
Healthy gaming habits can improve your well-being and performance and keep you fit. What’s great is that these lifestyle changes don’t have to be dramatic. Improving your posture, taking more breaks, stretching, and moving a bit more can make a significant impact. With these tips in mind, you can level up inside and outside the game.
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