The start of a new year is a time when many of us feel the need to resolve to be more healthy. The start of a new decade only amplifies this with proclamations that we will become a better version of ourselves and stop all the bad habits, and do more of the good.
Don’t let gaming fall into the ‘something to do less’ of category – not when you can while away the hours doing something you love and stay healthy at the same time. But how do you ensure you do maintain your health staying in the same spot for so long? We’ve put together our top tips for staying healthy whilst gaming – take a look to find out what they are:
1. Watch your screen time
The nature of gaming means that you are likely to fixate on a screen for an extended period of time. This can cause tension headaches but also issues with your vision such as dry eyes, eye strain, blurred vision and other discomfort. Taking regular breaks and staring off into the distance will help this as will having a break from all types of screen for periods in the day. The issues can be exacerbated if you keep the room dark whilst looking at a bright screen. For example, you often blink less, causing even drier eyes and the flickering lights cause your pupils to repeatedly dilate and contract which aggravates eye strain. So do yourself a favour and turn the lights on!
2. Hydrate yourself
It may sound far-fetched, but one of the first things we forget to do when deep in concentration is to drink enough water. Our cells (and therefore our bodily systems) require water or in order to function properly but before that, you’ll feel the physical effects such as fatigue and headaches. You won’t be able to regulate your body temperature or clear waste from your system. Even worse for a gamer – you will lose your concentration and focus! Keep a large bottle by your seat so you can easily get your intake up.
3. Stop posturing
Sitting in the same position can cause greater problems than a sore lower back. The wrong posture will mean that your spine is in the wrong position causing back and neck pain. You’ll also find your lungs and digestive system are compressed so you can’t breathe or process your food properly. Why not invest in a gaming chair to put your body in a better position if you’re going to spend a lot of time in it? You’ll also start to notice issues with your wrists from excessive gaming if you aren’t careful with your equipment. There are ergonomic keyboards available with an elongated lower part forming a wrist support so before your wrists start to trouble you, invest in the right kit with a new keyboard. It as the added benefit of a multi-coloured backlight too.
4. Move yourself
Whilst sitting in the same position will be improved by the right gaming chair, there is still avoiding the fact you need to more your body to stay healthy. Take regular breaks to get up and walk about, stretch your hunched muscles, stare off into the distance and even get outside for some natural light to ensure your body clock doesn’t end up too far out of kilter. You can even do exercises in your seat, the type you might do on a plane to avoid DVT – this will help your keep your circulation pumping.
5. Eat well
Eating a good diet may not seem all that feasible if you want to spend time on your computer but with the amount of delivery options now available, there’s no excuse! Plus, eating balanced meals of protein, complex carbs, healthy fats and fruit & veg will ensure your body stays healthy and your energy levels remain constant. Dips in focus and concentration can be hazardous to a gamer’s triumph so fuel yourself properly to avoid it.
It’s easy to be unhealthy when your hobby is as inactive and as involved as gaming but with these tips, it will become a lot harder. Don’t use the usual excuses when it will be straightforward to have the best of both worlds – break the trend and become a healthy gamer.