How eSports Athletes Should Avoid Upper Back Pain

 

 

 

 

Pro gamers and eSports athletes have a daily routine that is a lot more rigorous than most people realize. Over  60 hours a week to practice video games at a competitive level is very common and can put serious strain on the body over time. For most pro gamers there is no true down time and running off of 4-6 hours of sleep can cause health problems. Not only is there a mental exhaustion while playing, the physical strain on the upper and lower back can turn a lucrative six-figure career into a long-term health problem.

Sitting long periods during just one session will cause a gamer to get muscle fatigue and this leads to poor posture, soreness and aching muscles. The “slouching”  elementary school teachers warned students about is nothing compared to what takes place with eSport athletes. The poor posture can cause a disorder called upper crossed syndrome. This is the result of the muscles in shoulders, neck and chest lose their proper balance of function and lead to health issues.

The muscles in the front of the neck and upper back become shortened and weak and other opposing muscles are overstretched. The most common activity that causes upper cross syndrome is computer use. Reading, biking, cell phone use and long-term television use have all been top causes for people suffering from this condition. The muscles that are “trained” in this position will create poor posture that can be challenging to correct if the activity continues.

Common symptoms of upper cross syndrome include:

  • headaches
  • neck pain
  • jaw pain
  • shoulder pain
  • chest tightness
  • Numbness or tingling in the shoulders and arms

It is very important that the elite gamer and pro eSport athlete monitor how they feel while practicing or performing to avoid upper back pain. Simple steps such as using the best gaming chair, taking short breaks and performing stretches for just a few minutes during the course of the day can prevent a career being shortened due to injury and insure the gaming future of the athlete. If the symptoms of upper crossed syndrome have already started it is very important to pay attention to the amount of time being spent playing and to develop a plan that will prevent the problem from getting worse. A set time period to allow for stretching and breaks is the most important. Staying hydrated will also help. Avoid caffeinated drinks and sodas to decrease inflammation in the body that can also increase discomfort and interfere with the body as it attempts to heal properly. 

 

Leave a Reply