Why staying fit and healthy can make you a better gamer

A gamer playing console games with a headset in front of a television in his living room. (Photo: Getty Images)
Face it, gamers. Gaming is a very sedentary activity most of the time. (Photo: Getty Images)

As gamers, we spend a lot of our time in front of our consoles and computers, playing the games that we love or attempting to compete in.

Gaming is mostly a sedentary activity, with the exception of fast moving VR games like Beat Saber or some Nintendo Switch Sports party games.

We spend a lot of time sitting down on our chairs or sofa while playing games, unless if you have a standing desk, which, let's face it, is still relatively stagnant when it comes to physical activity.

Sometimes, some of us spend a little too much time trying to grind the ranking system in the games that we play, that we end up forgetting that we have a life outside of these games and a body to take care of.

It also puts a lot of stress on ourselves, and could ultimately lead us to being very toxic human beings to the people that we meet online and in real life, on top of compromising physical health.

But what if I told you that doing some physical activity and keeping relatively fit would help a lot in your games, especially competitive ones?

Exercising and having enough physical activity generally helps your well-being as a human being.

According to health sites like Health Hub Singapore, Mayo Clinic and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, exercising helps in a lot of ways to improve mood and senses, among many other benefits.

Here are a few positives that you will experience when you keep an active lifestyle.

It will sharpen your senses

Playing competitive games usually requires a lot of concentration to do well. If you've ever seen an esports tournament, you'll notice how intense the pro athletes are when the games are going on.

From noticing where your opponents and enemies are and reacting to things that happen in game, having sharp senses will generally keep you more alert in these situations.

When you do simple exercises like running or weightlifting, you are generally training your body to be a little more active and alert to the things that are happening around you.

This can easily translate to any kind of activity, and in our case, gaming.

Being alert to what is happening in-game can usually result in avoiding silly mistakes that you would regret later. It also leads to our next point.

You will make better decisions

Having an alert mind will usually result in better decision-making.

In addition to having better physical reactions, you will also react better mentally.

You will have improved senses for situations that you come across in your games, and it will also affect your critical thinking.

When it comes to competitive gaming, it is no different from a sport.

Making the right decisions can most of the time win you games, and also lift the spirits of the people you play with.

It will be good for your mental health

Let's face it, sometimes even the best people have terrible days in competitive gaming.

Things get so bad that we become toxic to the people around us, especially to the people you meet in game.

But studies have shown that exercising also improves the mental health and stability of a person.

As written on the Health Hub Singapore site, regular exercise can improve not just your physical health, but also "help to elevate your mood".

Physical activity may help bump up the production of endorphins, which are basically your brain's feel-good neurotransmitters.

By keeping a healthy lifestyle, you are more likely to brush off negative emotions that you experience when playing these games.

Remember, if you are not playing games for a living, it is just a game. It is something you do during your spare time.

It is very rarely that people will judge you based on what rank you have in VALORANT. Go outside and smell some roses, touch some grass, or do some push-ups.

A woman wearing a black virtual reality headset during a sport workout routine (Image: Getty Images)
Sometimes you can even combine your workouts with a VR game if you really want to. (Photo: Getty Images)

You will perform much better in the games that you play

With all of that said, you will generally perform much better when actually playing a game.

With the combination of being alert in-game, having better decision making and maintaining your composure, you are generally set up for success.

When things don't go well in a game, it is also important to keep your team's spirits going if you are playing a team-based game, or have an open mind to learning when you are playing a single player game (like fighting games).

Staying physically fit will not only make you healthy, it can also keep the time spent gaming mentally and emotionally healthy for the people you are playing with.

You will remain generally healthy

Like I mentioned earlier, gaming is mostly a sedentary activity.

Keeping fit will help move the blood in your body and keep you ready for life outside of gaming.

It can also help you avoid problems that are generally associated with sitting down for too long, like having tight hip and back muscles, and it also promotes blood circulation.

Moving around also helps to keep you generally healthy, as sitting down and gaming for long hours is generally not the best way to take care of your body.

Also remember, you will need your body to game, so to enjoy your games to the fullest, do take some care of your gaming vessel.

If you do feel like you've been staying put for too long while playing games, it is also recommended to just have a stretch to help the blood recirculate back into your body.

All-in-all, exercising regularly, perhaps three to four times a week, presents a lot of benefits for a gamer.

From improving your health to increasing your alertness, there are absolutely no downsides to staying active as a gamer.

And since it also improves your mood, you are also less likely to be affected by or exhibit toxic behaviour online.

Dominic loves tech and games. When he is not busy getting bodied in games or watercooling anything he sees, he does some pro wrestling.

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