The everyday grind of life can leave us feeling a bit flat and devoid of energy.
The past two years or more have been particularly bad. We’ve been confined to our homes and may have put on some quarantine weight. Once we were let out, there was a desire to do as much as possible, eating out and socializing. Many people have begun to work from home, which also affects our health. The last two years have been a real struggle for people’s health.
Stay Fit Whilst Online Gaming
Some coped by turning to video games; it is estimated that 75% of all US households include someone who plays video games. With the rise of online gaming, that might be on a phone, a tablet or a home console and it’s likely to involve being seated for long periods. The phenomenon isn’t just reserved for the typical gamer, controller in hand transfixed to a screen; there are many other methods of online gaming people enjoy. Many people enjoy going online to play poker, with revenue from that sector rising year upon year. Indeed, that industry isn’t all about money either; many free poker apps, such as Zynga Poker, deliver the online experience and social interaction without a stake. Zynga is a leader in online games, with titles such as Words with Friends also wildly popular across the US, as are many simple world games. In almost every instance, players will find themselves sitting down to play.
That can lead to many health concerns, which online gamers must bear in mind. Symptoms can range from high blood pressure and high sugar levels to excess body fat around the waist and high cholesterol levels. That means a higher risk of diabetes, heart disease, and other nasty conditions. That’s why online gamers must go all-in on basic fitness protocols before, during, and after their gaming session. Doing so might help prevent health problems further down the line.
It’s a good idea to do a workout before a gaming session. You might not have access to a gym, but stretching can help you stay sharp while playing and stay fit. Doing a simple workout involving push-ups, sit-ups and stretches will release endorphins, which can help you focus and feel positive about your game.
If you struggle with basic exercises, try gamifying the experience. Pretend you have to unlock your console or phone before you can play, and only 30 push-ups, 20 sit-ups, and a sprint around the block will allow you to play. You’ll feel better about it, and it will help keep you fit.
There are two key elements to keeping fit whilst gaming, and the first is simple stretching. Between each session, level or match, make sure you stand up, stretch and maybe even have a walk around the room. We don’t mean to the fridge for snacks either but do something that stretches the body. It helps keep you flexible and will improve mobility and stability. Getting the blood pumping around your body will improve circulation and lower your blood pressure.
Also, consider getting a little cardio in whilst gaming. Again, it can be once you’ve finished a hand of poker or deathmatch on a shooter. Don’t go straight to another table or start another game; step away for a second and maybe do a short routine of push-ups and sit-ups. It once again reduces the risk of health complications from sitting too long.
Make sure you remain hydrated; go for water rather than caffeinated drinks. There is a misconception caffeinated drinks will keep you sharp, but they can make you more anxious, and they’re often high in sugar. Staying hydrated with good old-fashioned water is the best thing for your body.
Finally, you should have a routine for after gaming, and it doesn’t have to be tough. Make sure you drink some water and do a short workout. It might be best for another run around the block, as long as you haven’t played into the night, and then a shower to help feel cleaner. Even if this is before bed, it could help you sleep, and that’s another online gaming risk; going from screen to pillow with no transition can lead to broken and irregular sleep. Research has proven a good sleep pattern will help increase your basic level of health.
Exercises You can do while sitting in your Gaming Chair
All of these exercises will be performed sitting down, so make sure that your spine is straight and that your core is engaged (basically, tuck your belly in without curving your back). Place your legs straight out in front of you like they are a tabletop. As if using scissors, open and close them back and forth. To maintain the posture, you should exert extreme effort during a cutscene or while the game is loading.
Squeeze your abs
The isometric exercises you do won’t give you much cardio benefit, but they will gradually tone the muscles that are underused. While playing any game, you can easily do an ab squeeze, which involves sitting upright (good posture is important for a number of reasons) and bringing your upper and lower stomach together, holding, then releasing. Squeeze slowly and controllably for best results.
Extending the arms
As with the previous example, the best time to do this is when the action onscreen isn’t quite so frantic. Take your hands and let them hang at your knees after you’ve placed your orders in Xcom or finished a cycle in Civilization. Then, raise them to your shoulders, and then turn them into a T shape, and lower them back down again. Then do it in reverse.
It’s good for your neck to keep it straight if you keep your eyes on the TV while doing these. They are great for giving your body a full-body workout. Come into a squat while keeping your knees over your ankles and your butt back. While bending forward with your arms extended, keep your spine as straight as possible. When you do exercises like this, pay attention to your knees and rest them if they are aching.