Gaming in this article is defined as using electronic equipment for at least one hour per day. Whether it be surfing Facebook, playing Xbox or PC games, or even reading comics on your iPad, the amount of time you spend daily on technology adds up quickly. Unfortunately, there are lots of people who develop back problems because they don’t take the right precautions when handling their electronic devices. Luckily, though there are some things you can do to prevent and alleviate the effects that heavy game playing might have on your back.
Buy A Gaming Chair
You would probably never think of playing sports without being in the proper equipment, yet when it comes time to game, many people just plop down on whatever piece of furniture happens to be nearby. Not buying gaming chairs online is a mistake. You have to have a chair designed specifically for gaming. For starters, it will have all the necessary adjustments so you can get comfortable quickly and easily.
Then there’s the issue of durability-gaming chairs are built to last much longer than your average desk chair. Perhaps most importantly, this type of chair has back support that traditional office chairs often lack.
Take Breaks To Stretch
If you think about it, spending hours sitting still isn’t good for anyone—not even if you’re healthy and physically fit. That’s why you should take frequent breaks when you game to do stretching exercises. Stretching is important for everyone, but it’s especially crucial for gamers because low flexibility can lead to joint pain or even muscle tears when you sit in the same position too long.
For instance, try these desk stretches every time you feel like you’ve been sitting for too long:
- Sit straight in your chair.
- Put both feet flat against the floor.
- Place your hands on both sides of your body, fingers facing forward with arms bent at a 90-degree angle from the elbow.
- Slide up and down slightly to put pressure on different parts of your back while breathing deeply for a couple of seconds at a time, then relax and sit back in a comfortable position. Repeat these steps five times.
- Next, cross one leg over the other knee and stretch by leaning over toward that side until you feel a pull-behind or below the opposite shoulder blade (repeat on each side if necessary).
- Lean forward by bending at the waist as far as you can comfortably go.
- Finally, place both hands on your desk with fingers pointing toward you and push yourself back in your chair to stretch out your spine while breathing deeply for a couple of seconds at a time, then relax.
By taking even just five minutes every hour to do these stretches or one of many other office exercises, you can avoid cramps that could develop into serious back problems later on.
Eating well is essential in keeping everything running properly inside the body including the spine which has discs between its vertebrae.
If you’re sitting for most of the day, it’s important to keep these discs plump with lots of healthy nutrients. Eating healthy proteins like fish packed with omega-3s, fruits and vegetables rich in antioxidants, whole grains instead of simple carbohydrates are all great options. Plus, water helps not only hydrate your body but also avoid constipation which can cause back problems by forcing you to strain or sit crookedly in a bad posture. You might not be able to control some factors that contribute to back pain from gaming such as genetics, smoking cigarettes, or poor decisions regarding your exercise habits.
It’s easy to develop bad habits when you game because the games themselves are so immersive. By finding ways to incorporate physical activity into your gaming, you can avoid many of the common problems that come along with being a heavy gamer. For example, rather than using a controller for your Xbox or PlayStation, consider investing in an arcade stick which allows you to do away with flimsy controllers completely. Then there are motion controls.
These types of accessories allow you to mimic actual movement instead of just pressing buttons on traditional controllers. There are lots of possibilities beyond that—like buying new shoes, getting Fitbit bands, checking out Fitbits, and tracking calories burned playing video games! Even changing character equipment and playstyles can keep things fresh and keep your injuries from piling up.
Invest in a quality gaming chair. Eating healthy foods and exercising is crucial when you enjoy gaming because they can help prevent injury and keep everything in working order. Nutrition is an important part of how your body functions, so make sure you eat right when you game! Also, try integrating physical activity into gaming by checking out accessories like arcade sticks or motion controllers to avoid injuries from playing video games. It isn’t always easy to stop playing when the latest games are released, but if you buy the right chair, if you take frequent breaks, exercise regularly, and eat well, then maybe you can avoid some of the nagging problems that come along with being a heavy gamer.