Many of us have been hitting the Overwatch circuit for a little while now, desperately playing match after match to reach the next level and finally earn the coveted loot box of our dreams, only to find three more sprays and a voice line. (Although, I am very happy that I can have Hanzo call out for sake repeatedly to other players in spawn.) Accepting the fact that loot boxes—and actually improving one’s in-game performance—are worthy and noble goals, repetitive strain injuries (RSIs) are very real issues. That got serious quickly, didn’t it?
Hours and hours of playing games, whether for professional or recreational purposes, can take its toll on your hands, wrists, and forearms, among other areas. When you game for long periods of time, you’re putting these parts of your body under immense strain as they perform the same movements repeatedly and often in quick succession. Poor posture while sitting, as well as excessive typing on a keyboard or mobile phone, can exacerbate the strain and lead to RSIs, which in turn can cause such conditions as carpal tunnel syndrome. These kinds of injuries are really serious problems in the gaming community, but there are resources out there that can help.
His YouTube channel features workout videos, Q&A sessions, and videos of his weekly radio show in Los Angeles, as well as general health and fitness tips for people with varying lifestyles and occupations. Dr. Levi has uploaded several videos that specifically address gamers, but we’re only going to include a couple here. You should absolutely check out his YouTube channel for even more exercises and information.
This first video got pretty popular after being passed around on Reddit two years ago, and in it Dr. Levi describes his top seven tips for gamers, which include exercises for your hands and wrists. At the beginning, he emphasizes that these exercises will not only keep your hands healthy so that you can continue gaming longer, but also increase “your action per minute” and the “efficiency at which you play.” We’ll let the doctor himself take it from here.
More recently, Dr. Levi uploaded another video with three more exercises for your hands, wrists, and forearms. All of these exercises can easily be done whilst seated in front of your computer, but I’m sure Dr. Levi would recommend standing up occasionally too.
Whether you’re a professional or an amateur gamer, or if you just find yourself seated for long hours in front of your desk, these exercises and tips will make a difference. In fact, I think I’m going to take a five-minute break from this article to stretch out my first extensor dorsal compartments.
Have you found any exercises that work for you? How do you keep your hands going during those long gaming sessions? Let us know in the comments!