Video gaming – a new generation of eSport athletes!
Video gaming is becoming more and more popular amongst the UK population with people spending longer sat in front of the screen in often static postures for prolonged periods. However, there is a lack of understanding of the health conditions associated with this as eSporters are more susceptible to musculoskeletal injuries of the neck, back and upper extremities. Research looking at posture while gaming has found that within 30 minutes of gameplay there was a forward translation of the head compared with the spine and for every one inch adds 10 pounds of increased torque in the cervical extensor muscles. This can cause increased stress on the cervicothoracic junction and paraspinal muscles, which in turn can cause regional imbalances in muscle tension. As a result eSport athletes are also more at risk of cervicogenic and tension headaches. This is not only the case in the neck but also in the lower back, slumping postures can place unnecessary strain on the intervertebral discs and sitting in a seat with a backrest can cause an increase in posterior pelvic tilt which again can lead to muscle tension and imbalances. Other common injuries seen in this population are shoulder pain and repetitive strain injuries involving fingers, wrists and hands.
Interventions to help treat injuries of this kind are stretches, strengthening, manual therapy, advice and education and postural re-training. We also hold free posture workshops at the clinic and one of our physiotherapists specialises in headaches. If you want to find out more about how Physiotherapy can help you or to book in for an initial assessment then click here.
Backcare. TalkBack. Winter 2019 edition.
Hallie Zwibel, DO, MPH; Joanne DiFrancisco-Donoghue, Amanda DeFeo, Sheldon Yao. An Osteopathic Physician’s Approach to the Esports athlete. Journal of the American osteopathic Association