Players have to practise for hours on end every day to stay competitive, but with that level of play comes risks. Repetitive motions and poor habits can lead to strains and injuries, and left unattended, could end careers prematurely.
We interviewed several professionals who work to keep esports pros in shape. Doctors Caitlin McGee, Matthew Hwu and Levi Harrison work with teams and players across multiple games to heal and prevent issues like tendinitis, physical strain and poor ergonomics.
From the prevalence (or lack) of carpal tunnel to proper posture, these three are part of a growing movement to avoid injuries that can naturally arise from the hours and hours of practise esports pros have to endure.
Clacking keys; mashing buttons; running joysticks up and down in precise, intricate patterns. The motions of playing a video game are mechanical — frequent and repetitive — and suggest a machine at work, which is of course not far off, especially with the best players in the world routinely spending 12 hours a day playing a game. Now, physical therapists are needed to keep the machines from breaking down.