We all know how easy it is to sink countless hours into our favourite video games. In the age of esports and leader boards, many gamers are devoting a lot of time to competitive ladder climbing.
Unfortunately, many gamers overlook the impact ergonomics can have on their gameplay and health. Over time, using your desk space inefficiently will lead to wrist and spinal issues that detract from your life outside of the game. These three ergonomics tips will help you stay at peak performance — in the game and out.
Choosing the Right Chair
It all starts with selecting an appropriate gaming chair. Above all, every gamer needs a chair that provides support in the right areas.
A good gaming chair will feature an adjustable back that can be set to align with your lower spine. It’s important that your chair provides support to the lower arch of your back as this is the area that suffers the brunt of the punishment from poor posture.
Adjustable armrests are another requirement of a great chair. Your armrests should be set at a height that encourages relaxation in your shoulders. Ultimately, the objective of your armrests is to pull pressure away from your wrists. This is done most efficiently when your elbows are resting at a 90-degree angle.
Positioning Your Screen
Once you’ve selected a good chair, the next step is to find the right position for your screen. As a point of reference, your screen should be adjusted according to where your eyes will be when you’re sitting completely straight in your chair.
The objective is to keep your neck level during your play session. Tilting your neck up or down over an extended period of time can lead to damage to your neck and upper spine.
Contrary to what seems most intuitive, positioning the center of your screen at eye level is an ergonomic mistake. Depending on the size of your screen, you will unconsciously tilt your head up or down to see things on different parts of the monitor.
Instead, it’s better to keep the top quadrant of your screen at eye level while keeping the screen tilted slightly upward. This promotes a full view of the entire screen without requiring any movement in the neck.
The final trick with screen positioning is to keep your monitor one arm’s length away from your eyes. Even with your screen height and tilt optimized, sitting too close to the screen encourages more movement in the neck.
Sitting Up Straight
This is the final piece to the ergonomic puzzle, and it should be the easiest to implement if you’ve done everything else correctly.
Your chair and monitor are now optimised around maintaining a perfectly upright posture as you play. In your straight position, you have eliminated the pressure off your wrists and neck.
Most importantly, however, keeping your lower spine straight will prevent the permanent and visible damage that’s common among those with poor posture. With everything else optimised around sitting up straight, it’s only a matter of consciously reminding yourself not to start slouching.
Choosing the right chair, positioning your screen and consciously sitting up straight are three of the quickest ergonomics tips for your extended gaming sessions. Whether you’re climbing the leaderboards or questing through single player content, ergonomics will bring your gaming experience to the next level.