Growing mental and physical health issues have been a growing concern in the esports and video games industry for some time now.
Unregulated training sessions and the constant stress of performing on stage tend to take a toll on both the physical and mental condition of esports athletes.
Clash Royale professional player, Karan “Jin Kazama” Manganani, has often been vocal about the importance of mental and physical health in the industry. In a conversation with Sportskeeda Esports' Abhishek Mallick, Karan opens up about some of the steps that esports athletes and content creators can take to prevent some of the known health concerns prevalent in the industry.
Here is an excerpt of the conversation.
Q. Mental and physical health for an esports athlete is often overlooked. Their health concerns are often trivialized due to the lack of awareness of some of the negatives that the esports and video games industry can bring with it. What would you suggest would be a great way to spread awareness about the concerns that esports athletes face today?
Karan: Esports is one of the fastest emerging sectors in recent times, and the new emerging cult also brings some unnoticed problems and issues along with it. The common issues such as physical and mental disorders are also seen in professional esports athletes due to countless hours of training which are not kept in regulation.
Personally, I focus on all aspects of life apart from esports, mental and physical health being the top priorities. I’ll suggest esports enthusiasts follow a good regime of physical and mental exercises, Yoga being the best one.
Q. What are some of the major mental and physical health issues that both PC and Mobile gamers face today?
Karan: If I had to name some major disorders which are faced by both PC and Mobile players then they will be:
1. Eyesight problems due to being in front of the screen for long hours.
2. Misalignment of fingers due to lack of proper care.
3. Decreased thinking power due to fewer amounts of sleep and rest.
4. Lack of a social circle in the real-world due to no exposure at all.
Q. What are some of the best ways to counteract some of the health problems that come from being extensively involved with the esports and video games industry?
Karan: The best ways, in my opinion, to counter these physical and mental problems in young players can be:
1. Keeping a proper regulation on the number of hours spent every day.
2. Monitoring the attitude and behaviour of players, since swearing is common nowadays due to ample streamers using it in the name of entertainment. It shouldn’t have a massive impact on these players, turning them into toxic individuals as a whole.
3. Players should focus on balancing everything and should take health more seriously than anything else; a few minutes of workout, jogging, yoga every day can help them remove these instances substantially.
Q. What are some of the routines that you have incorporated into your daily life, to keep yourself mentally and physically fit?
Karan: Over the course of years, while participating in many tournaments along with winning them at the same time, I have always kept myself disciplined and regulated in these aspects.
I am following my fitness routine every day since the last 4 years. I take regular breaks during my practice hours to keep my mental strength intact.
Since I completed my graduation this month only, I was also occupied with studies, and I have developed the habit of reading novels, which has helped me immensely over the years and they still do.
I would suggest all young aspirants not give up other aspects of life just to play for the whole day in the name of the practice. everyone should focus on smart work, not hard work.
Q. What role do you feel today’s content creators and video game personalities should play in spreading awareness on mental and physical health issues in esports and video games?
Karan: As the content creators of this industry have the biggest influence on these kids, they should first focus on improving themselves holistically, not just for faking it.
Toxic behavior must be reduced, if not eliminated, by these creators and role models, since a lot of kids learn and get influenced by them. I know that in the fit of rage the swearing and toxicity can come out unintentionally, but these creators and role models should train their mind to keep this in control.
Along with this, they should also promote physical fitness through their social media handles. Even if they are not into it, they can put out positive posts to create a good influence on youngsters.