It’s easy to dismiss esports players as second-rate to conventional athletes. While it’s true that the average esports pro doesn’t need to be in peak physical condition, there’s still plenty of preparation involved before tackling a tournament or major fixture. If you’re looking to establish yourself as a big hitter on the esports circuit, you’ll need to pay almost as much attention to physical and mental conditioning as you do to skills behind the keyboard or controller.
Practice Makes Perfect
This should be the first thing any esports player considers before a big tournament. You’ll need to be at your playing peak to stand any chance of outdoing the competition at a professional level. If your game of choice is a single-player title, training is far easier to keep on top of. If you’re playing a cooperative title, training schedules can be a little trickier to balance with everyday life. In both cases, you’ll want to pencil in plenty of time with an esports coach. How much time you commit to training every day ultimately depends on the game.
Physical Fitness is Important
More esports professionals than ever are turning their attention to physical fitness and conditioning levels. One of the most important things you’ll need to focus on is endurance. After all, the average League of Legends tournament fixture can last up to 8 hours. If you don’t have the stamina reserves to hold out for this long, you’re not going to be much use to a team looking to take home the top prize.
Nowadays, endurance training is a crucial component of any esports training regimen. Targeted physical condition is also vital. In the case of esports professionals, things like hand-eye coordination, good posture, and well-developed wrists and forearms are incredibly important. You only need to follow the current CSGO schedule here to see how the current line-up of stacks up against the gaming stars of yesteryear.
For best results, esports players will need to commit to a healthy eating plan. To maintain peak fitness, a balanced diet needs to be observed. However, the food you consume before a tournament also needs to be considered. High-energy foods that can provide an immediate boost are the preferred option. Many teams forgo a heavy meal before a tournament as this can lead to indigestion and distract play. Instead, nutrient-rich smoothies loaded with leafy greens and fruits that keep blood sugar levels steady are the way to go.
Mastering Mental Preparation
Achieving a winning pregame mindset is another thing you’ll need to master if you plan on going pro. Mindfulness exercises are particularly useful for esports players. Integrating mindfulness practice into a pregame ritual is fairly straightforward. In fact, simple breathing exercises can help achieve the desired state. These exercises are incredibly useful for improving focus during high-stakes situations, making them ideal for esports players who need to stamp out distractions and zone in on a single objective.
Esports players also need to anticipate every eventuality. Before a big game, individual players and teams will need to consider different scenarios that might arise in the middle of a match. Players need to be able to respond in rapid time, so it’s vital they have a reflexive repertoire to call upon.