What Gamers Need to Know about Exercise

So you’re a gamer and you’ve made the decision to begin exercising. Well, you’re in the right place. Often times we make the decision to start exercising, open our internet browser, look up beginner’s guides on how to start exercising and….

Overwhelmed2

 

We become overwhelmed.

 

There is just too much information out there. We can hardly begin to decide which program we want to choose before being bombarded with the beliefs and methods of 100 different gurus.

There are countless articles out there describing the principles of exercise, gym vocabulary, theory behind the program and much more before describing the actual program. Don’t get me wrong, these are super important to understand.

But hey. Your exercise journey shouldn’t begin with a bunch of reading, it’s a learning process. It should start with minimal reading and more exercise. As you learn more about your body by actually exercising, that’s when your questions can be answered. This does not mean we avoid talking about the fundamentals, but we do our best to help get you started on a structured program as soon as possible.

In this article I want to simplify the process of starting an exercise program as well as walk you through what you NEED to know when it comes to exercise.

What do we need to know?

There are really only three basic things we need to understand prior to beginning an exercise program Exercise is about achieving your goals While there are some great programs out there I believe have it just right.. there is still one thing that seems to be missing from most. This is the one thing that should always be considered first.

YOU.

Programs need to involve you, the gamer… more specifically – your goals. What is it that you want out of exercise? Do you want to be stronger? Do you want to lose weight? Do you want to have more flexibility? Do you want better posture?

Establishing your goal will help us find the most appropriate plan for yourself. If you are more serious about gaming and pursuing a career in professional eSports, then one thing will be the same for most of you

  1. You want to prevent injuries
  2. You want to have better postural endurance and have bulletproof hands “forearms/wrists/hands”

But there’s more than that..

Building muscle, losing fat, getting RIPPED, getting that SIX Pack, improving performance, getting in shape, be healthier, benching your weight, running a 10k etc.

There are two ways to look at how to determine your fitness goals

Out of all of the fitness goals, they generally fall into either of these two categories.

The looks crew has the primary goal of improving the way their body looks

  • Build muscle, lose fat, do both, toned, 6 pack, look better naked

The performance crew has the primary goal of improving the way their body performs

  • Stronger, faster, more agile, better coordination, improved posture, etc.

Fitness Goals can also be specific or general

The specific crew has a clear goal of what they want to accomplish. Their goals are measurable, action oriented, realistic and time-sensitive. They are somewhat sure of how they want to achieve it.

  • They want to be able to perform 100 push-ups in 5 months

The general crew has an idea of what they want, but aren’t sure truly how to achieve it. And that’s okay. The motivation is always the first step

  • Building muscle, losing fat, moving better, becoming more healthy

Regardless of which category that you fall into, being as specific sets you up for more success. More thought is placed into your goal, meaning you become more mentally/emotionally/physically invested. This increases your chances of success. Goals give us focus, allows us to measure our progress (benchmarks in whatever you want to achieve – flexibility, strength, posture, weight loss, etc.) and provides motivation.

So I want you to ask yourself – What do you want to achieve with exercise?

Once you decide what it is that you want.. you can explore the programs near the end of the article.

So what’s next? Another crucial part of starting an exercise program is Identifying your Training Experience” This means whether you’re a beginner, intermediate, advanced or just noob at training. There tends to be a heavy distribution of noobs at the gym – which really hurts me. Establishing what level you are at allows you to identify what you are capable of and what type of program will work out best for you! Luckily, I’ll be doing all the thinking for you to design the program – you just need to know which group you belong in.

Noob

You are a noob when you know you should go to the gym, so you do. Unfortunately, you don’t have any plan so you work on your show muscles and what everyone else focuses at the gym (Upper Body) leaving you out of proportional with slow results

Beginner

Less than 6 months of  exercise, regardless of whether it is intelligent or not. There may be a general plan but no formal structure. A beginner has consistency, but no plan to achieve their goals.

Intermediate

Consistent for last 6 months with an INTELLIGENT program. This means a formal structure that takes into account the frequency, duration, muscle groups and volume.

Advanced

 Being advanced means having between 3-5 years of training or working out with a formal/intelligent program.

While I do want you to begin exercising as soon as possible, it is important to understand that..Form is the foundation to success with exercise!Proper form is important for injury prevention and targeting the correct muscles. But what does it mean to have good form?

It is one of two things:

ALIGNMENT

The first being alignment, meaning how you are positioning your entire body and the moving parts during an exercise. So for instance, when you are doing a squat, you don’t want your knees to fall inward.

Knee Valgus

NEUTRAL SPINE

The second component of form is assuming a neutral spine position. Maintaining this position allows for several benefits

  1. The muscles use the least amount of energy to most optimally stabilize the spine
  2. Positions the shoulders and hips for better movement in the (shoulder blade position is important in this as well, but that’s for another article)
  3. Less stress/strain is placed on the supporting ligaments/structures of the spine
  4. Maximizes your breathing capacity and improves overall circulation

To describe it simply – Neutral spine is maintaining the natural curves of your spine (upper, middle and lower,base)

Your Neck has a natural inward curvature (lordosis) NeutralSpine2
Your Mid-back has a natural outward curvature (kyphosis)
Your Lower-Back has a natural inward curvature (lordosis)

These all sit on the pelvis – which has a very mild outward curvature. The pelvis is the key to find the neutral spine position for your lower back while the neck and shoulders are the main facilitators to find the neutral spine position for your upper back

I go over the basic techniques on how to achieve the neutral spine position in my video below :Here’s an example of pashabiceps favorite exercise

NeutralSpine KyphosisProtracted
Compensating with the lower back – Risk for Low-Back Injury Neutral Spine Position (Lower and Upper Back) allowing for isolated and proper use of biceps to lift weight Excessive upper back curvature – Risk for Mid-Back Injury, Perpetuates poor posture

 

When exercises are done with the incorrect form, muscle imbalances can develop (this can also be a result of the program design) – leading to increased risk of injury! Also, improper form can put you in a position in which you may overstress tendons/ligaments.

So how do I get started?

Figure out what you want out of exercise! Then, once you’ve established your goal and what training level you are… you can get started with a GamerWOD program!

What are GamerWODs you ask? WOD stands for workout of the day and these are fun and simple workouts that you can do RIGHT NOW – in your room at home, without any gym memberships. The dream right?

In each of the links below, you will find a GamerWOD program that will help you achieve the specific goal listed. I recommend that everyone head over to the GamerWOD page first to understand the basic rules of the exercise system and for a special surprise.

  1. I want to have better overall fitness and health
  2. I want to be more flexible
  3. I want to have better posture
  4. I want bulletproof wrists/forearms for gaming
  5. I want to lose weight

Don’t forget to subscribe to my newsletter to find out when I release new programs and add to the list!

Have fun, and until the next post…Signature2

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