You’re right in the middle of your favourite video game. Your bros are counting on you to take the final shot, and your fingers start to tingle and they feel numb, you cannot execute. Whaaat!

Photo by Cláudio Luiz Castro on Unsplash

If you are a die-hard gamer who loves to play casino slots for example, you know you can get carried away and so immersed in the game until your fingers hurt. The above experience is not new to you then. 

Frequent exercise and stretching can help to prevent injury. You can be healthier, level up, and avoid stiffness and carpal tunnel or gamer’s thumb by simply adding a few movements to your video game sessions. 

Your fingers and wrists are an essential part of playing video games, and constant repetitive movements can stress them. This could cause pain and injury or cramps over time. There are a host of stretches you can do before, during, or after playing a video game. 

We have a few examples for you here: 

Prayer Position Stretch

  • Press your fingers and palms together as if you are about to meditate or pray. Your fingers should be pointed upwards, and your elbows pointed outward. 
  • Hold this stretch for a count of 30.
  • If you want to increase the intensity of this stretch, lower your hands while keeping your elbows in their original position. 
  • You can also modify this stretch by doing it in reverse and pressing the backs of your hands together with your fingers pointed downwards and your elbows outward. 

Supine Flexors Stretch

  • Begin with your right arm straight and your palm facing upwards.
  • Use your left hand to pull your fingers downwards. This stretches your palm and one side of your forearm.
  • Hold this stretch and count to 30.
  • Repeat with the left arm.
  • You can modify this stretch (Pronated extensors stretch) by facing your palm downwards and pulling your fingers downwards to stretch your wrists and the other side of your forearms.

Thumb Adductor Stretch

  • Extend your right arm forward, with your elbow straight. 
  • Your palm should be facing in front of you with your fingers pointing upwards.
  • Use your hand to pull your thumb downwards and backwards toward you. Do this stretch gently and slowly; pulling too hard could cause injury. 
  • Hold for a count of 30.
  • Repeat with the left side. 

If you really want to get a workout in, there are a few body exercises that you can do without breaking a sweat:

Ab squeezes

This exercise strengthens your core and helps with good posture. All you need to do is sit with your back straight, squeeze your upper and lower stomach in, hold for a count of 10, then release. Sitting for hours on end can cause backaches and an inactive core which is vital for maintaining good posture.

Wall sit

Another good exercise for your core is a wall sit. Challenge yourself by doing a wall sit while the video game loads or while you wait for your friends to hop on for your online gaming session. 

  • Put your back flat against the wall with your knees bent as if you are sitting on a chair. 
  • Make sure your knees are over your ankles and that your feet are shoulder-width apart.
  • Hold. You only need to do this for 30 seconds to a minute at a time, but if you can manage more, great!

Controller Figure Eights

For this exercise: 

  • Extend your arms forward with the controller in hand.
  • Move the controller with both your hands and draw the infinity sign or the figure 8, making sure that you draw a full 8 from hip to hip. 
  •  For more intensity, lift your legs an inch above the floor and repeat. 

You might not manage to do all these exercises for long the first few times you try, but eventually, it’ll become more manageable as your core strength increases.