Does gaming make you a better athlete?

Posted in the Advice category    Apr 8, 2019

So the other day…

I was training Josh, one of my younger clients (well, he’s 12!)

Josh and his Dad come to see me to keep fit and keep weight off respectively. Josh likes his football, but he also likes his video games. During the session, he asked me about an article he’d read. The article was about the relationship between gaming and reflexes and coordination in sports.

He told me that the article said you that there’s proof that playing video games can increase your sporting prowess by helping a) speed up reflexes, and b) improve coordination and tactics. One thing sprung to mind… Who’s funding this article! (😂)

But mostly I tried to give my opinion. A fast-paced game, like for instance call of duty, must make your brain work at a very high capacity. There’s so much going on and you have to make quick tactical decisions on the go, much like a football game!

So taken in a literal sense, you could make the argument that it would improve that portion of your game.

However…

What’s the most important ability with any sport? What do you typically associate with sportsmen and women? Fitness, right? They’re usually incredibly fit, and strong! If I had to choose one ability to allow me to stand out as a footballer over the rest, I would want to be the fittest and fastest!

This is what I tried to explain to Josh. To always keep in mind what’s going to yield the biggest results, and if you know what that is, do more of that!

Here’s how that relates to us… I constantly get asked questions like this from clients such as yourself.

“I watched a youtube video and the guy said I should take a protein shake 15 minutes after my workout, any later and I’m losing the benefit”

“I just read that you shouldn’t eat carbs after 8 pm, apparently my body won’t process them while I’m asleep”

I love it when my clients go out and research things to improve their understanding, and I promote it. But if I’m trying to lose weight and get fit, neither of those pieces of advice is going to help me (nor are either of them true, but that’s a tale for another time!). No, what’s going to truly help me is:

  • Controlling my portions/calories
  • And thinking ahead, preparing what I’m going to eat tomorrow
  • Staying active and making my training sessions
  • Keeping hydrated

Always look to better yourself, but keep things in context, don’t let articles cause you confusion!

Have a great week.

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