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I recently ran across a fascinating article in the most recent edition of the Journal of Orthopedic and Sport Physical Therapy (JOSPT). If you are not familiar this this journal, it is a popular publication in the outpatient sports and orthopedic physical therapy world. They cover a wide range of topics from unique sport case studies to intervention control trials to literature reviews.
So what was the unique article? It was about the need to begin to research and study the impact of mechanics and musculoskeletal injury in, none other than, E-Sports. That's right. Gaming. It is certainly an unconventional topic but as I began to read through the article it provided many fascinating statistics and legitimate arguments for exploring this largely unstudied arena of sport - if we classify gaming as a sport.
More Than a Game Article
In the article, the authors discuss some of the mind blowing statistics around esports including the billions of dollars of revenue and millions of viewers for esport events. It really is fascinating. They then go on to detail that this may be an untapped patient population for physical therapists because of growing musculoskeletal injury reports related to repetitive movements and static postural changes. The authors highlight that there is not much research but that maybe we should begin to explore this field further because it could really impact our profession.
So it got me thinking about you in your clinic. Have you seen patients who participate in esports in your practice? Is this a trend you have noticed in your clinic and, if so, have you identified any patterns of esport injury?
I hope you get a chance to peruse through this article just because it is interesting and my be somewhat prophetic in the trends of sport. Who knew that esport would begin to compete with traditional sport and require the skill of physical therapists!