For the study, Stakester tracked the heart rate and calorie burn of 50 gamers while they played FIFA and Warzone for two hours. Researchers discovered that male gamers burned an average of 210 calories per hour during an intense gaming session, which was similar to the number of calories they burned while performing 1,000 sit-ups. The results come after a 2020 study from the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) of 1,400 gamers from 65 countries. In it, they discovered that players are 21 per cent more likely to have healthier body weights than the average population. Contrary to public perceptions of gamers, the study found that esport gamers smoke and drink less than the general public and are significantly more active.
It’s not hard to believe and draws many similarities to the fat-burning properties of chess. In 2019, ESPN revealed the “grandmaster diet”, or what they deemed to be weight loss “while barely moving”. The publication found that for the world’s top chess players, their stress response was on par with what elite athletes experience, with sustained elevated blood pressure endured for hours being similar to that found in competitive marathon runners. “It all combines to produce an average weight loss of 2 pounds a day, or about 10-12 pounds over the course of a 10-day tournament in which each grandmaster might play five or six times,” Aishwarya Kumar wrote for ESPN.
As QUT esports researcher Michael Trotter explained, “The findings challenge the stereotype of the morbidly obese gamer. When you think of esports, there are often concerns raised regarding sedentary behaviour and poor health as a result, and the study revealed some interesting and mixed results.”