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International Day of Yoga 2021: India's leading esports athletes highlight significance of Yoga in their lives

New Delhi, June 21: The esports community can't ignore the constant pressure they go through and the long hours of dedicated playing schedules are no joke. Maintaining good health is important for esports players too. As the world observes International Yoga Day on Monday (June 21), some of India's top esports players share their views on the importance of yoga in their lives.

Abhinav Tejan, one of India's top player in Tekken7; Karan Manganani, the best Clash Royale player in India; and Moinuddin Amdani, the leading player in PES 2020 spoke about the well-being of esports athletes and how Yoga can help to achieve it, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic scenario.

All these esports heroes are winning laurels for the country and are setting the bar high and aspiring many more youngsters to take up esports professionally.

Highlighting the importance of Yoga for esports athletes, Abhinav Tejan - the current national esports champion in India - said: "After the pandemic outbreak in our country last year, the esports athletes are playing more than the usual timing as we all are stuck in our houses. But, since we don't want to part ways with our controller, mouse, mobile and keyboard we need a more, let's say, easily acquired solution which takes care of our mental and physical well being during these tough times. The best thing about Yoga is that you can take it upright in the comfort of your own living room.

"Yoga might not only help improve the state and condition of your body and mind but also improve your gaming ability. Yoga is a form of workout which helps relieve stress and focuses on the use of breath in order to balance your body and calm your mind. As we can't be able to go to gyms or any sports centre, we should make Yoga our everyday regime," adds Abhinav - who held the first position in Dreamhack Delhi 2018 and 2019. He finished third at SEA Major TWT 2018, fourth at IESF 2018 Kaohsiung, and ninth at EVO Japan 2020.

According to another prominent esport athlete in the country Karan "jin kazama" Manganani, being glued to the screens takes a toll on an athlete's physical and mental health and the gamers also face issues related to their spine, neck and fingers due their profession and Yoga helps them a lot to keep such problems at bay.

"Esports gamers spend most of their day (10-13 hours sometimes) glued to their screens which takes a toll on their physical and mental health. Gamers usually have spine-related issues, their fingers are constantly stressed, and their neck and shoulder take a lot of pressure due to their profession. Esports athletes need to keep a check on their health, both physically and mentally and Yoga is a great way to help them, especially when we are confined at home.

Practising even simple Yoga exercises for the upper body can give great results. It also has the ability to relieve stress as players are constantly exposed to the virtual setup which tricks the mind. I personally rely on Yoga to support my well being."

In 2018-20 Clash Royale, Karan ranked one in CRL Combine Phase 1. In the CRL Combine Main Event, held in Los Angeles, he ranked in the top 10. He's also the Asian Games 2018 National Champion and Asian Games 2018 Regional Champion in South Asia. Karan has won several accolades in tournaments across the globe.

Another big esport athlete in India Moinuddin Amdani, a two-time national champion, and a runner up in PES 2017 tournament at IGX, also believes that Yoga being a guiding light and meditation being an inventory, can easily help one improve their game.

Amdani, who represented India at the 2019 World Championship, said, "Every esports athlete is giving extra time in their gaming after this pandemic outbreak, which forced everyone to be confined within the four walls of their homes. Virtual reality is so lifelike that it can drastically affect one's mind and personality. Yoga can play a role of catalyst for mental and physical well being, not just for gamers but for everyone.

"With Yoga as your guiding light and meditation as your inventory, one can easily improve their game. Practising Yoga and meditation regularly will help you stay fit, keep calm through gaming competitions and make your mark in the virtual world!"

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Story first published: Monday, June 21, 2021, 15:56 [IST]
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