Should we consider playing video games to be sport?

Even if you cannot call yourself a real gamer or may be you still have never played any video games or have not come across the one you really enjoy, you are certainly aware of multiple international competitions in video games. Certainly, this is an amazing way of bringing your passion for playing video games to the next level which can be called a professional one.

Still, the question of playing video games being regarded as a kind of sports is rather controversial. In this article we are going to explain several aspects of gaming which makes this activity similar to other types of sports, however, it does not mean you will be absolutely convinced by these arguments and might still have a different opinion about the nature of playing video games.

What is making sport sport?

Undeniably, in order to decide whether playing video games can be called sport, we should first decide what the features an activity should have in order to be regarded as sport.

It turns out that defining sport is not thus simple, yet there are certainly several things which are common for all kinds of sport. Let’s look at them together.

In all likelihood, the first thing you can associate sport with is an athletic ability combined with physical abilities. Definitely, these are crucial parts of any sport.

We also think about sport as about the activity which requires a lot of dedication and regular practice. Then, there come various competitions held in this particular type of sport which will let you to take part there and either win or lose. As a result, sport becomes a part of entertainment for the fans who enjoy watching sport events organised on fields, arenas and stadiums.

Finally, many educational institutions such as schools, colleges and universities allow their students to get a scholarship which will provide them with more opportunities for practising sport.

As you might have noticed, these criteria might be rather vague. Undoubtedly, it is obvious that football or baseball are absolutely one hundred percent kinds of sport. Then comes an entire variety of activities which can be regarded as sport, albeit it is debatable. It starts with various types of racing, includes poker and chess and can stretch even up to such activities as hot dog eating. Needless to say it depends on your own attitude, whether you yourself would like to add such an activity on the list of sports or not.

Now, let’s look at video gaming comparing it to the requirements we have mentioned above.

Athletic abilities

Let’s start with athletic abilities since sport is definitely about being athletic.

Obviously, video games will not let you develop thus complex athletic abilities as many other kinds of sport. Certainly, there is a gigantic difference between the athleticism of swimmers and video game players. Yet, there is one crucial athletic ability gamers have to develop if they want to be successful in playing and regular playing will actually let them do it. This ability is coordination.

Beyond a shadow of a doubt, for video game players coordination has a crucial role as they will need to synchronise their technique and perform particular movements exactly at the perfect time.

In addition to it, just like in any other kind of sport, gamers need stamina. One can get worn out while playing a video game just as easily as while playing any other sport game.

As you can see, even though the level of athletic abilities required by successful playing video games is not the same as the one needed for be an efficient sportsman of a different kind of sport, athletic abilities are still required for playing video games.

Physical abilities

If you have ever played any video game, you certainly know there are short bursts of repetitive physical movements such as pressing a button or using your joystick. Again, there is no sense in comparing these activities to the physical strain required by other types of sport, however, lots of your success actually depends on how effectively you are performing such simple physical movements and after an intense playing session, you might feel pain and weakness in your hand which will not allow you to play more for a particular time.


There is absolutely no doubt in the fact video games are competitive. No matter whether you are playing a video game against your friends, against real rivals at a competition or against your computer, the whole activity is still extremely competitive and completely relies on your urge to win.

This competitiveness of esports attracts a lot of attention of other people and as a result, some of the crucial competitions tend to gather more fans and viewers than some important sports events.

Dedication and practice

Undeniably, in order to become a successful gamer, you will need to practise just like with any other kind of sport. An overall good level of your health condition is also required for being more effective.