The digital era has begun and is on the move. Well, actually, it began a long time ago. With it, many things have changed in our ways of working, communicating, shopping and entertaining. But in this article, we will focus on a particular thing that calls to our attention: sports. While conventional sports as we know them still exist, a new way of sport has appeared. Now, is it correct to consider e-sports a type of sport?
According to the definition of the word “sport”, e-sports should not be considered one. However, other disciplines do not comply with this definition and are officially recognized as part of the sports industry. The debate is deeper than it seems and should take several factors into account.
Whether it is as a hobby or at a competitive level, many people nowadays play e-sports in their homes or representing an entity or club. Competitions, tournaments, and amateur contests are constantly in process. This new digital giant is overcoming and setting new rules within the sports industry. Keep on reading and see why we should or should not consider e-sports a type of sport.
E-sports is the name for competitive online gaming. Through different platforms created by digital companies, players test their skills in a cooperative or solo mode against other players or teams. E-sports englobes all platforms, such as mobile, pc, or console gaming. Players participate in games that are divided into categories, the most popular of them being Player vs. Player (PvP), Real-Time Strategy (RTS), FPS (First Person Shooter), and MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena).
Different entities support and represent high-level competitive players. Clubs, brands, and other organizations recruit, sponsor, and fund their players’ training and performance. They pay salaries to players, coaches, and staff while receiving publicity and recognition in exchange. The organizations or companies which create the games also organize regional and world championships with prizes that scale – and keep on scaling every year – to millionaire figures.
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So far, and following the above brief definition of an e-sport, they look pretty much like any other sport. So, as regards organization, we may say that we should include e-sports in a sports category. Furthermore, it takes a lot of skills to become a competitive e-sports player, whatever the discipline. Reflexes, strategic thinking, memory, and statistics are some of the results of hours of training in front of the screen.
As a plus, there is a precedent of a discipline that became part of the sports world without implying any apparent physical exercise. In the year 2000, the International Olympic Committee recognized chess as a sport. This led to over 100 countries worldwide considering it as such from then on. Their main fundamental to counterpart lack of physical activity objected that chess players need to stay in shape to withstand long hours of mental effort.
Following this principle, electronic sports are very similar to chess. Apart from what we stated before, players participate in intense competitions that require long hours of concentration, teamwork (if such is the case), and tactical formation.
On the other hand, there is a counterpart that claims that we should not include electronic sports in a sports category. Their argument is quite valid, stating that organization alone does not transform an activity into a sport. Imagine cooking becoming a sport because of the wide variety of cooking competitions that exist now on T.V. Crazy as it may sound, it does make sense.
Moreover, those who think e-sports should not be taken as sports also claim that the obligation or necessity for players to stay in good shape is also not enough. Modeling, for example, requires good shape and healthy nutrition. Should we think of it as a sport too, then? These are valid points brought up by people every time this discussion appears. And, even though the name “e-sport” includes the word, this argument will continue to exist until an entity, as It happened with chess, favors either side.
Whether e-sports fulfill the requirements to become a sport or not is a tricky question. In the meantime, competitive – and non-competitive – players continue to generate income at a fast pace. It seems that little by little, the scale may incline to one side more than the other. However, no official announcements have occurred yet, and the topic remains unclear. What is your opinion? Do you play some kind of e-sport? Remember to subscribe to our newsletter to keep in touch with all kinds of updates and tips! Thanks for reading!