Improving your gameplay by making real life changes
Mind over body or the other way around?
It is a known fact that the physical affect the mental. If you are in good shape, your brain actually works better, it gets more oxygen, you can often think, react and reason at a much faster speed than if you are in bad shapes. This is a little bit along the line of how fuzzy your brain feels when you are hung over, or when you have the flu. Your body is affecting how functional and effective your brain is. For this reason, you can actually improve your gameplay by making some small and easy changes to your life.
Why the Pros are Pros
When you play League of Legends you are depending on many things to improve. One thing most pro players have in common is that they have excellent muscle memory (this is like how you always use Flash on the same key, and if you are used to it on F and change it to D you keep flashing every time you want to ignite/teleport/exhaust/heal). You will build up muscle memory simply by playing and practicing. But, most pro players also have excellent reflexes. It is a known fact that playing certain video games can improve your reflexes, but did you know that going for a run or a walk in the woods will also help tremendously?
In this image you can see that the average reaction time for most players is 0.3 seconds. You can also see that the average reaction times decrease the higher you go in ranking, meaning if you have quick reflexes, you can get higher on the ladder.
Improving your reflexes
Run in the woods - You can start with a walk, then work up to a slow jog. Once you start running through the woods your reflexes will improve by leaps and bounds. This is because the uneven footing through the trail, the roots and rocks and dirt in your way will force you to dodge and it forces your body react quickly. The more often you do this, the quicker your reflexes will get.
Play with a reaction ball – A reaction ball is a 6 sided rubber ball that bounces at unpredictable angels. Throw, bounce and catch the rubber ball for 5-10 minutes a day. If you don’t have a reaction ball you can use a normal rubber ball (a bounce one) but they don’t work as well.
Play games that require you to act fast - These sort of games can be shooting games, League of Legends to a point, fast RTS (real time strategy) games etc.
How to eat your way to a higher ranking in LoL
Funnily enough, food can have a huge impact on how well you play. Foods that consists of a lot of refined sugars and trans fat can make you feel sluggish and delay your reflexes when you play. It can be the difference between getting a kill, avoiding a gank or flashing a skillshot that would kill you. For your brain to function on the optimal level, you need to make sure you are getting enough proteins (the healthy kind preferably – if you don’t like a lot of food, get a proteinshakes that is 80% or more pure whey proteins and have 1 a day), you also need complex carbohydrates and healthy fats.
Certain foods also increase your cognitive function, making your brain work more efficiently. These types of foods include whole foods like nuts, fish, berries, greens and garlic. You should also be sure to drink a lot of water and stay hydrated. Certain vitamin supplements can also be added, vitamin B12, Vitamin C and omega 3 all have been linked to better cognitive functions and reaction times.
Sleep right and climb the ladder
Make sure you get a good nights sleep, especially if you are going to play LoL the next day.
According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), a good nights sleep helps improving your reflexes and make you perform on a higher level. If you are tired or sleepy, your brain slows down and so do the rest of you.
Fitness - Annoying but true
You can be a great gamer without being fit, but the general rule is: If you are fit, you will improve. Meaning, if you and I have the same skill level and we are both equally unfit, and you start exercising and getting fit, you will become better than me. This means, if you exercise you will actually perform better in LoL. One of the reasons for this is that when you are unfit, you spend more energy on everything you do, and lack of energy causes poor concentration, slower reflexes and a generally worse mood. When you exercise your respiratory system is able to absorb more and more oxygen, which in turn brings travels to your brain faster and more often, which helps you with concentration, reflexes etc.
Now, not everyone has the time to exercise everyday, and many of us are lazy bastards (we are gamers after all) but if you want to take a small step in the right direction do a 15-20 minute walk every day, and slowly build up speed. Day one can be a slow stroll, while day 20 can be a fast, brisk walk.
TL;DR: Eat healthier, work on improving your reflexes and do a little exercise every day and you will see improvements in all things in life, especially in LoL.
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