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How Does A Pro-Gamer’s Training Compare To A Professional Footballer?

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How Does A Pro-Gamer’s Training Compare To A Professional Footballer?

With esports a genuine global industry of substantial revenues, running both in parallel and right through the heart of the gaming world, you'd think that its ins and outs were fairly well known by now. But reader, let me tell you: esports is still viewed with uncertainty and suspicion by many a lover of games, and barely acknowledged at all by those with only a passing interest in these interactive playthings of ours.

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The BBC is shining a light on the pro-gaming world with its new Fight For First: Excel Esports documentary series - a BBC Three production split into five episodes, and available to watch right now on the iPlayer. As its title might imply, the series is focused on the fortunes of the British Excel team and its players, and is narrated by Peaky Blinders and Inception star Cillian Murphy.

Maybe the highs and lows of the League of Legends pro scene isn't of immediate interest to you - but what I discovered when I literally wrote the book on elite-level LoL five years ago (been waiting for a chance to say that ever since, haha) is that the players are so much more than well-paid young guys sat around some PCs for a few hours a day. They're genuine personalities (okay, not always big personalities), and what they go through to perform at their best might surprise you.

For one thing, they have to stay physically fit - as well as mentally strong and incredibly quick of reactions and decision making. If they're not competing or sleeping, or occasionally eating, they're training. Always, forever, training. And watching matches back, and learning, and running drills so that the learning goes in; and repeating it all, until they get it right.

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And Fight For First: Excel Esports shows just what an esports pro has to do to stay match fit, comparing the training regime of support-role League of Legends player Tore Hoel Eilertsen to that of professional footballer Chris Mepham, a centre-back at Championship club AFC Bournemouth and the Welsh national team. Neither of them gets out of bed as early as I do, to do this, and yes I thoroughly resent that.

Check out our exclusive clip of just that below - and watch all of Fight For First: Excel Esports on the BBC iPlayer, now.

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Featured Image Credit: BBC Three

Topics: League of Legends, Esports

Mike Diver
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