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Perceptual-Cognitive Demands of Esports and Team Sports: A Comparative Study

Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC,volume 1358)

Abstract

Video game competitions known as “esports” are rapidly gaining popularity around the world. Esports is legally recognized as a sport in several countries. It was a demonstration event at the 2018 Asian Games and was discussed as a potential addition to the Olympic program at the 2018 Esports Forum, organized by the International Olympic Committee. Even so, the status of esports remains a highly disputed topic in academia. In this paper, we argue that to be promoted as a full-fledged sport esports has to be associated with talents and health benefits similar to traditional sports. Existing studies indicate that traditional team sports and amateur gaming are both related to cognitive advantages. To evaluate the extent of this similarity at the professional level, we assessed perceptual-cognitive abilities of (semi-)professional esports players (N = 31) and professional soccer and basketball players (N = 43). Esports players and athletes performed equally well in complex tests measuring attentional control, short-term and working spatial memory span, attention distribution, reaction time, and hand-eye coordination. Esports players outperformed athletes in the speed of visual search. This data supports the idea that esports and traditional team sports demand a similar level of perceptual-cognitive ability from professionals and might provide similar cognitive benefits.

Keywords

  • Esports
  • Video games
  • Competitive gaming
  • Perceptual-cognitive skills
  • Multiple object tracking
  • Visual attention
  • Sport psychology

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Acknowledgement

The authors declare that the research was conducted in the absence of any commercial or financial relationships that could be construed as a potential conflict of interest.

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Correspondence to Alyona Grushko .

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Grushko, A., Morozova, O., Ostapchuk, M., Korobeynikova, E. (2021). Perceptual-Cognitive Demands of Esports and Team Sports: A Comparative Study. In: Velichkovsky, B.M., Balaban, P.M., Ushakov, V.L. (eds) Advances in Cognitive Research, Artificial Intelligence and Neuroinformatics. Intercognsci 2020. Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing, vol 1358. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-71637-0_4

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