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Gaming Setup Ideas: 5 Ways To Play Longer

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Keeping your body comfortable is one of the keys to a great gaming binge. Nothing throws off your aim like a sore neck, tired wrist, or foggy brain. Get the most from your gaming sessions by optimizing your battlestation for extended play. In addition to gaming longer, you'll also get a healthier body, a pretty good bonus. Here are some great ways to level up your gaming setup.


1. Get A Gaming Keyboard



You probably already have one, but if you don't, one of the simplest ways to upgrade your setup is to get a gaming keyboard. Along with the functional and aesthetic enhancements gaming keyboards have (woo LEDs!), you'll also get a more comfortable playing experience, which will help keep your hands and wrists playing for hours.

It will take a little work, but gaming keyboards can be optimized for efficiency, reducing the amount of stress put on your muscles and tendons while you play. By leveraging customizable keys, you can assign specific keys to the game you are playing. Create macros to complete tasks that would usually take a ton of actions while easily changing keyboard setups for different games. By reducing the total actions & distance your hands need to cover, a gaming keyboard is step 1 to playing longer, and hopefully better...but no promises on that one.

Here are some keyboard options to consider. Mechanical keyboards are more accurate, give satisfying feedback, and last longer than membrane style keyboards. However, they tend to be more expensive.


Non-Mechanical (Membrane) Keyboards


For Budget Users: DBPOWER Gaming Keyboard

DBPower gaming keyboard



If you're looking for a budget gaming keyboard with entry-level customizations, this one is for you. Compatible with both PC & Macs, the DBPOWER keyboard a 4.3-star rating on 600 reviews. It's one of the best keyboards you can get for under $30.


Feature Rich Membrane Style: CORSAIR K55

COSAIR K55 gaming keyboard

Currently, the best selling gaming keyboard on Amazon is the CORSAIR K55. It's got all the bells and whistles you need to optimize your gaming experience including programmable macro keys and anti-ghosting. While it isn't mechanical, it has a more satisfying keystroke than traditional membrane switchboards. For $50, this is a good value if you don't need a mechanical keyboard to be happy.


Mechanical Keyboards



Entry Level Mechanical EagleTec KG010

For many of the mechanical keyboard benefits, without all the cost, check out the EagleTec KG010. It's got the custom switches you need and is compatible with both PC and Mac. While it's missing the top-end quality and durability of some keyboards, for $40 it's a solid mechanical gaming keyboard.


Cherry MX Mechanical Keyboard: CORSAIR STRAFE

COSAIR STRAFE gaming keyboard

My favorite mechanical gaming keyboard is the CORSAIR STRAFE with Cherry MX Brown key switches. It's tactile, not too loud, and has a sleek modern design. It is fully programmable so you can macro just about anything. Right now it is on sale for only $79.99 (down $30 from last year), which is a great value for this keyboard. If you've got the cash, definitely consider the STRAFE. There is a bit of a learning curve to program it, but you won't be limited like you will with cheaper keyboards.


2. Upgrade To An Ergonomic Mousepad



If you find yourself flexing and rotating your wrist to alleviate pain between rounds, check your grip. You want your wrist & hand in a neutral (straight) position as much as possible. If you arch your hand up to the mouse, you are putting strain on your muscles and will get sore. Mousepad wrist supports are an easy way to minimize joint stress. It'll prevent the dreaded claw grip on your mouse, and keep you raiding into the AM. If you already have a mousepad, wrist supports can be purchased separately and used with your current setup.


All In One Wrist Support Mousepad: Nekmi Memory Foam Mouse Pad

gaming wrist support

If you don't need a huge mousepad surface, this do-it-all combo is a good buy at $18. With just the right amount of support and rounded modern design, it'll help knock wrist soreness out of your gaming vocabulary.

This bad boy also comes with a wrist support for your keyboard. Your wrists will be so neutral, they might as well be from Switzerland, and that's a good thing.


Standalone Wrist Support: LingsFire Wrist Rest

Pair a wrist support with your existing mousepad for the cost of a round of beers. LingsFire support comes in 3 colors and does a great job keeping your hand and wrist aligned properly, particularly if you use a fingertip mouse grip. Note that it is more firm than some wrist rests, softness comes down to personal preference.


3. Train With A Gyroscopic Exercise Ball



gyroball for gaming


No, this isn't a typo. Strengthening your wrists and hands can help improve reflexes & keep you playing longer.

Gaming heavily relies on the muscles in your wrist and fingers. Strain from playing longer than an hour decreases responsiveness in your hands. You might not even realize it, but your play will slowly decline. Strengthening your hand and wrist muscles will not only improve reflex speed but will prevent exhaustion from setting in early in a gaming session. Nothing will get you booted faster than going AFK to apply Bengay like Kyle playing WoW...




And let's be honest, since you're not going to game for less than an hour, the best way to combat wrist & hand fatigue is by strengthening them. Don't worry about heading to the gym, pick up a gyroscopic exercise ball. You spin it in your hand and it progressively gains more speed and resistance. Fancier ones (like the one I picked up at CES) have lights that change color as your progress to different resistance levels. It adds a game element to strengthening your wrists that is better than how you're currently doing it...

Wincspace has a highly rated budget version of a gyroball that works great but has poor instructions. I'd recommend Googling specific exercises as it can train different muscles with different grips. If you want to be a gyro-baller like me, check out Pure Body Logix's gaming section.

While $50 is pretty steep, the EDGE Gyro has color changing LEDs that reflect the amount of resistance. Trying to chase the elusive mint-green (final level) is a fun challenge that will keep you coming back, and more importantly strengthening your wrists. Or you can go to Body Logix' booth at CES and fail at getting mint green so many times they just give you one to go away. It worked for me. I just couldn't advance past that damn purple!




4. Install A Gaming Monitor Mount



gaming monitor mounts

An often forgotten key to comfortable and extending gameplay is monitor position. Think about your current setup. Is your neck in a comfortable position? Do you have to look up or down at the screen? Is there an annoying glare? Does your monitor position make you hunch down? All of these can have negative effects on your gaming and your body. Monitor mounts are an affordable way to upgrade your battlestation. Easily position the monitors at the right height, and tilt to eliminate glare. It'll keep you upright and stop your slow transformation into a hunched over gargoyle. Your back and neck will thank you.

Look straight ahead at your monitor, ideally, your eyes should be focused 3/4 the way up the monitor. It will help reduce fatigue and keep you sitting up straight. No matter the height of your desk or chair, adding a monitor mount will let you get the perfect view, every time you play. This is especially useful if you have more than one gamer in the house. Everyone has a different viewing sweet spot, and most mounts are adjustable on-demand without tools. Just grab and reposition as needed.

It doesn't matter if you have 1, 2, or 3 screens, there is a monitor mount perfect for your situation. Not to mention you'll gain back desk space for your peripherals, like your new keyboard & mousepad. Monitor mounts attach to your desk via a wobble-free clamp or onto your wall, it is one of the easiest ways to upgrade your gaming setup. With cable managment and nearly unlimited adjustments, it'll put a professional finish on your rig.

We just released a line of gaming monitor mounts that includes everything from a single gas spring mount to a triple monitor beast. We'd love to hear what you think. Join our beta, take 20% off by using promo code ECHOBETA at checkout on Amazon or Echogear.com & be one of the first gamers to use an Echogear gaming mount. Check out our full lineup here, and feel free to reach out with any quetsions or suggestions to make them even better. We want to know what you think.

dual monitor mount for gaming



5. Sit Right With A Gaming Chair: GTracing E-Sports Chair



esports gaming chair


To complete your optimized gaming setup is a classic, the gaming chair. Pairing with a monitor mount will let you get the most benefit out of your perfectly placed monitors. High-backed gaming chairs have a myriad of benefits that can keep you playing longer. By perfecting your posture with support in all the right places, gaming chairs can help prevent health problems during years of extended gaming. They are specifically designed to increase blood flow to your legs compared to traditional computer chairs, which can keep your legs from falling asleep. If you are a serious gamer, getting a monitor mount & gaming chair is a great first step to keep your body healthy and your game strong.

Gaming chairs can get pretty expensive and more than the previous items come down to personal taste. Buying these online is tricky because you don't get to sit in them before buying.

I'll let you decide what the right amount is to spend, but for the money, GTracing Gaming chairs are the most heavily reviewed gaming chair on Amazon and are a really good value. They have the features and adjustments needed to maximize your playtime, plus multiple colors to match your style. Plus they look badass, which is always a win.

If you spend a lot of time gaming, keeping yourself comfortable is important for your quality of play & overall health. Any of the above are great solutions to common gaming problems. Let us know if you have other ideas to optimize gaming battlestations for comfort and extended play by commenting below.

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