eSports On ESPN: Why Video Games Are Not Sports

eSports On ESPN: Why Video Games Are Not Sports

If all you do is sit down with a controller, it's probably not a sport.
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A couple nights ago, I was channel surfing at an ungodly hour of the night, looking for some background noise to fall asleep to. I had a great selection of blender infomercials and televangelists before getting to the sports channels. Or what I used to refer to as the sports channels. Because when my TV landed on ESPN2, it was not sports coverage I saw.

It was people live-playing video games.

Yes, on the Entertainment and Sports Programming Network, video games were being covered. Video games.

I don't mean to sound rude or talk down to gamers. Believe me, I like playing Xbox as much as the next 20-year-old college student and could probably sink a week straight into the N64, but I do that as a hobby, fully realizing that it takes no physical fitness or activity to be good at gaming or even play them.

Granted, ESPN airs other programming that isn't sports related (World Series of Poker is common and the occasional hot dog eating contest is quite puzzling), but this is uncharted territory for the sports network. 'eSports' as it is being called is one of the quickest growing markets in not only the sporting world, but the betting as well, meaning that this big money industry is probably just now reaching its potential with its full impact not being felt for a few years at least.This means ESPN is probably heavily invested in the industry, with more time slots across its multiple channels dedicating some time to the eSports world. eSports, unlike poker or eating competitions (which are usually only shown at a certain time of year or are shown as a one-off program), is becoming regular network content.

The biggest problem I have with that is its classification as a 'sport' at all. A sport is defined as 'an activity involving physical exertion and skill in which an individual or team competes against another or others for entertainment.' Video games do not require any physical involvement. Other than being good at pressing buttons on a controller, what physical ability do you need to play games? Yes, it takes a lot of skill, which is indicative of mental ability in some cases, to be a great gamer, but that's not physical and is certainly not a sport. If there is still an argument to define cheerleading as a sport, then how are we classifying this at all?

Gaming is not the same as playing a sport. Gamers are not athletes much the same way cashiers are not investment bankers. Sure both have a lot of money exchanged through their hands, but there is a very evident split where one ends and the other begins. So it is with gaming and sports. Play video games all you want, please, it is fun and can be very exciting. But to define it as any form of sport or athletic competition is a disservice to any athlete in any sport at any level.

Cover Image Credit: esports.net

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To The Girl Struggling With Her Body Image

It's not about the size of your jeans, but the size of your heart, soul, and spirit.

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To the girl struggling with her body image,

You are more than the number on the scale. You are more than the number on your jeans and dresses. You are way more than the number of pounds you've gained or lost in whatever amount of time.

Weight is defined as the quantity of matter contained by a body or object. Weight does not define your self-worth, ambition or potential.

So many girls strive for validation through the various numbers associated with body image and it's really so sad seeing such beautiful, incredible women become discouraged over a few numbers that don't measure anything of true significance.

Yes, it is important to live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, it is important to take care of yourself. However, taking care of yourself includes your mental health as well. Neglecting either your mental or physical health will inflict problems on the other. It's very easy to get caught up in the idea that you're too heavy or too thin, which results in you possibly mistreating your body in some way.

Your body is your special, beautiful temple. It harbors all of your thoughts, feelings, characteristics, and ideas. Without it, you wouldn't be you. If you so wish to change it in a healthy way, then, by all means, go ahead. With that being said, don't make changes to impress or please someone else. You are the only person who is in charge of your body. No one else has the right to tell you whether or not your body is good enough. If you don't satisfy their standards, then you don't need that sort of negative influence in your life. That sort of manipulation and control is extremely unhealthy in its own regard.

Do not hold back on things you love or want to do because of how you interpret your body. You are enough. You are more than enough. You are more than your exterior. You are your inner being, your spirit. A smile and confidence are the most beautiful things you can wear.

It's not about the size of your jeans. It's about the size of your mind and heart. Embrace your body, observe and adore every curve, bone and stretch mark. Wear what makes you feel happy and comfortable in your own skin. Do your hair and makeup (or don't do either) to your heart's desire. Wear the crop top you've been eyeing up in that store window. Want a bikini body? Put a bikini on your body, simple.

So, as hard as it may seem sometimes, understand that the number on the scale doesn't measure the amount or significance of your contributions to this world. Just because that dress doesn't fit you like you had hoped doesn't mean that you're any less of a person.

Love your body, and your body will love you right back.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Margliotti

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Stop Texting And Start Making Memories With Your Partner

You'll blink and your time together will be over.

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Technology is taking over our lives in this day and age. People use their phones for every aspect of their lives and they rely on them way more than they should. People act as if their phones are their lifelines.

They set reminders, the play games, track their food and exercise. You name it, you can probably use your phone for it. They have absolutely taken over everything so it's no wonder why people can't seem to take time away from them.

I will be the first to admit that I have an addiction to my cell phone. It is the first thing I see when I wake up and the last thing I see before I go to sleep. My boyfriend has an addiction to his as well. It's a problem. In any moment of silence, we check our phones or answer texts.

We get so focused on our phones that we will go hours without speaking to each other or making any noise at all. With the already limited time we have to spend together, we really shouldn't be worried about Facebook videos and Snapchat updates.

I hadn't really noticed it was a problem until my boyfriend pointed out that we go days at a time without having a real conversation. I scrolled through our texts and realized he was right.

We had been missing out on weeks of making memories and planning dates because we were too busy being in a committed relationship with our phones instead of each other.

Relationships are about balance and about making an effort to spend time together and make memories. It is about learning about someone so you can fall for them a million times. You can't make memories like that from behind your phone screen.

What happens when your phone dies and you don't have your phone charger? I'll tell you. You're stuck in awkward silence waiting for your partner to get off of their phone.

Or you sit in silence with your partner not knowing what to say or do because you have been treating your phones like lovers instead of each other. That's just painful.

You can't fall in love with your phone and the way that it has grown and changed over the years. Your phone can't hold you when you are sad. It can't take care of you when you are sick. It can't hold your hand in the car or make you laugh. So why choose it to spend time with over your partner?

Do you really want to look back on your relationship years from now and wonder why you don't have any memories? Or wonder why you can't remember anything you've done together?

No. No one wants that. So turn off your phone, put it on silent, hide it away and spend time making memories with the person you love that will last far beyond your phone battery. Trust me, you won't regret it.

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