The majority of bridge games have shifted to being online.
This doesn’t mean that health is any less important: Immune systems and health concerns don’t just kick in when you’re outside the front door, but should count just as much in the home – particularly in times when most of the world has been cautioned to isolate.
Here are 9 health tips for online card play.
1. A Smartphone and Your Health
Smartphones might interfere with medical devices such as hearing aids or pacemakers. Emergencies are rare, but there’s good reason why someone might choose to stop carrying their phone in their shirt pocket (or prefer to stop holding up a speaker to their hearing aid).
Most people don’t know about possible interference when they receive their devices – and you’re worried about this in the least, switch to accessing BBO through a PC instead and speak to your doctor about any further health-related concerns you might have.
2. Sanitize Your Screen
People touch the screen of their smartphones far more than they touch their toilet seats, and the screens get cleaned far less.
Sanitize any touch screens on a regular basis. It’s easy enough to keep a pack of wet wipes exclusively for screen cleaning, and it’s likely to save you a few times worth of getting the flu per year.
3. Don’t Dope at Home
An increase in online bridge games could mean that anti-doping regulations and rules are harder to monitor – and even harder to enforce.
Play bridge responsibly.
Doping is more likely to affect your health negatively than your bridge-playing ability in any positive ways.
4. Tips for Combating Arthritis
Arthritis can affect anyone at any age.
With the use of smartphones, we’re seeing repetitive stress injuries manifest in entirely new ways. An entirely new generation of people might be destroying their joint health as we speak just with the use of their smartphones.
See a medical professional where you start to experience any pain, swelling or stiffness in joints. Arthritis is likely (and in most cases, simple anti-inflammatory medications are enough to take care of the symptoms).
5. Why Take Breaks?
Most online activities can mean that it’s easier to lose track of the time. Have you ever had a gaming or movie marathon that turned into more hours than you were counting?
Always take regular breaks, whether you’re stuck on Bridge Base Online or Netflix.
Other than fatigue, staying stagnant for long periods of time can lead to an increased risk of inflammation and blood clots – and that’s among other health issues.
Every once in a while, get up and stretch. Your long-term health will thank you for it.
6. Watch Your Back
Bridge players should watch their backs – and in a very literal sense of the word.
Spinal health is one of the most important parts of how your body fits together. Online play and home isolation means that people are less bothered with their posture than if they were stuck anywhere else.
Signs of spinal degradation can include changes in posture, pain in the legs or hips, swelling and inflammation, sudden neck pain or headaches – and in some cases, physical curvature of the spine or degradation of the muscles and vertebrae keeping the spine together.
Experiencing pain or discomfort? See your doctor instead of screwing up your spinal health.
7. Brightness Set
It turns out that the majority of parents weren’t wrong in their cautions that sitting too close to a screen for long periods of time can be dangerous to your health.
Eye strain is a very real possibility while playing bridge. Players are encouraged to make sure their rooms are well-lit – and their phones are set to a level of brightness that doesn’t trigger pain, strain or discomfort in any way.
It’s worth repeating the same advice if you experience anything you’d call outside of normal for your health: See a doctor.
8. Healthy Eating
Healthy eating is sometimes just the right recipe or online food order away.
In the age of modern conveniences, there’s no excuse for unhealthy eating or snacking other than indulging the urge to do it.
Stick to a healthy diet and consult with a dietary expert (or look elsewhere online for designed diet plans) if what you’re eating now isn’t doing the trick.
If you’re struggling with appetite, ask a pharmacist about over-the-counter drug options to stimulate a natural appetite. A lot can be said for the practical usefulness of nutritional supplements such as Ensure where a diet has to be supplemented further.
9. Tablets versus Phones
I like to believe that tablets are a better option for most online bridge players than their smaller counterparts.
Tablets are still portable, but have the advantage of a larger screen and touch display. This is automatically easier for anyone looking to avoid eye or hand strain in the process of online card playing.
With a few clicks, tablets can be made to “cast” to a smart-TV for an even bigger view of the card table – and additionally, players can invest in a tablet stand so that there’s no need to hold up a heavy smartphone for a quick game.