Physical Fitness VS. Reaction Time in E-sports. : A Design of an Experiment.

University essay from Blekinge Tekniska Högskola/Institutionen för datavetenskap

Abstract: Background: E-sports is a grand industry and has been gaining momentum in the latest decades. Reaction time (RT) is an important part of most e-sports games and therefore a possible way to evaluate and improve RT is desired. A tool that evaluates the players and shows them what executive functions they should improve on through what physical activity would be a great way to evaluate and improve RT. There has been a lot of studies performed on the effects of physical fitness on RT. Most studies seem to agree that improved physical fitness results in improved RT.   Objectives: The aim of this thesis is to design an experiment that will evaluate the connection between e-sports players physical fitness, their RT and their executive functions through different tests. There will also be an evaluation of if it is possible to reliably find a connection between specific kinds of physical fitness and specific executive functions. The objectives are therefore to find suitable tests to evaluate RT and executive functions as well as finding a physical fitness test that allows for easy comparison between subjects.   Methods: Literature study is used to find the answers to the research questions through reading different studies and papers. Scopus was chosen as the database to find the different studies to read because of the vast amount of material available there.   Results: The test used to evaluate physical fitness will be the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT). The tests that will evaluate RT and executive functions are the Stroop test, the Trail Making Test A & B, Tower of Hanoi and a variation of the n-Back test. It is very difficult to isolate executive functions and evaluate them without something else interfering with the results. This thesis’s hypothesis changed from the beginning of the research to that it was done. At first it was believed that executive functions could be isolated and evaluated separately, but that is no longer the case.   Conclusion: The experiment will most likely show that subjects with greater APFT score will achieve a better overall score on the RT tests than those with lower score. This experiment will most likely not work as a tool to evaluate the executive functions connection to specific physical exercises of e-sports players in the state that the experiment is currently envisioned. More studies are required to link specific physical exercises to specific executive functions before a tool can be created.

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