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More Than Muscles: Japan’s First Esports Gym is Open

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Japan has led the world in the innovation of fun and interesting ideas. Tokyo is the hub for unusual things like internet cafes, Super Mario theme parks and now the world’s first esports gym.

Gaming has been a staple in Japanese culture since the 1980s. It has continued to gain even more popularity through the 2000s since the world has moved to online gaming. Of course, there is a chance for a lot of money to be made in the gaming industry, particularly at the pro level in esports. No longer is gaming just profitable for gaming companies, but it’s now become profitable for players.

There are many avenues from online gaming, from professional tournaments, streaming on Twitch and even Japanese online casinos.

What makes it an esports gym?

Together, Tokyo Metro and Gecipe Inc., a company that aims to educate and make esports accessible to anyone, have brought forth the Esports GYM. This location features 12 upgraded and fully-equipped desktop PCs, high back desktop chairs, a mouse, keyboard and headphones. Top gamers are on stand by to help hone players skill levels. Once an old spa, the gym has an open layout, with lots of plant life and natural light. It’s also close to the metro station.

Visitors can flex your gaming skills at the new gym with Valorant, League of Legends, Identity V, Rainbow Six Siege, and even Puyo Puyo esports. Initially, the esports gym was for working adults, high school and college students. Since it’s been open, it’s also seen a regular attendance of children aged 8-14. Anyone is welcome, no matter the age, to attend the gym and learn to play at a professional level.

There are no prerequisites for joining the gym, and Esports GYM often hosts free events. A session on August 1st educated parents and players how to care for their bodies and look after themselves while still enjoying gaming. There are tons of insightful tips, like gaming glasses to protect your eyes.

The price to play

They have memberships that you can pay for monthly, with the regular membership costing 5,500 yen per month. On this tier, you can place reservations daily for up to three hours of game time. The specialised course is double the price at 12,100 yen per month. It includes everything from the regular membership, but you also receive training from professional players twice a month.

Without a membership, you can test the waters and reserve a PC for three hours at a time. This is for a one-time payment of 1,430 yen.

If you take on the specialised course, you can become eligible for more. The gym holds tryouts once every three months. If you can prove yourself a top gamer, you could in theory join a professional team, where you may be able to compete and make a name for yourself in the esports world.

Regarding the future, Tokyo Metro and Gecipe want to expand their first location. They’re planning on opening more locations throughout Japan and across the world. Esports GYM says it wants to present the idea that anyone can succeed at doing what they love.

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Esports News UK

Esports News UK was established in late 2015, and features the latest stories, match reports, interviews and videos covering the UK esports scene. We predominantly focus on League of Legends but also cover other games like FIFA and Overwatch, as well as streamer articles and news from the wider gaming community.

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