“Popping off” is the physical expression of extreme emotion during esports competition. This basic phenomenon should be familiar enough to non-professional gamers, though perhaps only the elite among us can dislocate a shoulder in the act, as seen this past weekend at the Riptide fighting game tournament in Sandusky, Ohio. A competitor who goes by the handle “CakeAssault” popped a shoulder clean off after he won a 245-person Rivals of Aether event. Poor CakeAssault briefly writhed on the floor in pain as people cheered his victory.
CakeAssault later confirmed the injury.
You’ll find no condescension toward this gamer from this post’s author—who once pulled a hamstring while playing Halo 2 (local co-op) at a level well below world-class—just encouragement to add some strength and mobility routines to offset those uncountable hours of gremlin posture. This isn’t an isolated incident in the profession. Bizarre celebration-induced injuries aren’t unheard of in meat-sports, either. It has happened to Lamarr Houston and Bill Gramática. It can happen to CakeAssault, too.