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Tuesday, April 15, 2008

PostHeaderIcon Videogames Keep Olympic Shot-Putter Busy

Reese Hoffa

Videogames play an important role in Olympic shot-putter Reese Hoffa's training, but not the way you might think.

Considered a favorite to win the gold medal for his sport at the Beijing Olympics in August, Hoffa doesn't play games to increase his stamina, his reaction time or even his hand-eye coordination. Instead, he retreats to the "man cave" above his garage and plays videogames to keep from hurting himself.

"For almost two years I had to keep my skateboarding habit a secret from my coach," explains Hoffa (pictured above). A quick trip to the skate park could easily result in an injury that might prevent Hoffa from maintaining his position as the top-ranked shot-putter in the world. "I'm a really active guy, so I use gaming to keep me busy, just not physically," says Hoffa.

Although he's a devoted gamer, Hoffa hasn't made the jump to next-gen systems yet. "Once I find four games on the next system that I really like, then I'll buy the system," he says. "The PS3 is a little bit newer system, so there's not quite as many cool games for it yet."

He may change his mind when Metal Gear Solid 4 is released, however. Hoffa says the series' blending of story with gameplay is what makes him such a huge fan.

"It's amazing how they can keep that Metal Gear story going. When that game came out, there was nothing that could compare with it. I still play it. It just never gets old," he says.

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