A German gamer broke his neck while wearing a VR headset, but not because he fell while playing.

Instead, doctors say the 31-year-old, who was playing up to four hours a day, sustained the injury due to his ‘repetitive’ and ‘intense’ movements. Doctors say the repeated strenuous motions wore down one of the vertebrae in his neck, causing it to eventually break.

Experts at Leipzig University Hospital, who treated the man, believe this is the world’s first documented virtual reality-related stress fracture. Detailing the case in a medical journal, the team wrote that the unidentified man’s injury resembled those seen in runners and soldiers.

The man went to hospital after experiencing sharp pain in his shoulders while playing. Doctors did not reveal what game he was playing, but said it required her to move his body to “rhythmic visual and musical triggers.”

X-ray scans then revealed that the man had fractured his C7 neck vertebra, which is located near the base of the neck above the shoulders.

The man needed to wear a type of neck brace for six weeks to support his neck while it healed and made a full recovery after 12 weeks.

Headsets are becoming an increasingly popular piece of equipment among gamers, with millions of them sold in both the UK and US in recent years.

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