Nintendo Wii has Little Effect on family fitness

16th December 2009

Last Christmas, the Nintendo Wii was the top selling games console, outselling the likes of the XBOX 360 and Sony’s Playstation 3.

One of the biggest selling points of the Wii is the fully interactive gaming experience, which allows the game player to control the game using the motion sensitive controller. If you’re playing tennis, you’d swing the remote like a racket, if you’re fighting zombies, you use the remote as a weapon. The game play is innovative, exciting and fresh.

One of the most popular games for the Wii is the ‘Wii Fit’, which shows off the interactive game play even more, by providing the player with a ‘Balance Board’ that they use in the game. The Wii Fit offers the gamer a vast selection of games; including yoga, running and hula hooping, relying on pressure that the gamer applies to the balance board when stood on it.

Contrary to popular belief, researchers have found that the Wii has very little effect on fitness. Enticing users to live a healthier lifestyle, weighing the gamer every time they step up on to the board, the users of the game are shocked to discover that the Wii will not help them lose weight, become fitter nor lower the risk of heart disease.

Although studies show that young children displayed a ‘significant increase in aerobic fitness after three months of use’ the report also indicated that there were ‘no significant changes in daily physical activity, muscular fitness, flexibility, balance or body composition for the family as a whole.’

If you were planning to buy a Wii for Christmas in order to shift those mince pies, it might be smarter to go for a run afterward.