With gaming console Nintendo Wii’s initial release came reports of people hurting muscles and experiencing soreness due to the physical exertion caused by playing virtual games such as bowling, tennis and baseball. Apparently, that was just one side of the coin.
At first, Nintendo dodged the reports of injuries, saying the Wii was not meant to be an exercise tool. However, that hasn’t stopped people like Michael DeLorenzo from losing nine pounds in six weeks thanks to the Wii, according to Time magazine. DeLorenzo has a book deal in the works about his Wii Workout and he’s teamed up with Traineo.com, a social fitness networking site to feature his new regime.
Even more amazing is that the Wii is now being used by medical researchers to treat children who suffer from hemiplegic cerebral palsy, a condition that can paralyze one side of the body. The Wii is also helping others bounce back from illness.
Breast cancer sufferer Mary Jane Zamora was too tired to get off the couch, but her daughters brought over a Wii and together they played Wii Sports daily. Zamora has since become the most-improved player in her bowling league.
With studies showing that active videogames, such as the Wii and Sony’s EyeToy, can burn three times more calories than traditional games, Nintendo has since embraced the phenomenon. “This huge fitness craze was more than we anticipated,” said Wii spokeswoman Perrin Kaplan.
Perhaps now is the time for health and fitness experts to partner with Nintendo to develop more games geared toward getting players moving aerobically without realizing they are exercising.
Photo Credit: wii-family by dcodez