Are Sports Video Games Real Workouts?

Are you wondering whether the last tournament of Nintendo Wii bowling caused any actual burning of the calories?  This is a very common question that has made many people to engage in many different studies so as to find out the truth about the issue.  The Nintendo Wii system of gamming was release in the year 2006.  Its effectiveness or otherwise on the burning of calories has been debated in various different academic journals.


The goods news is that; most of the researchers have come to the  unanimous agreement  that  the  exer-gaming  really does  burn  considerably more  calories  than the playing of  the traditional video games. This is however does not amount to saying much about the issue at hand.  The real question remains; can the sports video games burn sufficient calories so as to improve the outcomes of fitness and health.  Does encouraging the kids to play more of these games inspire than to get out and try the real action or it simply makes them to get hooked in to the video games.


From some certain viewpoints, the sports video games are actually doing very good job because they simulate the real thing.

An example is the 2007 reporting by the New England Journal of Medicine that a 29 year old suffered from tendinitis in the shoulders   after playing Wii tennis.  Some other injuries that have been reported include 8 years old girl that was reported to suffer from head trauma after she was accidentally hit by her brother while swinging the controller.  In 2010, it was also reported that 14 year old   girl suffered from fracture after she fell off the sports video game’s Fit balance board.


In order to find out the truth about the levels of fitness, the researchers have engaged in various studies so as to compare the expenditures of energy of the different tasks.  The researchers use metabolic equivalents of the task (met).  The quit sitting on the sofa needs only one met. Playing tennis requires about 8 mets within the same period of time.


A study upon 51 students that was conducted in 2010 by the University of Waterloo in Ontario came to the conclusion that the traditional tennis video-game version required about 1.2 mets which is just slightly above the 1 met that is required for the resting on sofa.  The study also found that; on the other hand, the Wii Sports tennis burned on average 5.4 mets.  These study findings were consistent with some other earlier studies. These findings are based on the fact that; just like the real sports, the energy that you burn is highly dependent on how frequently and vigorously you play the game.


A good example and illustration of this is the 2007 study which involved 11 subjects.  It was found out that Wii tennis required about 2.5 mets. This is far below the agreed average of 5.4 mets.  In another 2009 study, the findings of which were published in the Obesity, it was found out that the active video games such as Wii bowling and Dance Dance Revolution can be compared to walking of moderate intensity.

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