Motion-Sensor Gaming and Fitness
Getting to the gym regularly can be a struggle for many people, but now you can get some activity while playing video games. Motion-sensor gaming is creating new fitness options for a variety of people.
First off, people should not substitute Xbox Kinect, Nintendo Wii, or Playstation Move for regular workouts. They can, however, be a nice supplement to a traditional exercise schedule or an alternative for days you can’t make it to the gym.
Motion-sensor gaming is a term applied to all video games in which players use live movements to control characters or objects in the game. The concept began with the Nintendo Wii which enabled players to control the game with its motion-sensitive nun chuck controllers. The PlayStation Move followed offering wands, complete with light up ping pong ball on its end, for users. Finally, Xbox Kinect was released featuring its revolutionary camera. It is the first system that captures individuals’ movements completely without the use of a controller.
Each of these new systems comes packaged with a sports compilation game. Some of the games available may be less strenuous than others, but they all require some form of body movement. It was Nintendo’s version of this genre, “Wii Sports,” that was first marketed as a way for people to stay active. As USA Today reported, the Wii “found a home” in retirement communities and medical centers across the country. It has helped seniors stay active and social, as well as assisting the injured in their rehabilitation regimens.
In addition to these sports compilation games, weight-loss fitness programs have been developed for each of the new platforms. The craze started, once again, with Nintendo who released its “Wii Fit” system which almost instantly became a best-seller, cementing the fitness game as a highly profitable enterprise.
The most advanced program is XBox Kinect’s “Your Shape: Fitness Evolved.” The game’s concept is to provide users with digital personal trainers to guide them through a rigorous workout including squats, lunges, aerobic boxing, and yoga. It also promotes cardiovascular fitness and balance. One of the most useful aspects of the game is the calorie counter which helps users keep track of how many they’ve burned.
However, digital game lovers don’t need a fitness game to lose weight and tone up. Nearly every game for motion-sensor systems requires movement and physical activity. Working out is now disguised as fun. Kinect’s “Dance Central” allows gamers to get a workout from something that is essentially a party game. Individuals rack up points by matching dance moves spot on.
Motion-sensor gaming has provided a fun and convenient way for individuals to amp up their fitness regimes, but games cannot compare to the physical benefits traditional gym activities deliver. After all, some couch potatoes have found ways to cheat the movements.
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