How To Use Video Games To Keep Fit
Could it be possible that playing video games might be good for your health? VideoJug are here to point you in the right direction to shed some pounds while fighting aliens and shooting people. The very best video games to keep fit are explained in this video.
Step 1: The Nintendo Wii
Nintendo's latest console has eschewed the traditional race for ultra-realistic graphics and instead focussed on its innovative control system. Instead of a pad with buttons to press, the Nintendo Wii has a remote control, which can be waved about the place translating your real-world actions into the virtual world.
The Nintendo Wii comes bundled with Wii Sports, through which you can play sports like Tennis, Bowling, Boxing, Golf and Baseball without having to trek all the way down to a sports ground and risk having other people laughing at you. In all honesty, the only ones you're likely to work up anything approaching ‘a sweat' to are Tennis and Boxing, but scoff all you like: playing for 12 hours a week could lose you up to 4kg a month.
What's more, there are various other titles available for the console, most of which will have you up off the sofa swinging, shooting, poking, prodding, hacking and slashing all over the place and, unbeknownst to your inner slob, stealthily exercising…
Step 2: The EyeToy
Sony's PlayStation has an EyeToy attachment. It's a camera which, when placed atop your TV screen actually places you inside the game itself, so you can move about, waving your arms and jumping about the place like Yoda on acid.
It's not the most active of activities, admittedly. It's not like going for a good long run or anything, but it's a damn sight better for you than lying down pushing a button for twelve hours straight and passing wind occasionally.
Eyetoy games like Kinetic even offer simulated body combat personal training from the comfort of your own living room, burning up a sizeable 300 calories every hour.
Step 3: DanceMats
Dancing games work by forcing you to step on and off a mat in time with the music, matching the position of your feet to on-screen commands. Not only are you getting actual genuine physical exercise, but you look pretty damned cool to boot.
Think of it as the gaming equivalent of those bizarre Breakfast TV aerobics warm-ups that were all the rage in the 80s and 90s; the more you put into it, the more you'll get out of it, especially on the more furious later stages which could see you burning up a whopping 400 calories an hour.
Step 4: Specialist Equipment; Gamercize
If all the above fails, you should know it's perfectly possible to plug a custom exercise bike or running machine directly into your games console.
What this means is pedalling along as fast as a car in a racing game, or using a real-life treadmill to pretend you're running from the cops after accidentally shooting up some criminals the face in Grand Theft Auto.
The health benefits of a stepping machine or an exercise bike are well-documented. Take a look in any gym up and down the country – they're packed with the things. The advantage here is that you'll forget you're puffing away, and instead be more concerned with bumping off alien invaders or scoring points, all the while burning up a whopping 650 calories per hour.
It'll never be the same as going to the gym five times a week but it's better for you than just endlessly moving your thumbs, and combined with good regular exercise and healthy eating, you'll be looking younger and trimmer than ever.