It seems that video games that are active in nature may actually help your children to increase the levels of their physical activities. With the problem of obesity being a constant news item and video games being accused of playing a major role in the obesity problems, it may come as a relief to some parents that there are video games out there that might actually be good for their kids physical health.

The video games in question are called exergames and these video games employ a method of playing that is known as exergaming. Exergaming involves playing video games that use technology, which track the movements of your body. While exergames were simply created and designed as a way to make video games more entertaining, it seems that they have accidentally ended up having a positive effect. This is particularly significant since the generation that is most associated with health problems is also the one that is most associated with video games. Games that are considered exergames are those that involve rhythmic dancing, balance board simulators, sports simulators and virtual bicycles.

Physical Activity: The study

The study that was used to come to these conclusions was carried out by researchers from the University of Montreal and involved 1200 students who were in the 10th or 11th grade. The children were surveyed on how they used active video games. 73 percent of the participants stated that  they played at levels of physical intensity ranging from vigorous to moderate, and this was almost enough to meet the levels of physical activity that were recommended in the guidelines. According to the research, it turns out that exergames such as Dance Revolution and Wii Fit ranked among the most popular with these kids.

Girls versus Boys

Another thing that was noticed in the study was that boys were more predisposed to play video games that were considered non-active as compared to girls. This might serve as a caution to parents everywhere to be particularly mindful of the games that they let their sons play.

The future

From these results, the researchers suggested that video games may finally have a role to play in the fight against obesity not as part of the problem but part of the solution. The researchers bemoaned the fact that there is a current lack of school based exergaming and described this as a missed opportunity. Due to the appeal that video games have amongst the current school going generation, exergames would enable the idea of physical fitness to reach out to more students than those who are involved in active sports. The researchers did suggest that the feasibility of the idea should be tested in both schools and community centers in order to establish whether or not the idea could be sustained. All in all, it is good to know that video games may not be all bad.