Playing “active” computer games on consoles such as the Nintendo Wii is no substitute for playing real sports, warn UK experts. Young people are advised to take an hour of moderate to vigorous exercise each day, such as playing football. The energy used when playing active Wii Sports games is not of high enough intensity to contribute towards this, a British Medical Journal study found. Wii players used only 2% more energy than players of regular computer games.
“These increases were of insufficient intensity to contribute towards recommendations for children’s daily exercise. … Although this figure is trivial it might contribute to weight management. New generation computer games stimulated positive activity behaviours – the children were on their feet and they moved in all directions. Given the current prevalence of childhood overweight and obesity, such positive behaviours should be encouraged.”