Son of Grok

Ready to Rock... And get in shape

Ready to Rock... And get in shape

Everyone knows about the Wii with its “Fit”, “Sports” and “Resort” games. Xbox and Playstation are each coming out with their own versions of body mechanics controllers and games as well. Its obvious that this is a definite trend in the video gaming world and it is here to stay.

The question is… “Is there really any validity to exercising with a TV and a video game console or is it all just a joke?”. “Does fitness gaming have any true business claiming itself in the fitness world?”.

My answer may surprise you…

YES

I say “Yes” these games and this movement absolutely have a PLACE in fitness and staying healthy. Anyone that goes out and buys a Wii Fit and expects to instantly lose 200 pounds is an absolute idiot but that does not mean that it is not exercise and that it isn’t good for you at all. I used to scoff at these type of video games and laugh them off as a complete joke. As I am getting older though and care less about my dignity and image I am much more open to trying new things even if they may make me look like an idiot. I have actually tried most of these new body movement and fitness related video games and straight up… they are not only exceptionally fun but you can work up a mean sweat in the process!

I don’t think that a fitness program can or should be based on any of these activities but they make a great supplement to or part of any healthy lifestyle or fitness routine.

One of the most important aspects of these types games is that they are fun. I am a firm believer that getting your exercise through fun activities kicks the crap out of planned, scheduled, repetitive workouts anytime.

I recently picked up a couple of Dance Dance Revolution games and pads for my xbox and am absolutely hooked. I used to make fun of the kids that played DDR but it is SO much fun now that I gave it a fair shot. I play this game until I am pouring sweat, exhausted and about to collapse. My main regret is that I can’t play it more often because it IS truly hard and it IS truly a work out so I actually need recovery time between marathon sessions!

I haven’t stopped working out because I am getting exercise by playing this game but it has offered me unbelievable fitnes related benefits. I can tell you that because of these DDR sessions, my stamina is on a level I have not experienced in an extremely long time.

So my advice is to embrace these new activities and this movement and to enjoy it and reap the benefits and the entertainment. Just don’t expect a miracle as you shouldn’t with anything these days. If you have scoffed these types of activities I challenge you to at least give them a try.. you may find them more challenging, and heck more fun than you ever expected. When you are ready to challenge the SoG in a DDR dance off… you let me know!

- The SoG

25 Responses to “Do Video Games have a place in fitness?”

  1. rsg

    DDR will kill you.

  2. Son of Grok

    Rsg,
    Like in a freddy kruger way or in a brutal delta member boot camp instructor way?

  3. Son of Grok

    For those of you who have requested to see my out of shape tail actually playing…

    http://www.sonofgrok.com/sogddr.jpg

  4. Roger De Rok

    Is Egon gettin’ on the pad next?

  5. Son of Grok

    You can see Egon waiting for his turn in the linked pic. (Egon is my 110 pound German Shep for those of you that don’t know)

  6. Darrin

    Can’t resist… gotta post this hilarious Wii Fit parody video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_iYBmAVuBns

    I suppose it’s good for people who are glued to the tube every night and now want to get in shape, but for most of us… I think we can do better.

  7. Dan

    I agree. It seems not quite right but it would be heaps fun and if its movement then who cares. I played tennis on the Wii with a friend and loved it. Like you I wanted to keep playing but was getting puffed.

  8. Son of Grok

    Darrin,
    That was pretty funny stuff. I do have to say that DDR or Wii tennis or sword fighting is much more active than they made the fit look lol.

  9. AndreAnna (Primal Matriarch)

    I think it’s great if the alternative is to sit on your ass. It’s fun and it keeps your heart rate up and if you do it right, has a lot of plyometrics. Coupling this a few times a week is a fun way to incorporate low-mid intensity cardio.

    My husband dropped 30 pounds just be doing t his the summer leading up to our wedding five years ago. I think you motivated me to get the dance pad out!

  10. Troy

    Kudos for posting a pic.! That game makes one look like a fool. My wife wanted it for x-mas last year and I mocked her to all ends. Truth be told though, it’s hard and certainly works up a nice sweat.

  11. Sassyinkpen

    I had to come and comment because I’m just getting into active gaming myself as a “physical hobby” – I don’t use these things in place of my regular workout, I use them as an add-on for play and fun and physical activity.

    Two I would like to recommend to people interested in them are both Wii games:

    Walk It Out – from Konami, which is a game in which you simply walk around an island collecting points (for each step you take) and using the points to unlock scenery, new routes to walk, new songs to walk to….it’s addicting and fabulously fun.

    Gold’s Gym Cardio – a boxing game that is really fun, well designed and feels GREAT. (and I hear tell that when I unlock some of the other exercises, I’ll get to box a BEAR! *g* )

  12. mom of sog

    Sog – confess that your mom beat your pants off sword fighting…… and I will confirm that you have dancy feet on the DDR.

  13. Son of Grok

    I will admit that at first you may have beat my pants off… but the apprentice has become the master.

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  15. Deanna

    DDR is awesome! I love it! When you get advanced, the moves can really kick your butt. Try doing an hour of DDR on the hardest level and pick the really quick, upbeat techno songs. It’s HARD! When my friend is in town, we make a point of finding an arcade with a good DDR machine and play together. Wait a minute, did I just say play in the context of something that provides a hard workout? How primal does it get?

  16. Chaohinon

    Even games that don’t work your body are still working out your brain a little. Way better than zoning out in front of the television, at least.

  17. Primal Toad

    I used to own a Wii Fit and I whole heartedly believe that Wii Fit or any of the other games that make you move around have a place in the primal fitness world. Playing Wii Fit instead of another game that causes you to sit down and not move is a great alternative. You can get a pretty good workout that will ge your heart rate up in the desirable range.

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  19. Melissa

    DDR Rocks! I’m not much of a fan of the Wii games, as they don’t seem like much of a workout, but DDR can really wear me out. Plus, it’s awesome for developing better coordination and balance. Though, I still trip over my own feet occasionally!

  20. Vivian

    So I used to be a huge fan of DDR, but it always caused me leg injury. I think you end up working some muscles in your legs too much versus not really working others and you don’t really get a full swing of movement. Every movement is very cramped and limited… if you play heavy and challenge songs. Just my own speculation, but I quit DDR (reluctantly, I might add) because I needed to rebalance my leg muscles.

  21. Great links for the weekend!

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  22. Regena Yorks

    Has anyone here ever tried Evony? I suggest checking it out for anyone who wants to try something new, it’s free and will keep you entertained for quite awhile. I found a link that gives you some extra start up gold when you sign up which helps a lot for noobies so go through that if you want to try it out. Hope you all love it.

  23. Paul

    I am a beginner at Primal BluePrint and this controversy has been asked already. It is 90 to a 100 degrees here. I bought a game called “WALK IT OUT” and have been using it. I was told it was wrong because it was working toward Cardio. But I love it. It is simple to use and really easy for me since I have a knee replacment and a recent hip replacment. And it allows me to excerise out of the heat and on a level surface till I can get a huge amount of weight off.

  24. Moneta

    Video games have been found to help educate people on how to improve their health and fitness. As a result there are a number of fitness video games on the market. Both the Xbox 360 Kinect and the Nintendo Wii have several different types of fitness games. There is everything from Jillian Michaels Fitness Ultimatum 2011 to EA Sports Active 2 and Jumba Fitness. Today there isn’t any excuse to not get in an exercise routine. You can do it in the privacy of your home at any hour of the day.

  25. goodangels

    Our family got a Wii this Christmas and at the end of January bought the wii fit plus software and balance board. These fitness games work and I’m the proof. Combined with the primal diet and one hour daily workout sessions on the wii I have lost 12 pounds in one month. Plus it’s FUN. So don’t knock it until you try it :) Highly recommended.

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