ARTICLES | February 6th, 2007
Loose Weight With Nintendo Wii?

So claims a North American fan of the machine, and he’s posted the results of a six-week weight-loss experiment conducted with the console to prove it.

Mickey DeLorenzo, 25, began his fitness regime on 3 December 2006, intending to play Wii Sports for 30 minutes each day for the six weeks to 15 January 2007. He ate and drank as normal during the test. Indeed, his lifestyle remained unchanged from the period before the experiment. The only modification was the addition of the 30-minute gaming session. The results: DeLorenzo claims his weight fell from 181lbs (82kg) to 172lbs (78kg), and his Body Mass Index (BMI) – essentially a height:weight ratio – fell from 25.2 to 24.0. With the aid of a fitness specialist, he measured a two per cent body-fat loss over the period.

Of course, none of this is entirely surprising. We can confirm that Wii Sports is all about getting you off the couch, onto your feet and moving about. We worked up quite a sweat when we tried it. Any exercise is good, and a daily 30-minute routine at the gym or running around the park is likely to yield similar results. Still, it’s nice to know that video gaming, traditionally viewed by its opponents as a slothful, character-weakening activity, can have the opposite effect.

Each of the sports utilises the Wii Remote to the full. In Tennis, Golf, Bowling and Baseball, the controller is used just as a player would use a tennis racket, golf club, bowling ball, baseball or baseball bat in real life. With amazing realism, the slightest movement has an affect on the ball, enabling players to dictate the speed of the ball, curve and direction with the movement of their hand. For example in Tennis, the game registers forehands, backhands, volleys, lobs, slices, spin and power depending on how fast the user swings and at what angle. In golf, the harder the players swing the further the ball will go.

In Boxing, the Nunchuk attachment is added to the Wii Remote, with each controller representing a boxing glove. Players simply make a punching motion with the controllers to hit their opponent, punching high to hit the opponents face or low for a body blow. Hold both controllers together in front of their faces or torso to guard and move side to side to duck and weave.

Wii Sports is not just fun alone, the challenge really heats up as players take on family and friends. Go head-to-head in Boxing and Baseball or challenge up to three others to Tennis, Golf or Bowling to find out who is the real champion of Wii Sports!

Wii Sports also offers players the chance to hone their skills and become the best of the best with its Training Mode. When a task is practiced, players are awarded a score that is saved, providing a target to beat. Once a certain score is achieved, players can earn gold, silver or bronze medals.

What?s more, with the game?s Wii Fitness Test players can determine their Wii Fitness Age, which can be anywhere above 20 years old. Players must train everyday to lower this age, which is calculated based on the performance over a series of sporting events that vary each time. For example, players could be asked to hit home runs or return a certain number of balls in tennis. The daily results are saved, along with previous ones and can be viewed as charts showing progress over time. Wii Fitness Mode also features a triangular chart showing the players? strongest area, such as balance, speed or stamina and what they need to work on.

With Wii Sports, players can be the star of the show by playing as their very own Mii character; as designed through the Mii Channel. Mii?s can be made to look like their owner and used in each game included on Wii Sports. Mii?s not only save the players unique set up, but also provide a skill level to judge just how good players are. Each time a match is played the player is awarded a score. The better the player?s performance the higher the score they receive. Players build up their skill level in each sport with a view to becoming a Pro. This also allows the Wii unit to select a worthy opponent to compete against them when the player plays alone.

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