Just because you play video games doesn't
mean you have to be a couch warmer.
There's a new trend called exergaming
that combines physical activity with digital
One of the most popular examples is Dance
Dance Revolution. To play this game, you dance in time
to the steps displayed onscreen using a special floor
pad connected to a PlayStation 2 or Xbox.
As the levels progress, the music gets
faster, and the workout gets more serious.
People have dance danced away more than
For proof, log on to http://www.getupmove.com/, where you can
read a testimonial from Tanya who shed 45 pounds in the
first six months of her Dance Dance Revolution workout,
without changing her diet at all.
The latest version of the game, called
DDR Max 2, is available for around $40 and the separate
dance pad costs $39.
A more specialized exergaming apparatus
is the KiloWatt Game Controller, which can be found
online at http://www.powergridfitness.com/.
This upright exercise machine, which can
be connected to any game console, has a steel platform
base and a shoulder-height game controller or joystick.
When you push the buttons on the joystick
to play a game, the KiloWatt responds by pushing back in
the other direction. The harder you play, the faster the
onscreen action and the better your workout.
is a good way to build muscle, if you can spare the
Video games are helping people shed
those extra pounds. Noah Robischon
A slightly less expensive option is the
Cateye Interactive Game Bike, which can be found on the
Web at http://www.cateyefitness.com/.
This stationary bicycle connects to a
PlayStation 2 console and lets players control the
action on screen by pedaling and steering.
The Cateye works with most any racing
style game by translating the speed of the pedaling into
the RPMs of the car or motorcycle on screen. The price
of the Cateye is not advertised on this homepage, but it
is available for around $350 dollars.
Another exergaming option is EyeToy
This is a dancing game similar to DDR,
except that instead of a dance pad on the floor, it
gauges your moves using a camera that sits atop the
The object of Groove is to swing your
arms in the air and try to hit the icons on screen in
time to songs by Madonna, Kool and The Gang, and Elvis.
The EyeToy camera and game are available
for about $50.
Later this year, a new Xbox release
called Yourself Fitness, on the Web at http://www.yourselffitness.com/, will
offer players a personalized regimen culled from 600
different fitness programs, including yoga, Pilates and
A virtual trainer on the screen will even
recommend recipes, meal plans and shopping lists for