Product Type: Nintendo game controllers
Newest Review: ... is great for storage when I'm not using it. How To Use The board plugs into your Nintendo Wii console using a USB cable. I like the fact t... more
Fitness and fun? Surely not...
Nintendo Wii Fit Balance Board
Member Name: mdhughes03
Nintendo Wii Fit Balance Board
Advantages: Easy to use, fun
Disadvantages: Probably not a good enough substitute for a good workout at the gym
When I first heard about this product I was very sceptical-computer games don't make you get fit and lose weight, I thought-that'd be exercise and healthy eating you're thinking of! However I didn't realise the full capabilities of this board and its software.
The Wii balance board is a wireless platform which you stand on to play the Wii fit games. It can sense whereabouts on the board you are standing, where your centre of gravity is and how you are moving. This is used in a variety of games which work on your muscles, balance and posture. There are also games which provide aerobic exercise.
Each game is played using the normal Wii remote, sometimes in conjunction with the nunchuks and the menu is navigated using mainly the A button.
The first section of the program gives you a "body Test" where your weight and height are recorded and marked on a chart. You then record your new weight each time you begin a session and you can set goals as to how much weight you want to lose in a number of weeks. The other part of the test gives you your Wii fit age, a number representing your overall fitness level. This test can also be repeated so as to keep a record.
The games which provide an aerobic workout involve stepping, jogging and a hula-hoop game. These don't sound too strenuous but the hula-hoop one nearly killed me the first time I tried it! I would class the step class game as moderately strenuous exercise but the hula-hoop and jogging games can be as strenuous as you like so you can actually achieve a good cardiovascular workout with them. The games are of quite short duration which in effect provides you with interval training, a great way to improve your fitness. The muscle exercises are regular sit up and press ups along with leg and arm exercises. Then there are balancing games and yoga poses.
There is an option to use either a male or female trainer who appears on screen to show you how to perform the exercises for muscles, balance and yoga. They talk you through it and you can watch them as a mirror image or from the back as you perform the exercise yourself. (However if you tire of them talking as I do, you can just press the A button to skip past it)
After each game you are given a score which goes into a leader board so that you can try and beat your best record the next time you play. There is also a time bank icon which appears at the end of each game to show how many minutes of exercise you have completed so far that day. As you add more time, you get to unlock further games, usually a more difficult level of the basic games.
I personally think this is a fun way to get a bit of exercise into your life and keep an eye on your weight. You can keep an accurate record but it is quite light-hearted and you can do it in the privacy of your own home and the absence of gym-bunnies! I also think it would be a great tool for encouraging kids to move more as the games are fun and competitive as well as good exercise.
Summary: A good start if you want to move more
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