Abstract 1045: Energy Expenditure in Adults When Playing Next-generation Video Games: A Metabolic Chamber Study
Background and Purpose: Many individuals spend many hours sitting in front of their TV playing video games. This type of behavior contributes to decreased physical activity. Next-generation video game systems controlled through arm gestures and motions (Nintendo WiiSports), and force plate-controlled video games (WiiFit), are becoming increasingly popular. These systems may attenuate the sedentary lifestyle and permit video game enthusiasts to increase their energy expenditure (EE). This study was performed to determine EE during WiiSports and WiiFit game activities.
Methods: Twelve adult men and women performed all the activities of WiiSports (5 activities: golf, bowling, tennis, baseball, and boxing) and WiiFit (41 activities classified as yoga, resistance, balance, and aerobic exercises). Each activity was continued for at least 8 min to obtain a steady state of EE. As EE was assessed in an open-circuit indirect metabolic chamber consisting of an airtight room (20,000 L or 15,000 L), subjects were freed of apparatus to collect expired gas while playing the games. Each subject completed a metabolic chamber measurement under three different protocols: sitting rest, WiiFit balance and resistance exercises (3 h 50 m), Wiifit yoga and aerobic exercises (3 h 13 m), and WiiSports (48 m). The order of the three sessions was assigned randomly to each subject. MET (Metabolic Equivalent) value was calculated from resting EE and steady-state EE during activity.
Results: The mean intensities of all 48 activities were distributed over a wide range from 1.3 METs (zazen: yoga) to 5.6 METs (single-arm stand: resistance exercise). The mean intensities in yoga, balance, resistance, and aerobic exercise of WiiFit, and WiiSports were 2.0, 2.0, 3.1, 3.9, and 3.0 METs, respectively. The intensities of yoga and balance exercise were significantly lower than those of resistance and aerobic exercise of WiiFit, or WiiSports. There were 9, 23, 9, and 5 activities with intensity <2 METs, 2–3 METs, 3– 4 METs, and >4 METs, respectively.
Conclusion: Time spent playing motion and gesture-controlled video games can partially count toward the daily amount of exercise required according to the guidelines provided by the ACSM and AHA, provided they are played in an active fashion.