In this day and age, video games often get a bad rap for promoting laziness and lethargy. As health concerns over the rising rates of obesity in our population become more prevalent, it is important to look to video games and gaming systems that utilize the wide range of interactive technology available now such as the Xbox Kinect, the Wii, and Playstation Move systems.
Here are the Top 10 from Health Fitness Revolution and author of the book ReSYNC Your Life Samir Becic:
Kinect Training is an intense home workout with emphasis on cardio and endurance exercises. You have a virtual trainer and the option to customize your own workout plans or choose from preset workouts. The games allows you to track your progress and work on fitness goals such as strength building, toning, or weight loss. Some workouts include jumping over virtual hurdles and dodgeball and correcting your form is a cinch with your on-screen avatar.
HYVE ICAROS Machine (for Oculus Rift + Samsung Gear VR)
The ICAROS Machine is like no other–using the Oculus Rift or Samsung Gear virtual reality headsets, it combines exercising with a unique flying experience. The ICAROS Machine ensures a full body workout because you rest your knees and elbows in cradles and use your whole body as a controller to virtually fly through the different locations. This works balance, concentration, and reflexes by strengthening the neck, chest, shoulders, abs, and quads.
Beachbody P90X (for Xbox)
Beachbody P90X is a 30 day extreme workout program that features 5 all new custom routines to get you ripped. This game features explosive moves that work your muscle groups from head to toe. You also have the option for customized routines specifically designed for your fitness goals. Additionally, the Kinect has built-in technology that will monitor and correct your form as you go.
Widerun (for Oculus Rift + Samsung Gear VR)
Widerun is a virtual reality bicycle training game using a stationary bicycle and the Oculus Rift (or Samsung Gear VR headsets). The game allows you to cycle through different maps ranging from locations in American cities to the Swiss Alps.
Zumba fitness has grown to be one of the most popular group cardio fitness exercises. Zumba Fitness is a dance-based game where you move to the music with dance styles taken from freestyle, break dance, and Latin ballroom. You are given the choice to complete 20, 45, and 60-minute sweat-inducing workouts while you move to the music.
Dance Dance Revolution is a classic game for anyone that frequented arcades in the 90’s. With Dance Dance Revolution for home gaming systems, you have the choice use a dance pad or Wii Remote, Nunchucks or Balance Board to execute the full body movements or opt for just upper body movements for each song.
The Biggest Loser Challenge (for Nintendo Wii)
This game allows you to enter personal information such as age, height, weight, and exercise level in order to create a personalized fitness plan for you based on your goals. The game will even give you recommended routines, challenges, and nutrition information for each day and also track your progress. You have the option to complete workouts with the Balance Board, stability ball, resistance bands, or forgo a controller altogether which allows greater focus on the program.
Wipeout is an interactive obstacle course game that will test your agility, endurance, and balance. It gives you the chance to design and share your own obstacle courses or you can choose from themed obstacle courses such as the “Prehistoric Panic” or “Wipeouts Ahoy” maps. This game allows you to exercise your creativity along with your body to turn your workout into a creatively stimulating experience.
Your Shape (for Xbox 360 with Kinect)
Your Shape gives you the option of personalized workouts tailored to your fitness goals and specific work out level. The game gives you the choice of having a virtual personal trainer, fitness classes, or play gymnasium games and best of all the ability to see yourself onscreen and get instant feedback so you can check your form. You even have the ability to enter in your personal information and create personalized workout plans based on your needs and fitness goals.
Wii Fit (for Nintendo Wii)
Wii Fit uses the Balance Board with the Wii home video game console to bring you a slightly less intensive, yet still effective exercise experience (exercising regularly using this game can improve your posture and work toward fitness goals). The Balance Board will read your weight and detect your center of balance, and Wii Fit as over 40 activities you can choose from including strength training, aerobics, yoga, and other balance games.