Wii Fit combines fitness, fun in gaming experience

The Wii console is no doubt one of the most revolutionary of our lifetime and has set new standards in the gaming industry.

Nearly a year after its release, Nintendo’s Wii Fit is still going strong as one of Nintendo’s top-selling games for the Wii console, with more than four million copies of the game sold in the U.S. since its release in May 2008.

So what is the big draw of the Wii Fit? Why are we all suddenly willing to be more active? The answer is simple. Our friends at Nintendo have realized that people are becoming less and less active and more drawn to sedentary lifestyles that include things like video games.

So why not make a video game that also promotes a healthier, more active life?

For those of you who have still not been able to get your hands on the game due to high demand, or for those who just don’t want to shell out the cash, I am here to highly recommend your purchase of a Wii Fit.

Especially for Tech students, video games seem to consume a majority of our time. Since we attend a college that specializes in technology education, this comes as no surprise.

Even though the Wii Fit doesn’t have the most advanced graphics (and it may not be the latest and greatest RPG), it still has a lot to offer today’s gamer. It has the ability to suck you in with its five-minute hula-hooping aerobics exercises and will still make your muscles sore the next day.

When first beginning the Wii Fit regime, the included Balance Board performs a “Body Test” that includes a body mass index (BMI) and a balance test. Your BMI is based on your height and weight and will help you decide on personal fitness goals, while the balance test allows the Fit to calculate your “Wii Fit Age.” Unfortunately, this means that clumsy people, such as myself, will end up with higher ages even if in good physical health.

The Wii Fit Balance Board is possibly the most important part of the game. It acts as a scale when performing your Body Test. It is also able to sense your center of balance, which makes you more aware of your posture as you try to improve.

The Fit then helps you to track your progress and logs all of your Wii Fit activities including Yoga, Strength Training, Aerobics and Balance Games. The more exercises you do, the more new activities you are able to unlock. Likewise, as you perform more Strength Training activities, you unlock more repetitions for each exercise, thus enabling you to continue challenging your body as you work toward your fitness goals.

While working on the Yoga or Strength Training, you are accompanied by one of Wii’s very own personal trainers, who will encourage and motivate you as he or she shows you the proper way to do each exercise. The Balance Board challenges you to keep your body properly positioned and to keep your weight properly distributed as you exercise.

The Yoga exercises are all classic stances that include poses like deep breathing, sun salutation, half moon and warrior. The Fit’s Strength Training includes lunges, push-ups, side planks, jackknives and torso twists.

Wii Fit’s Aerobics is one of the most enjoyable parts of the game. They feel much more like games than exercises. One of the many exercises is hula hooping. Challenge yourself to keep hula hooping as your Mii friends throw more hoops around your waist. Not only will you feel completely ridiculous while you violently swing your hips in desperation, but you might even break a sweat!

The Aerobics includes other activities such as running in place (while on screen your Mii will be running along a path with other Miis) and step aerobics.

The Balance Games category is very typical of other Wii games. Your Mii can perform activities such as skiing down powdery slopes, soccer headers (which includes having to dodge cleats thrown at your Mii’s face) and tightrope walking.

At $90, Wii Fit may seem a bit pricey, but the immense amount of fun that you will have is definitely worth the cash.

So next time you have an hour or two to kill between class or studying, think twice about which video game you’d like to play, especially since you might just find that you’re enjoying yourself (and making yourself sore) far more than you were expecting.