Exergaming: virtual inspiration, real perspiration


Purpose: The USA is facing an obesity crisis so large that for the first time in history, this generation of children may have a life span that does not exceed that of its parents. Simultaneously, the gaming industry has introduced a form of video gaming (e.g. Nintendo Wii) that requires the participant to be physically involved in the game. For example, a live player will have a tennis racquet that he/she swings to compete with a virtual opponent on screen. This form of entertainment has been termed “exergaming.” People are buying these games for the purpose of entertainment. However, this paper aims to propose that there are possible unanticipated physical benefits of this new gaming technology.

Design/methodology/approach: A survey method is used to examine attitudes about exercise, video gaming and exergaming.

Findings: Results indicate a positive attitude toward exergaming, particularly with the more self‐identified sedentary respondents.

Research limitations/implications: This topic would benefit from a longitudinal study examining the adoption rate of this technology by previously inactive individuals and how its use translates into increased physical activity both with the video game system and other outside fitness activities.

Practical implications: The findings support exergaming as one way to get children to exercise.

Originality/value: The exercise potential of new gaming technology, i.e. “exergaming” is researched.



Document Type





obesity, exercise, video games, adolescents

Publication Date


Journal Title

Young consumers