New 'active' video games may give kids more exercise - WICU12 HD WSEE Erie, PA News, Sports, Weather and Events

New 'active' video games may give kids more exercise

Updated:
© iStockphoto.com / Thinkstock © iStockphoto.com / Thinkstock

TUESDAY, July 2 (HealthDay News) -- Newer-generation "active" video games give a slight boost to children's physical activity levels at home, according to a new study.

Most video games are passive and no better than watching television in terms of getting youngsters to move and burn energy. Children in developed nations spend 38 to 90 minutes a day playing video games.

But it wasn't known if active video games are any better. In this study published online July 1 in BMJ Open, Australian researchers looked at how removing passive games from the home or replacing them with active games affected the activity levels of 56 children, aged 10 to 12.

For eight weeks, all video games were removed from the home. This was followed by eight weeks of being allowed to play passive video games and then eight weeks of being allowed to play active video games.

Levels of physical activity didn't vary much during any of the three eight-week periods, according to a journal news release. Removal of video games was associated with a nearly four-minute increase of moderate to vigorous physical activity per day and a nearly five-minute decrease in sedentary time. During the period when the children were allowed to play active video games, their daily activity levels increased by about three minutes and sedentary time fell by just over six minutes.

The differences appear small and, by themselves, are unlikely to have any effect on children's health, according to the study authors Dr. Leon Straker at Curtin University, in Perth, Western Australia, and colleagues.

However, the researchers said these slight increases in activity are significant in light of the rapidly increasing levels of exposure children have to electronic gaming on computers, tablets and smartphones, as well as Internet surfing and social media.

"Therefore small changes across a variety of these platforms could result in a more substantial clinical impact," the study authors wrote.

"While our study focused on the home setting, school offers another opportunity for more active technologies such as sit-stand desks or active-input electronic media as part of lessons," they added.

The researchers also noted that replacing passive video games with active versions may be easier for families to maintain than a total ban on video games.

More information

The Nemours Foundation has more about children and exercise.

Health News Copyright © 2013 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

*DISCLAIMER*: The information contained in or provided through this site section is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional advice. Use of this site section and any information contained on or provided through this site section is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site section is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.
Powered by WorldNow
3514 State St. Erie, PA 16508
Newsroom: (814)454-8812
Toll Free: 1(800)454-8812
Business offices: (814)454-5201
WICU FCC Filing
WSEE FCC Filing
Share:
Share Stories
Submit your stories to our site!
Share Photos
Share your photos in our community galleries
Mobile:
Mobile Site
Be sure to stay constantly updated with the power of WICU12 and WSEE at your fingertips
Free Android App
Free iPhone App
Free iPad App
Storm Tracker App
Droid
iPhone
iPad
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WICU. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.
                   WICU/WSEE - 3514 State Street Erie, PA 16508 - (814) 454-5201 - info@wicu12.com