Nintendo Wii keeps older people fit

Nintendo Wii was originally developed for the usual gaming market, i.e. children, teenagers and young adults, but many studies have now been conducted on the benefits of the Wii for older people.

These include:

  • Increase mental stimulation or activity
  • Provide good exercise for the body
  • Increase social interaction among seniors as well as with their family members
  • May improve hand-eye coordination
  • Provide fun and entertainment

So how does the Wii work and how can it benefit the elderly?

The controllers respond to real body movements. There are very few buttons to master and many games can be played just by swinging your arm

The Wii encourages body movement, but it can be played with varying degrees of mobility

There are many Wii games that are designed for family participation

Like many consoles, the Wii can be quite addictive, but because it encourages movement, the more you play, the fitter you get

The best Wii games for older people

  • Wii Sports Resorts
    • Wii Sports gets you up and moving with games like golf, bowling and tennis. Wii Sports Resort offers 12 different mini-games. Swordplay, basketball and cycling encourage players to get up and moving. Games like archery and frisbee require excellent concentration and hand-eye coordination
  • Wii Fit Plus
    • Wii Fit Plus is primarily a fitness title, and comes with the Wii Balance Board, which is the centrepiece of most of its mini-games
    • The Balance Board measures weight and balance. While the weight aspect mainly plays into your daily “body test” so you can keep track of your weight over a period of time, the balance feature is key to most of the mini-games. In the football game, for example, you have to stand on the balance board and lean to the left and right to block incoming balls and dodge projectiles
    • Strength and yoga exercises test your ability to keep a steady centre of balance as you do push-ups, crunches and various yoga positions
  • Big Brain Academy: Wii Degree
    • Big Brain Academy: Wii Degree claims to keep the mind sharp and focused just like way crossword puzzles, Sudoku, reading and any other intellectual stimulation
    • It features a range of mini-games that test the player’s abilities in categories such as maths, language and logic
    • You can take tests daily to get an intelligence score, play the mini-games freely, or compete in multiplayer mode
    • Multiplayer lets you choose from simultaneous two-player games or eight-player games where you go one-at-a-time and pass the Wii remote around, which is fun for your ageing parent to play with the family or with friends



  1. Happy people live longer | My Ageing Parent says:

    June 14th, 2012 at 1:59 pm (#)

    […] iPods can be pre-loaded with audiobooks and music for your ageing parent to enjoy. Nintendo DS, or Nintendo Wii can help keep both brain and body active, alert and […]

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