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Wii Fit Plus is Not Only Fun and Entertaining, it is Also Therapeutic
Wii Fit Plus is an interactive video game that can encompasses multiple fitness activities including sports, strength training, yoga, and balance games. This article describes the author's personal experience in the games therapeutic value as well.
During the course of the year, Matt had multiple surgeries. One of them resulted in hemiparesis, or a profound weakness on his left side. Suddenly, everything changed. Many of the activities he previously enjoyed became difficult, some were impossible. Luckily, he never gave up. He continued to want to try to do whatever he could, whenever he felt up to it.
One day, he decided to try playing on the Wii. He started by sitting on the couch using only the remote in his right hand to make the Mii figures perform the activities. It was a slow start, but it was a change of pace from lying on the couch and watching the same TV programs over and over again.
Before too long, he decided he wanted to try more. With my help, he was able to stand on the Wii Fit board to perform some of the basic activities. He struggled and we laughed when the fit test showed his Wii Fit age to be over 70. Nonetheless, he continued to persevere. Each day, he would want to play the game. What started out as a few minutes at a time soon became hours each day. He loved watching the Wii piggy bank fill with the hours he played. He was thrilled to see it change color as he reached various milestones: 10 hours, then 25, and finally a gold piggy bank when he reached 40 hours.
In addition to having fun, he began to get stronger. His balance and coordination improved. I also noticed a huge difference in his endurance. Before long he was able to use his left arm and walk up and down the stairs without assistance. We soon came to view the game as more than just a toy: it was a fabulous therapeutic tool. Additionally, the rest of the family would take turns playing with him to make it fun for him. We discovered a side bonus: we, too, were getting in shape.
I know there are many other fitness games on the market this year trying to compete with Wii Fit Plus. Some of them have more realistic people figures. The games may be very good, but I don't really care if the person looks like me. I am quite fond of the cute little Mii figures whose coloring, hair, attire, and facial expressions can be changed to suit your whim. To be honest, I don't think there is another game on the market that would be as good for our family as Wii Fit Plus has been. It has been used more than any other game we have ever owned. We all enjoy playing it and it has positive results. What more could anyone ask for in one game. It leaves me with only one question. Since Wii Fit Plus was an upgrade (adding numerous activities to the original Wii Fit), how long will it take Nintendo to develop an upgrade for the Plus version? If they do, we will be first in line to purchase the newest addition.