Though I’m not saying it will make you fat.

Just like knitting won’t reduce your Grandmother’s waist but may loosen the stiffness of her digits, the Wii might help you balance, but it certainly won’t drop your calories.

Research carried out by Professor Gareth Stratton and a team at John Moore’s University in Liverpool, showed that the more active gaming brought by Nintendo’s Wii does not significantly impact child health.

The Liverpudlian team collected calorie burning data from six boys and five girls aged 13-15 who had played on both Wii’s and Xbox 360’s. Unless Microsoft have brought out a Master Chief fitness program making comparisons to the Wii more favorable, the results show that “gaming exercise” is not that effective.

The study revealed that you would only burn 60 more calories an hour playing the Wii than if you were playing the Xbox 360. That’s only a 2% difference. You could get rid of that 60 calories by eating one less cookie, or having one less nibble of a Maccy D’s beefburger.

The study, which can be found in the British Medical Journal, states that “these increases were of insufficient intensity to contribute towards recommendations for children’s daily exercise,” and that active gaming using the Wii is no replacement for actual sports.

This goes against Mickey DeLorenzo’s Wii Sports Experiment:

“Baseball, tennis, golf: Mickey DeLorenzo does it all on his wee.” (BBC Radio 1, spelling may not be accurate)

Mickey claimed to have lost 9 pounds in 6 weeks by playing Wii games. I’ve lost that much after a night on the town, with a mixture of vodka and grooving loosening my waist considerably the next morning. However, this behavior is not condoned or advised, since a good work out or daily walk would be much more beneficial to stay away from the orbit of obesity.

The study did concede that playing Wii games may inspire children to take up a more active life style and thus aid in weight-management, but that the actual calorific abilities of Wii activity is merely trivial. Whether this will change with the release of Wii Fit is another matter.

Source: BBC, via Next-Gen Biz


  1. I know Mickey DeLorenzo on a semi-business level; you may take that to mean that I am a reliable judge of his word or that I am biased… that is purely up to you.

    But, on my honor, I can testify that he did lose those nine pounds through vigorous sessions of Wii Sports (you can’t sit on the couch playing and expect to lose weight; you have to be in to it), ate a normal diet, and lived no different outside of the game room than he would have before.