This Saturday I went to lend support to a great charity at a fantastic venue. The charity, Parentline Plus has a focus on strengthening family bonds with helpline and email support, this weekend they ran an event for fathers. Parents and children were introduced to quality time activities in one of the UK's top leisure centres which included video game fitness with Xbox and PlayStation made possible by Gamercize.
As Gamercize was created from the experiences and needs of my own family, I was very happy to attend and help raise awareness of the event and introduce other families to Gamercize. The only problem is how can you demonstrate the ability of Gamercize to support every game in such a short period of time? The enjoyment of the products depends on the enjoyment of the game, get it right and everyone loves it, get the game wrong and people don't go home as enthused.
The Xbox 360 Gamercize Gym Pod is available in Chamberlayne Leisure Centre already, so I brought along a standard school set up - the GZ Mini Pod with a regular two player PS2. This is very popular with schools as the cost and range of games is unparalleled in exergaming. I had to choose one game for each console.
There are a lot of games based on first person shooter engines, which is not exactly what the parents of 7 to 14 year old children want to see. Luckily these consoles have been out long enough for some great family alternatives.
I still had to be careful though the games for this event should really be co-operative, and not competitive, to help the bonding theme. I chose Lego Star Wars for the PS2 and Crash of the Titian's for the 360. Both games are excellent action adventures with an emphasis on co-operation, puzzle solving and game progression.
Gamercize levels the playing field for fitness ability, making it the perfect exergame for parent and child together. When you have stood side by side with your child facing the dark forces together you will walk away with a stronger bond.
Both games were a huge hit, parents and children played well together, getting good quality exercise at the same time. Parentline provided fathers with information about Internet safety and the local heath trust showed how healthy eating can be fun too.
Despite all the children I would have thought that the large plates of raw vegetables would have been left at the end. Not so; all of it had been eaten and the trick was low calorie dips! As Gamercize makes exercise fun, this was a perfect healthy partner, making healthy food interesting!