Monday, October 11
How many times have you heard the phrase "think outside the box"? This is a fine phrase to ask people to expand the boundaries of thought process in search of solutions to long standing problems.
Thinking outside the box has given rise to the trend of reducing sedentary activity and increasing voluntary physical activity with exergaming. The concept of using the "enemy" of fitness to actually promote and improve fitness could never have been arrived at with conventional thinking. So it's good to think outside the box? Yes, but there's a limit. When thinking is done, it's time for the doing.
This is what I mean by thinking inside the box. The physical activity innovation exergaming has now been bought inside the "box" - so let's think about using it, start the "doing". Constantly thinking of new ideas is great, for example Xbox Kinect and PlayStation Move, but hang on, where's the justification and credibility of exergaming? What successes have we had so far, and is it enough?
The success of the Wii is not in doubt, selling more units than you can shake a wii-mote at, but is that success in physical activity? Not really. From my experience there's not been successful, sustainable, repeatable implementations of Wii in homes or schools (outside of obvious commercial success). How do we change that?
It's pretty clear from the research into energy expenditure and sustainability that we can get a better base for real implementation. This is what we are doing with Gamercize, from a base of promising data from studies we're looking into wrapping product with the process - in a schools programme.
To do this we need to think inside the box, look at what we have, use our experience, look at what it does and then figure out the best way to use it. In the next few months schools and teachers will be preparing to unleash this new thinking on the children of London, and those kids are sure going to have fun! Watch this space for progress updates!