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The Effects of the Wii Fit Plus on Bone Mineral Density and Flexibility in Adults

2011, Master of Science, University of Akron, Physical Education-Exercise Physiology/Adult Fitness.

Background: Since 2006 there has been a surge in the production of interactive video game systems. The Nintendo Wii was the first in this generation of physically active gaming systems as well as the first to utilize the system for exercise. An exercise program for adults should consist of balance training, flexibility training, cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength and muscular endurance training. The Wii Fit Plus incorporates all of these physical fitness components with games that involve yoga, strength training, aerobics and balance games.


Purpose: To determine if the Wii Fit Plus can increase flexibility and bone mineral density in an adult population and establish if it can be an effective alternative to traditional exercise.


Methods: 28 male and female participants were recruited from the University of Akron’s ZipFit program and were evenly distributed into an experimental and a control group. Pre and Post-test measurements were assessed for the dependent variables: flexibility and bone mineral density. Flexibility was assessed using the YMCA Sit and Reach Test while bone mineral density was assessed using the QUS-2 Calcaneal Ultrasonometer. The experimental group underwent an eight week exercise protocol utilizing the Wii Fit Plus while the control group continued on with their normal activities of daily living.


Results: 25 participants completed the study successfully. Results were based on numbers from thirteen experimental group members and 12 control group members. An independent samples t-test compared the mean difference of the pre and post-test measurements of the two groups. No statistically significant data was found. A repeated measures ANOVA between the groups also showed no statistical significance in flexibility or bone mineral density. While not statistically significant, an increase in flexibility was observed in the experimental group when compared to the control group.


Conclusion: Short time frame and small sample size could explain the lack of significant results. When looking at the results it cannot be concluded that the Wii Fit Plus can sufficiently replace a traditional exercise program and does not have a significant effect on flexibility or bone mineral density.

Judith Juvancic-Heltzel, Dr. (Advisor)
Ronald Otterstetter, Dr. (Committee Member)
Rachele Kappler (Committee Member)
52 p.

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Potenzini, N. (2011). The Effects of the Wii Fit Plus on Bone Mineral Density and Flexibility in Adults. (Electronic Thesis or Dissertation). Retrieved from https://etd.ohiolink.edu/

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Potenzini, Nicholas. "The Effects of the Wii Fit Plus on Bone Mineral Density and Flexibility in Adults." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. University of Akron, 2011. OhioLINK Electronic Theses and Dissertations Center. 20 Apr 2015.

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Potenzini, Nicholas "The Effects of the Wii Fit Plus on Bone Mineral Density and Flexibility in Adults." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. University of Akron, 2011. https://etd.ohiolink.edu/

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