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Canadian Gym Puts Nintendo Wii To Workout

Canadian Gym Puts Nintendo Wii To Workout

Nintendo Wii Gaming System Hits the Gyms as Personal Trainer..

It seems the widley popular Nintendo Wii has surpassed its gaming expectations and is now being used by a Vancouver Gym as a Virtual Personal Trainer.

The Canadian Health Club Studio 55 is offering a new form of exercise for people bored with the treadmill or cycling classes – The Wii Workout Station. Clients at the health club are encouraged to use the Wii as part of circuit training, warm-up or cool-down, with the system set up in a 400 square-foot theater room with a large projection screen.

Studio 55 Helath Club Workout Using Nintendo Wii

Studio 55 Helath Club Workout Using Nintendo Wii

While some other gyms have combined stationary bikes with PlayStations and Xboxes in a bid to win younger clients, a spokesman for Nintendo Canada said this is the first they have heard of a gym using the Wii in its schedule.

Nathan Mellalieu, the owner of Studeo 55, said he decided to bring video games into a fitness environment after watching how much fun some children were having and, more importantly, seeing them sweating.

“We are always trying to break down paradigms and keep things fresh. It is used here to break up the monotony of traditional workouts,” he told Reuters.

Kim Bey, a former Olympic swimmer, was among the first to take a shot at the virtual workout at Studeo 55 when it was first introduced two weeks ago, adding it was an easy learn.

I am not a video game person, so at first, it was like, ‘I do not get it’,” recalls Bey, who played Wii Sports for 20 minutes against her personal trainer. “But it did not take me long to get into it and actually break a sweat.”

Since the Wii was released late last year, various studies have highlighted its ability to improve fitness and even lead to weight loss by getting armchair athletes moving. A study conducted by researchers at the Liverpool John Moores University in England found that regular use of the console could burn up to 1,830 calories a per week, the equivalent to almost four Big Macs. Nintendo have picked up on this and are currently developing Wii Fit, a 2008 video game with an array of activities, from yoga to aerobics.

“We never set out to launch a fitness tool,” says marketing manager for Nintendo, Farjad Iravani. “But it is great to see that Canadians have taken the system and used it in a way that they perceive to be heavy exercise.”

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