With Wii balance boards throughout the UK still fresh out of their boxes, reports of aching muscles are mounting. Now the sceptics will tell you that the only people who will benefit from Wii Fit are sedentary couch potatoes who have never exercised in their lives before - but I disagree.
Ok, so like most diet/health/fitness products, Wii Fit comes with the usual disclaimer "…only effective as part of a calorie controlled diet" which is fair enough since We Fit is not intended to be a magic pill. The key is in the way it's been marketed i.e. a lifestyle product which means that to get the most benefit from it will require some ongoing effort and dedication on your part. In other words it's intended to be incorporated into your everyday lifestyle.
But the important question on many people's minds is 'can you really lose weight using Wii Fit?' and the answer has to be yes if Vinnk's Great Wii Fit Experiment is anything to go by. This has to be the most detailed user report on Wii Fit to date, with daily logs over 7 weeks. The end result – a weight loss of 5kg which may not seem a lot by 'crash diet' standards but it's weight that's far more likely to stay off. Granted, Wii Fit wasn't Vinnk's only exercise (he still cycled regularly) and although he didn't actually 'diet' as such, he was more aware of what and when he ate. The sceptics will of course say that these two factors alone could have accounted for his weight loss. Even Vinnk acknowledged that simply increasing his cycling and doing more sit-ups could have had the same effect but he also felt that without Wii Fit, he most probably wouldn't have had the same motivation to exercise every day.
Even if you already class yourself as fit, Wii Fit has other benefits as a recent blog post on product-reviews.net attests.
"Last night I was waiting for my brother to arrive outside his home and I realized I was standing with all my weight on one leg and I corrected this to a better posture like it shows you in Wii Fit…things are changing already."
Now that is life changing, as simple as it may seem. More importantly however, I see this last example as a huge testament to Shigeru Miyamoto and his vision for Wii Fit. Even he acknowledged that Wii Fit wasn't originally intended to make you fit. "I don't think Wii Fit's purpose is to make you fit; what it's actually aiming to do is make you aware of your body."
Whilst Wii Fit certainly seems to be making an impact in that regard, the bottom line is that everyone can benefit from Wii Fit in some way, whether it's losing weight, getting fit, becoming more self aware physically or just having fun with friends and family, so well done Nintendo.