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Xbox 360 Kinect Review: Getting Fit with Video Games

Written on March 1, 2011 at 1:25 pm , by

Looking for a fun way to burn extra calories? Check out the latest video game craze: Xbox 360 Kinect puts a spin on gaming by eliminating the need to hold a controller to play—you simply stand in front of the device as it scans you, and then YOU become the controller. Since there are no wires or wands to manage, you can just focus on the game—as you move to play, your hand, arm and leg movements are copied on screen.

Image from Amazon.com

Microsoft recently invited me to test out Kinect’s new get-fit titles and sweat alongside trainer and fitness DVD star Jennifer Galardi. On offer: The Biggest Loser: Ultimate Workout (Bob and Jillian guide you through the routines!), Your Shape: Fitness Evolved, EA Sports Active 2, and my fave: Kinect Sports.

Jennifer kicks her way towards a GOAL!

Jennifer and I chose to battle it out in a boxing match, jabbing our way to a KO—after 3 rounds, I barely inched past and won—the surprise? My biceps and triceps actually felt a burn, and I had started working up a sweat! Though there are other similar titles out there on competitor’s game systems, playing without holding a controller takes the experience to the next level by getting your entire body in on the calorie-burning action. In addition to boxing, Kinect Sports lets you choose from soccer (“kick” the ball and see it fly!), beach volleyball, bowling, table tennis and track and field. If you’re looking for a more tailored workout with personalized training, check out the other fitness titles above—each one delivers results while making it fun.

Check out Xbox.com for more info—if you already have an Xbox 360, you can easily upgrade to Kinect by purchasing the sensor only and hooking it up to your game console.

So, tell us: what’s your favorite active video game? Do you feel the burn when you play?

  • Melissa

    I LOVE our Kinect. I’m working my way through all the games with my kids. It’s such a great way to work up a sweat together, esp. when it’s too cold to go out. Our newest favorite is Sonic Freeriders.

  • April

    I don’t own a Kinect but I am definitely considering the purchase! I played Kinect Dance Central with a friend and loved it! It was so much fun and a great full body workout. My heart was pumping and my muscles were tired by the end of each routine. The next day my obliques, abdominals and superficial back muscles were sore!! Love that burn!

  • Blue

    I use Wii with the EA Sports Active 2. I lost 100lbs on the first version – Highly recommend it. I was not a fan of Wii Fit, but the EA Sports active series has been awesome for me. I am a geek and I like to work out at home…and I have replaced my gaming with active gaming – and it has worked!

    Now I also do “weighted” sessions of DDR – ankle weights and little dumbbells – 30 minutes of dancing like that works up a sweat!