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Want to lose weight? Get out of the gym and start playing your video games. That sounds like odd advice, but more and more people are following it with some success. Nintendo’s popular game system, the Wii, is being used for a lot of things – gaming, of course, as well as athletic training and, believe it or not, weight loss. That’s right, Wii weight loss is one of the hottest trends in both video games and weight loss today, introducing a whole new audience to the fun and action of video consoles.

These days, you may be as likely to find an older and slightly overweight person investigating the Wii consoles at your local electronics store as you will a teenager. That’s because Wii’s unique physical approach to gaming can serve to enhance anyone’s efforts to get rid of those last few pounds – and here’s how.

First of all, if you’re not familiar with the Wii, you’re probably thinking “how does this Wii weight loss idea work?” I mean, video games aren’t exactly known for their cardiovascular and muscle building benefits (unless we’re talking the muscles in your thumbs). In fact, the Wii’s approach to gaming embraces a much more physically engaged approach than your average game, particularly when it comes to sports-related games.

Rather than clicking a few buttons or moving a joystick to, for example, swing the bat in a video baseball game or roll a bowling ball in a video bowling game, Wii users make the actual movement with the game’s controller in hand. Boxing games, for example, require the user to actually box – upper cuts, roundabouts and all. In other words, Wii has found ways to get gamers off the couch and into the physical reality of the world. And the implications for Wii weight loss are amazing.

So how much weight can you lose? Well, the results are obviously going to vary depending on what games you play and how, as well as your regular diet. Here are some quick tips for creating a Wii weight loss program of your own.

  1. Pick the physically active games: Please don’t expect your Wii weight loss plan to benefit from one of the traditional games that don’t require much movement on the part of the user. You’ll need something like simulated boxing, tennis or baseball. Wii Sports (which includes Tennis, Baseball, Boxing, Bowling and Golf) comes with the Wii system. Wii fit, which builds on these approaches, should be out in early 2008.
  1. Commit to 30 minutes per day (at least): Playing Wii Tennis once and then rushing to the scale to check your weight probably isn’t going to work (although you may see some water weight loss). The Wii system is operating as your daily exercise – emphasis on daily.
  1. Eat healthy: No matter how much you exercise, if you don’t eat in a way that is compatible with weight loss (i.e., eat fewer calories than you spend) you won’t lose weight. Period.

Bear in mind that some people have experienced soreness and tiredness after their Wii workouts, so don’t push yourself too hard. And remember that any weight loss effort is going to require some physical activity on your part.

If you take this advice and set up a winning Wii weight loss plan, the results could be amazing! Wii users from around the country have documented hundreds of pounds in lost weight, reductions in their Body Mass Index — and increases in their sports skills. You can learn more at a site like WiiHealthy, which documents the success stories of people using this unusual method of weight loss.

When done right, the Wii weight loss system seems to be a “win-win” for everyone – so go ahead, give it a try!

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