Tuesday, September 30, 2008

GZ Spin Trainer from Gamercize

The "GZ Spin Trainer" will be formally announced in October by Gamercize (UK-based), and exhibited to the public later that month, as a solution for high end sports training, suitable for athletes and sports people who demand an even higher level of exercise in active gaming. Check out the larger shot of the specially modified spinning bike and other details. (*Note: the group of spinning bikes is not the new GZ Spin Trainer and came from the NY Times.) A little bird shared this photo of the last prototype before the first production run comes from some small country named China. The photo was shot from the rider's position looking down at the armrest bars and the GZ Spin Trainer display. I believe it is the first full-sized Gamercize exercise machine and it is obviously more solid than their Gamercize Power Stepper or Gamercize Endurance Cycle. The maximum capacity of the Power Stepper is 220 pounds and I'm not sure if the Endurance Cycle has a maximum. For individuals of normal weight, the weight limit is not a huge problem but I've come across a couple of instances where heavier subjects (210lbs) and overweight youth were on the cusp of being too heavy for the Power Stepper as they could feel the flexing in the frame. I know nothing would break but they felt a little awkward using the stepper and I'm sure using a full-sized machine like the GZ Spin Trainer would make them feel more comfortable.
Originally written on 09-13-2008. Updated 10-03-2008

Wii Will Not Walk Alone

I posted earlier about Ubisoft's pedometer game for the DS, but this is a new pedometer patent for Nintendo and according to the links there's no telling into which platform this pedometer will be integrated. Seeing as the DS already has a pedometer, fit would make sense that this is being geared up to use with Wii games and maybe even the Wii Fit Board (if they don't already have too much dust on them). Click on to see my thoughts on the amount of motion sensing devices being let loose. It's really interesting to see how many more devices that are coming to market lately. Between the FitBit (FitClip), miCoach, jOG, and the many undisclosed projects, it's a pretty exciting time for those of us in the physical activity and motivation fields.
[Via Gizmodo, and OAMI via Kotaku]

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Helix - Hot Hands on Wii

After reading some interesting posts on the GFH (Games for Health) listserv, call it a coincidence, but look what popped up on the radar, Helix a WiiWare game. For a very low price-point (10 Euros - still have to check if it's available in US) you have essentially DDR for the upperbody (a la EyeToy) using the existing Wiimote and nunchuck. The debate has been going for a long time about why we don't see more "exergaming" titles by major studios, and typically it boils down to the millions of dollars it takes to design, develop, produce and market a typical game title. With Helix and more like it to be released as WiiWare and for PS3 Live, maybe this could be a major focus for the smaller (and bigger) software companies to develop physically engaging games that use existing hardware.

And here is the rest of it.

[Via Sporle & Co.]

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Handigo for People of All Abilities

In what is the first cross-blog post between this blog and my Rockstar PE blog, Ubisoft released a free online game called Handigo The Game. Actually there are three mini-games (Sensory handicap, Motor handicap, and Mental handicap) and their objective along with handicap International was to play games that puts you "in a disabled persons's shoes." Of course I must take issue with that phrase as we all know the importance of using first person language, i.e. "person with disability or "person with a handicap." And here is the rest of it.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Fitbit for a healthier lifestyle

Fitbit looks to be the latest device and web service to assist users in tracking their overall health (physical activity, sleep, and nutrition). Actually I think they should call it the HealthClip because monitoring these metrics does not guarantee a certain level of fitness...bit I digress. In their launch at TechCrunch50, they want to inspire "people to exercise more, eat better and live a healthier lifestyle." Check out after the jump for more images how this device will compare with other accelerometers and physical activity measurement devices.. I think many of us in the physical activity assessment world have been waiting for an affordable device, accelerometer or otherwise, that can validly and reliably capture data and have a smooth user interface (UI). So many of the accelerometers (triaxial, biaxial, unixial), heart rate monitors and pedometers have terrible UI's (or none at all) and are not geared for the user, but the researcher. Besides BodyMedia's re-branding their ArmBand device as BodyBugg, I can't remember the last time I saw a decent attempt to track physical activity with some semblance of thought going into the user's needs and interaction with the device and software application. I know of at least two other companies that have similar products in top-secret development and the Fitbit should give them plenty to think about. This is one device I can't wait to try out!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Bounce to Health with GravitX's Game Air

In what looks to be a cross between a mini-trampoline, inflatable balance baord, and small step machine we welcome GravitX and their GameAir 3 to the exegaming world. Check out the video after the jump.  I know Ernie got to try these out at his XRTainment Zone and I will follow up with him about his hands-on.   And here is the rest of it.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Ditto for less pain

Want less pain while changing bandages on burn victims, check out DittoAnd here is the rest of it.

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