Monday, September 14, 2009

Exercising With Wii? This Link Suggests Doing Some Research.

A writer working for a Philadelphia online paper, the focuses on Wii Fit. In her article posted on September 8, 2009 she suggests that Wii Fit enthusiasts compile research to build the evidence needed to support the value of Wii Fit. The author, Raina Casare lists 4 steps Wii Fit players should follow to compile needed support of Wii Fit’s value as a true tool for virtual reality fitness.

As therapists, following these same steps can help us gather data supporting Wii Fit’s importance as a therapeutic tool for occupational and physical therapy.

Many students choose to do research aimed at boosting Wii as a tool for therapy. From time to time, students write to me and ask for help on these projects, but many forget to share the outcomes once they finish. If you completed a study involving Wii, why not post information about it under comments. In truth, these early studies and surveys lay the groundwork for more in depth Wii-Hab research in the future.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Wii-Hab Meets Medical Illustration

An artist, who received her MFA (Master of Fine Arts) in Advertising Design from Savannah College of Art and Design, which is located in my hometown of Savannah, GA, created wonderful visuals depicting the crucial aspects of Wii-Hab. Angela Moramarco infuses the very human components - the brain, the muscles, the bones and the soft tissue - into the very technical components - the remote and the console - of Nintendo Wii. These great illustrations tell a concise story. Nintendo Wii, when used correctly in a therapeutic setting, helps patients build new connections within the brain and between the brain and the muscles. For some patients therapy can be difficult and repetitious. Wii offers occupational and physical therapists a versatile tool to use as a part of the therapy plan not only for improving strength, endurance, and flexibility but also for improving sequencing and problem solving in a variety of patient settings including pediatrics (autism, cerebral palsey, PDD) and geriatrics (stroke, joint replacement, fall prevention).