Motion games for seniors

Exercise video or computer games for elderly

So, video motion games like Kinect games may not be what comes first to mind when thinking about exercise that could suit elderly people, but it can be a really good idea. Plenty of research*, studies and clinical experience report about the benefits for elderly to play computer games as a way of exercise and activation. It's fun, it's easy to arrange both in a private home and in a care home. It probably takes less time to engage in a computer game activity for those who live far away from say, a park and would otherwise need to take a bus, train or car to get somewhere for the activity. Not to mention how more easy it is to engage in it if it's raining outside. Furthermore, it's pretty inexpensive. Once you've invested in the equipment, a computer or consol, a Kinect camera and the game, it's there. Of course, nothing can beat the real life, a computer game can never beat the feeling of being outside a sunny day, to feel the wind, hear the sound of trees and birds. Computer games can be a compliment, a way to increase physical and psychological activation.

Many elderly now feel healthy, lively and alert high up in age, but of course some experience development of arthritis, joint pain, have had a TIA or stroke, some may be more stress prone, and/or experience memory troubles and difficulties in concentration and attention. And for that matter, cognitive difficulties can be a problem for people in their midage also due to increasing stress and demands in modern life.

The Kinect games from Mixxus Studio aims to take those factors in consideration in the game design. The games are easy to start and play, even for people not used to computers. They could be played sitting down or standing up. They are developed to be less stressful than ordinary games, in the use of music, scenery and tempo.

In "Country Ramble Games", available in Windows Store, you take a walk at a moderate pace, and in Wall Ball for Kinect, also available in Windows Store, you kick a football against a wall, and try to hit some extra objects.

Find objects during the walk to get Bingo

Try to get a good Poker hand during the walk

Try to pop the elusive Bubbles during the walk