It's fresh into a new year, the time when many resolve to get back in shape by losing the extra pounds and toning up their bodies. That’s the perfect time to jump on the balance board and try out the Wii Fit U.
The stereotype for a gamer, is one of inactivity. I however, am not your stereotypical gamer. I go to the gym, had a personal trainer and enjoy cardio four to six times a week, so I was intrigued to see how Wii Fit U fit in to my routine. Bring on the fitness!
Players start out with a body test, and for all my efforts I was ranked with a body fit age of forty-two. This was slightly unnerving. However, the test mainly evaluates sense of balance, of which I have none. The balance games consist of engaging activities that can make them enjoyable. My favourite was improving my balance while improving my golf swing, not that I actually play golf. Some of the mini games utilize tried and true pilates moves, designed to strengthen people's core which will leave players feeling the burn in their abs. Performing these mini games every day can definitely lead to improving the player's balance and core strength.
Next up was cardio, which I was most excited for. While you can break a sweat doing some of the mini games, many take too much time with explanations and are too short to leave you feeling worked out. I made a routine only consisting of cardio, roughly 20 minutes long, my normal workout length per-day. The routine was amusing, but the amount of time between mini games left the routine feeling disjointed. It was just too much down time for a cardio routine.
Wii Fit U includes yoga. The yoga instruction does not take full advantage of the balance board, resulting in little to no feedback offered on your performance. The only help is the mirror option which allows you to see yourself and try and perfect your position. It essentially feels like a yoga instructional DVD. It is a nice addition to the rest of the game but I really didn't use it. I have yoga DVDs by trainers with appealing personalities which I prefer to the bland Wii Fit U trainer.
The game has a tendency to use all the Wii U peripherals at different times. Having to constantly switch between a Wiimote, two Wiimotes, Gamepad and nunchuks becomes exhausting and further disjoints your workout. Make up your mind Wii Fit U! I'm looking forward to the Xbox One's fitness program, Kinect won't require me to hold anything. Wii Fit U does offer a pedometer, allowing you to upload your calories burned throughout the day into the Wii Fit U program. This is only useful if players are willing to put in extra steps every day, if they don't they will start counting their regular everyday body maintenance as part of their fitness routine. The goal should be to expand your fitness routine by building on top of your regular maintenance.
Wii Fit U makes a good addition to an existing fitness routine, however for an adult player, I wouldn't suggest it as their only source of fitness. People can burn far more calories by following fitness DVDs or doing a solid cardio routine(swimming, jogging, etc). On the other hand, Wii Fit U is an excellent source of keeping kids active. It's a great start to introducing kids to fitness and the idea of working out on a regular basis through a routine. Personally, I will continue to use Wii Fit U simply for fun on top of my regular fitness routine. Now to reward myself with a cookie.