Increase Your Cardio Workouts at Home using Wii
If for some reason you are not comfortable performing your cardio workouts in a gym or outdoors, now you can Increase Your Cardio Workouts at Home using Wii. As you probably know, cardiovascular (cardio) exercise consists of aerobic exercises that can raise your heart rate and keep it elevated for a period of time. Cardio workouts years ago consisted of jogging, fast walking, swimming, or any repetitive exercise that one could do for lengths of time without a break the routine. During this time high impact aerobics (bouncing and jumping up and down) was very popular as well.
Personally I never enjoyed going to the gym for my cardio exercises because I was self-conscious of being a little overweight in addition to being very well endowed in the boob department, as well. Ladies you know the problem with exercise bras and attempting to do aerobic exercises. While I'm not near as big as the lady pictured above, at times when one is self conscious at the gym; parts of your body can feel over-exaggerated. Sure the guys enjoyed the view and never complained but, ladies if you’re big busted you know exactly what I’m talking about. Later on that year the job I was working on required 10 to 12 hour days, and exercise got eliminated completely.
Well, if you can relate to this story so far, then I can also tell you that there is still hope of you getting in a good cardio workout from home. Perhaps you are like me as well and cannot stay motivated with just DVD workouts alone. If this is so, then let me share with you what I discovered during the Christmas holidays and that is the Wii console and its numerous fitness workout videos. However, before I discuss that the details of that let me share the numerous reasons that cardiovascular (cardio) workouts are important.
Benefits of Cardio Workouts
A good cardio workout is very important for overall health and fitness because it gets the blood moving by improving oxygen consumption within the body; thus increasing metabolism and generating more energy. There are numerous reasons one should find the time to do a good cardio workout:
the heart muscle stronger and builds up the lungs
- Increase the amount of oxygen your body takes in and enhances circulation
- Maximizes the number and diameter of small blood vessels
- Promotes Weight loss and reduces overall body fat
- Decreases the risk of heart disease, heart attack and stroke
blood pressure and improves blood fats
- Decreases the risk of some types of cancer and type II diabetes
- Activates the body's immune system
- Improves endurance and stamina
- Increases bone density
- Promotes flexibility and improves balance
- Increases energy level
- Enhances one self- confidence, self-image and self-esteem
the body's endorphins and minimizes stress
- Eases tension
- Improves depression tendencies temporarily
- Promotes a sense of well-being and relieves anxiety temporarily
- Improves abilities to have better sleep
- Enhances muscle tone
Doctors are Using the Wii Balance Board
A couple of months ago, I heard on the news that some doctors were using the Wii Balance Board (WBB) to access their patients “standing” balance. Such tests in the past were done on expensive machines called a laboratory- grade force platform that costs $20,000 US. My research revealed an article titled Wii Balance Board Passes Doctors’ Balancing Test that discusses a paper that was published in ScienceDirect, in which the testing results from the WBB were compared against the testing results of the laboratory-grade force platform.
The doctors found in their experiment that the tests from the WBB were just as accurate as the expensive laboratory-grade force platform. Since the Wii balance board price averages about $125 US dollars this means that more doctors will now be able to perform the standing balance tests within their offices for an initial investment of under $500 US (Wii console & balance board required). The WBBs are now being used to strike a balance after strokes when patients need to learn to walk again and to help prevent falls within the elderly. Another report states that the Wii products may be used for exercise to increase the cardio workouts of heart attack patients. Here are some articles that supports these findings:
Great for Busy People
Provides Demo Instructions
Plan Your Workout with Wii
Now individuals are learning that anyone can Increase Your Cardio Workouts at Home using Wii. Just as with any fitness plan it is important to develop a program that works for you, even if your workouts are within the comfort of your own home. Here are a few steps that will be beneficial to an individual planning to use Wii for cardiovascular exercises:
- Create a workout profile - Separate from your "gamer" profile and take a body test. The body test measures your weight and your BMI. The best way to get this done is to have the Wii Fit Plus or if you already have the balance board then you will only need to purchase the Wii Fit DVD only.
- Create a goal for yourself – Set a realistic goal of weight loss to occur within a number of weeks. Then you can begin developing a workout plan specifically for your needs. As you progress over the weeks there will be more exercises available and at increased levels of difficulty.
- Decide the amount of time you will spend working out - If you have 4 days a week, and 30 minutes each day then you might want to do two aerobics days to increase your cardiovascular and two days of performing body sculpting exercises.
- Allow the Wii Fit Trainer - To keep you motivated and assist you in designing your workouts. The programs are designed to do aerobics and step exercises that will get the body moving and the blood pumping; while providing feedback on how you are doing.
- Be open to change in your routine – On the days that you want to do something less strenuous than aerobics then try working out with the balance board or yoga games or play a couple of games of tennis with the Wii Sports video.
Wii Fit Plus Review
Details of the Wii Fit Plus
As stated in the above video the Wii Fit Plus can be programmed with the necessary information to get you started with your cardiovascular workout. The video to the right is an example of the impact that the jogging exercise can have on a child. It definitely will make you sweat and it acts as a personal trainer in that when an exercise gets to easy it will challenge you by increasing the speed and or endurance of the exercise. Wii can keep you motivated by letting you know that you are doing well and or will tell you when you need to improve.
There are a few little things about this program that might get you a little down or hurt your feelings. One if you are fat, the training program will tell you that you are fat, but then it will let you know that you are doing the right thing. If you gain weight the balance board will sigh or say ouch to let you know you’ve gained. However, think about it this way; it is better to come from a machine than from a loved one. Let’s face it sometimes the truth hurts. There are several reviews out on YouTube about this product. Please note that if you are an experienced exerciser in the beginning you might be a little bored with what seems to be easy workout routines. However, I encourage you to just go through them quickly and then as you progress you can get to the point of where you are truly challenged. Be sure to check out the videos here and also take a look at my hub, Wii Games: Fitness Guru 2010 below that reviews more of the Wii products that are for fitness.
UPDATE: The American Heart Association (AHA) and Nintendo Join Forces to Endorse Healthy Living.
According to Nintendo the AHA conducted its own studies and found that the average person spends more than 8 hours a day in a sedentary position. Their survey revealed that 40 percent of Americans feel that exercising is not fun and or time consuming. Therefore, many individuals are not motivated to participate in exercising at all. Nonetheless, since 2006 Nintendo’s Wii Fit products has been encouraging its players to participate in exercise in a fun way while goal setting with a variety of activities. The American Heart Association has launched an online information center for individuals to find more information on the benefits of physically active play at www.activeplaynow.com and encouraging individuals take a look at the Wii Fit Plus line of products.
So let’s get moving America and become healthier...
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More Info on Cardio
- Good Cardio Workouts at Home - LoveToKnow Exercise
- Kick It Up With Cardio Exercise
Exercise experts, including fitness maven Denise Austin, answer cardio questions for WebMD, so you can make the most of your muscle burn.
- What is Cardio Exercise - How to Do a Cardio Workout for Aerobic Fitness
A cardio workout has many health benefits, but do you know what a cardio workout really is? Find out about the benefits of aerobic fitness, what your target heart rate is, and how to find it.
- What is cardiovascular exercise?
Cardiovascular exercise has lots of health benefits like lowering your blood pressure, and also it can burn lots of calories - for those of you who want to lose weight.
As the videos have shown there are numerous games that can assist in increasing your cardio by using the Wii console and other cardio workout games that can be purchased. My sister and I have come to enjoy the Wii Fit Plus since the holidays. And it has definitely assisted in getting the entire family moving. I hope this has provided you with additional information on the importance of cardio exercises and the Wii Fit Plus workouts that can assist you Increase Your Cardio Workouts at Home using Wii. Please check with your doctor is you are under a physician's care prior to changing your exercise routine. And as always if you have an experience you would like to share; comments are welcomed!