Impact of Nintendo Wii Games on Physical Literacy in Children: Motor Skills, Physical Fitness, Activity Behaviours, and Knowledge

Physical literacy is the degree of fitness, behaviours, knowledge, and fundamental movement skills (agility, balance, and coordination) a child has to confidently participate in physical activity. Active video games (AVG), like the Nintendo Wii, have emerged as alternatives to traditional physical activity by providing a non-threatening environment to develop physical literacy.

This study examined the impact of AVGs on children’s (age 6–12, N = 15) physical literacy. For six weeks children played one of four pre-selected AVGs (minimum 20 min, twice per week). Pre and post measures of motivation, enjoyment, and physical literacy were completed. Results indicated a near significant improvement in aiming and catching (p = 0.06). Manual dexterity significantly improved in males (p = 0.001), and females felt significantly less pressured to engage in PA (p = 0.008).

Overall, there appears to be some positive impact of an AVG intervention (like the Nintendo Wii) on components of physical literacy.