VR fitness and interactive workout games have taken the fitness industry by storm in recent years. The market has continued to grow at an incredible rate ever since Nintendo popularised the idea with their revolutionary motion-tracking console, the Wii. Lately, VR workouts are proving to be a particularly popular way to get your heart pumping from the comfort of your own home.
However, for VR fitness to be effective the experience must be about more than just the headset. Getting the most out of the technology means transporting the player to an exciting world. This creates a workout that is effective, fun, and immersive.
What we love about VR fitness and interactive workout games
What is fitness gaming? Well, it is a selection of video game workouts that will have you breaking a sweat in no time. The range of VR games out there in particular cover the whole spectrum. From a little light cardio to high-intensity, blood-pumping workouts.
Beat Saber and BOXVR by FitXR have really nailed the latter. They are accessible to beginners whilst still putting your arms to the test and engaging the whole body in unison. We found that adding wrist weights was a simple way to really up the intensity! (n.b. please do your own research before trying this approach. Talk to your healthcare provider if you have any concerns. Our advice: start small!).
As with any form of exercise, if your goal is weight loss then the practice must be combined with a diet plan, and be repeated regularly to see effects. Your ability to endure aerobic exercise will rise exponentially with this sort of workout.
All that being said, at present VR has a number of drawbacks that prevent the gaming fitness market from really taking off. The headset itself is heavy and uncomfortable during a workout, whether that be through neck strain, sweating or just disorientation. Furthermore, it cannot currently fulfil one of the key requirements of exercise, and that’s strength building.
Our experiences with fitness gaming are a big part of what inspired us to create Quell. Our unique wearable—the punching Gauntlet—adds resistance to safely increase the effectiveness of the workout. Hence it encourages the development of strength as well as fitness.
By sticking to a more traditional screen-based approach such as PC fitness games, you’re free to get lost in the experience. No more worrying about bumping into unseen furniture or having to protect your precious headset from sweat.
VR fitness and interactive video game workouts provide an environment for us to exercise and blow off steam, whilst having fun. Now there is an ever-increasing variety of styles and types of exercise on offer. Could 2021 turn out to be the year of fitness gaming? Here are our top picks of what’s out there at the moment.
If you fancy a funky, dance-style workout then give Audio Trip a go. Alternatively, if a more high-intensity, adrenaline-boosting session is more your speed then give Thrill of the Fight a go. This game puts your skills to the test in a VR boxing gym, pitting you against seasoned fighters to really test your mettle!
We enjoy and have played such games ourselves. However, we noticed that almost all offerings lack the narrative depth and long-term sustainability of traditional games. That’s why we’re building a fitness game with a fun, interactive storyline that has tonnes of replayability.
This marriage of real fitness and serious gaming is something we’ve dubbed Immersive Fitness. This is a game so engrossing that you forget you are exercising at all! Mind takes over matter, and before you know it you have completed your daily physical activity, burned a packet of calories and gotten stronger to boot!
This is something that differentiates us from other home exercise gear such as Peloton or Mirror Fitness. Whilst both companies are huge success stories, users are constantly reminded that they are in a workout. If you struggle to commit to exercise long-term already then this might cause you to quickly fall out of the essential habit of working out.
At Quell we want our product to get our users fighting fit without making exercise a painful, laborious process. We believe the secret lies in delivering an immersive storyline with a wide variety of activities, encounters and settings. This way our players will always be excited to see what today’s workout will bring. A truly interactive exercise game.
VR fitness and interactive workout games in general have come a long way in a short space of time, but there’s still a long way to go. A VR headset might seem like the next big thing in the space, but right now it’s a tough proposition to move your whole workout routine into virtual reality. In our experience, it just can’t quite deliver the same workout efficacy yet.
Beyond that, the games available can be limited in their ability to sustain a user’s attention, given their lack of depth and variety. We designed Quell to hit the marks that fitness gaming has thus far failed to meet—keeping you coming back for more so you stay healthy and, crucially, entertained in the long term. The real future of fitness gaming!
Wondering where to buy Quell? No problem! Our product is available to preorder on IndieGoGo.
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