Our Wii Fit arrived yesterday! We found one in stock at Dixons, using the great Wii Fit Stock finder (you have to be quick off the mark, but can normally find one if you persist – actually as I write Tesco.com have them in stock and they’re £5 cheaper than most other places!). It arrived pretty quickly – much quicker than the promised 5 working days.
We have only had one evening using it, but here’s my experience so far.
The first thing it does is talk you though everything, which can be a bit annoying (an animated Wii Balance board starts talking to you!), but it’s only for the setup. You select a Mii to represent you, and enter your height, and Date of Birth.
Next, you stand on the Balance Board for a little while and it measures your weight and centre of gravity. Apparently a central COG means you are fitter! From your weight it also measures your Body Mass Index (BMI).
I discovered a) I am overweight, and b) My centre of gravity isn’t as good as it could be. It also told me my Wii Fitness Age, which was about 10 years older than my real age – not good. You can also set yourself a target weight, and a date to reach it. Nicely, it warns you if your target means you will need to loose weight too rapidly, and suggests you change it (I did). The idea is you re-do this test daily so it can chart your progress.
Next is the fun part – the training. This can be done at any time, and is the ‘game’ part of it. This is split into 4 sections:
Yoga poses are exactly that – yoga poses. I wondered what the point of using Wii Fit to do yoga would be, but it’s quite nice because when you are in the pose, it encourages you to keep your balance on the board by showing a dot you have to keep inside the circle. It then gives you a score based on how little the dot moves.
Some of the poses are simplified (for example the Sun Salutation) only has stages that keep your feet in the same place (who’d have thought I actually knew something about yoga eh!?).
Four poses are available to you to start with, and more appear as you train more (one more was unlocked for me). All are demonstrated pretty well by an animated trainer, and other sounds and animations encourage you to breath with a good rhythm.
I didn’t do many of these, but they are things like press-ups and twists. They are also demonstrated by an animated trainer. The twists I did seemed easy, but the press-ups were much harder (although I got a good score!).
This is where it starts to get a bit more fun. It includes things like hula hoops, step aerobics and jogging.
The hula was quite fun, and tiring, although Abby struggled to keep the hoops going. Do it enough and you get a more advanced version (I was too tired by the time it appeared though).
Step aerobics was ok, but didn’t really get my heart racing – it’s a bit like a dance may game where you step on and off the board to the beat.
I didn’t really get on with jogging. This doesn’t use the balance board, but instead measures your speed from the Wii Remote which you are meant to put in your pocket. This didn’t seem very accurate and the speed kept changing even when jogging at a fairly constant speed.
These activities are all based on shifting your weight on the board to control the game. I was generally pretty bad at these – I struggled to move the weight anywhere but centred, or all the way in one direction or the other. I don’t think this is a fault of the games, as the idea is to train you to get better. They all seemed pretty good fun and will hopefully get better as I get more skilled!!
The time spent on all activities is stored in a graph so you can keep track of your progress. Another nice thing I liked is that you can add activities you’ve done outside the Wii Fit training on to the graph so it encourages you to train generally, not just spend all day playing on the Wii.
Overall first impressions are pretty good. One downside I haven’t mentioned is that if you have your location set as the UK then all measurements are in imperial, and there’s no way to change this. A minor point, but annoying as I work in metric most of the time.