Testing the Effectiveness of Exercise Videogame Bikes Among Families in the Home-Setting: A Pilot Study

in Journal of Physical Activity and Health
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Background:

Interactive stationary bikes provide positive affective experiences and physiological benefits; however, research is limited.

Methods:

This study compared usage of GameBikes to traditional stationary bikes among families in the home following a 6-week randomized, controlled trial design. Parents completed questionnaires featuring constructs of the theory of planned behavior (TPB). Usage was tracked by all family members and belief elicitation with GameBike families followed the trial.

Results:

Usage across the trial was significantly different for children in favor of the GameBike group (t36 = 2.61, P = .01, d = .85). No differences were identified for parents. Significant time effects for parents’ (F5,48 = 5.07, P < .01; η2 = .35) and children’s (F5,32 = 8.24, P < .01; η2 = .56) usage were found with declines across 6 weeks. Affective attitude was the only significant TPB variable between groups at both time one (t57 = 2.53, P = .01; d = .65) and follow-up (t52 = 2.70, P = .01; d = .74) in favor of the GameBike group. Elicited beliefs were primarily affective- and control-based.

Conclusions:

The results provide support for use of interactive video games to augment current PA initiatives. Larger-scale trials with longer durations are warranted.

The authors are with the Dept of Exercise Science, Physical, and Health Education, University of Victoria, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.

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