This evening I was playing with the wii fit plus. I quite liked the concept of how using the balance board as a metaphor of issues around balancing the body, and possibly many other things in life. Besides interesting take on stretching exercises and its application in balance/vestibular rehabilitation or other aspects, fostering balance and depth of focus in concentration were two things that I found really remarkable playing with the wii.
I think one of the most remarkable aspect of the wii fit plus (at least the little that I played with it) was the way it integrated the sense of balance in a very physical and psychological sense, and perhaps in a personal way, although it did not seem to enhance or recommend that aspect. For example, the evaluation of an individual on the wii fit plus system starts with the player stepping on the balance board and doing some simple balancing exercises. This in itself can have other app(imp)lications, including balancing exercises and balancing diagnostic tests for vestibular nerve disorders or vestibular diagnostics and rehabilitation exercises. Although not much work has been done on using wii fit or the balance board as such for vestibular diagnostics, there seems to be quite a bit of interesting studies on using the wii or the balance board for vestibular rehabilitation as well as using for rehabilitation of older adults which is encouraging.
I played for about half an hour with the board and the system. This could be a good accompanying or supplementary tool for the actual workout or yoga sessions, but where it struck me was the beauty of this programme in fostering the sense of balance. The focus of the programme was in ensuring an optimum balance in posture, but also if one played games such as meditation (very simple game really, where one just sits on the balance board and focuses on a flickering candle flame and there are occassional distractions, if distracted the body shifts and this is captured by the software and the score gets lower; the idea is the stiller the body is, the better the balance and the higher the score). if you discount all of the scoring and game playing, the very fact that it makes one aware of the need for maintaining balance and equipoise is a significant thing. I’d be interested to see if people have generally researched this aspect of wii in fostering a sense of balance in almost every sense of the term: physical balance, mental poise, and concentration. At least it has impacted my thinking about striking a balance not just in the physical sense of the term.
I think using this device it is quite possible to develop earthquake simulations and adjustment exercises for a range of applications. This becomes relevant in the context of the city where I live in where people’s lives have been badly affected by earthquakes.