Video game health

Carlos Suhr, Business Manager

The Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and Nintendo Wii are the most popular consoles on the market, but when children spend hours on end sitting in front of the television, does it become a concern?  Since the release of each console, sales equaled over 25 million units

Although people often enjoy the positive effects of video games, such as the escape from reality and ability to strategize, negative effects may arise in response to playing video games. For example, children can become socially isolated because a child can spend more time playing video games than he/she does hanging out with their friends or playing outside. Another disadvantage to video games is that children can learn to accept violence as a natural phenomenon and their vocabulary is impacted in a negative manner. Health concerns that can accompany excessive playing include obesity, skeletal and muscle disorders, or possibly carpal tunnel syndrome.

“By playing video games, people lose focus on what is real and what is fake,” junior Mason Cheng said. “People will eventually lose their social skills because they would rather play the next round in matchmaking online rather than hang out with their friends outside in the real world.”

To alleviate health concerns, Microsoft and Sony created the Kinect for the Xbox 360 and Playstation Move for the Playstation 3. With these products, humans can become the controller and actually get an opportunity to exercise while playing video games. With the creation of the Kinect and Playstation Move, these companies hope to encourage children to get some exercise while they play.

“I don’t believe that the Kinect and Playstation Move are health benefits,” sophomore Stephanie Levine said. “By making these products, Microsoft and Sony are creating more incentives to stay indoors instead of exercising outside and in a gym.”

Despite the fact that playing video games isn’t the best thing one can do for their body, companies such as Sony and Microsoft are trying to integrate their software so that people can enjoy their technology while in the outside world and encourage exercising.

“ I think that a health benefit will one day arise because of video games,” senior Alex Parker said. “Because technology is growing, I think that one day they will come out with a system where video games will become part of our everyday lives.”