Wii used for physical therapy

 

Robbie Winget, an occupational therapist who oversees use of the Wii at Dodd Hall, said news that a rehab hospital in Alberta, Canada, was using the popular new video game system sparked the idea.

Winget played with the Wii at a friend’s house and was convinced that it could help patients build balance, coordination, endurance and upper and lower body strength.

“I thought it was cool that you used your body to control the movement,” said Winget, who added that Nintendo has not provided the hospital with the video game console.

The hospital has been using the Wii for about four months to help people recovering from strokes and spinal cord or traumatic brain injuries, according to Winget.

Patients also use the Web-connected console to find information on its news or weather channels to improve brain function.

All the patients at Dodd Hall usually undergo a total of three hours of daily therapy and work with the video game system for about 30 minutes per day two to three times per week.

Winget said he didn’t think other home video game consoles could match the Wii’s appeal with older patients.(story)

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