Motion controllers are bad for your health

Posted by Emma Woollacott

Interactive gaming can be seriously bad for your health, according to researchers from the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

While  traditional gaming is notorious for causing sprains and the like from manic button-pushing and joystick-wiggling, platforms like the Wii are bringing a whole new range of problems.

Researchers from the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia examined data from the US National Electronic Injury Surveillance System, which collates information from hospital emergency departments.

They found nearly 700 game-related injuries between 2004 and 2009. The mean age was sixteen and a half - although the youngest victim was just a month old, and the oldest 86.

While more injuries were caused by traditional games, the interactive ones had more variety, with players much more likely to have injured their shoulder, ankle or foot, as well as more likely to be cut or bruised.

Spectators of interactive games were also much more likely to be hurt.

"Younger children under the age of 10 should be supervised while video games are being played to prevent bystander injuries, which are more common with interactive games," said lead study author Patrick O'Toole.

Reports have included black eyes and other injuries caused by letting go of an unsecured Wii remote, and even bruising to a delicate part of one man's anatomy, caused when playing a Wii boxing game with his girlfriend.

In one of the most bizarre episodes, the British press reported earlier this year on a woman who claimed that she'd been turned into a sex addict by falling off her Wii Fit board.