Pokemon Go makes people twice more likely to achieve the recommended minimum daily activity, according to a new study which shows that the popular augmented-reality smartphone app may be particularly beneficial for overweight players.
Pokemon Go makes people twice more likely to achieve the recommended minimum daily activity, according to a new study which shows that the popular augmented-reality smartphone app may be particularly beneficial for overweight players. Following the huge success of the game since its release last year, many have wondered whether the app offers health benefits by dragging people out of their houses for a walk around the neighbourhood.
“Pokemon Go is probably one of the most popular mobile games in history,” said Hanzhang Xu, a graduate student at Duke University in the US. “It has great potential to promote physical activity, but very few studies have examined this question,” said Xu.
Researchers gathered data from 167 people who played Pokemon Go. The users provided information about the number of steps they took each day, using the step count that is automatically stored in the app, ‘Live Science’ reported.
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The results showed that players were twice as likely to reach 10,000 daily steps – the recommended minimum daily activity – after they began playing Pokemon Go. The percentage of days in which they walked more than 10,000 steps increased to 27.5 per cent after they began playing, up from 15.3 per cent before they started to play Pokemon Go.
The study participants’ average daily step counts increased by about 2,000, bringing the average daily step counts for all participants to about 7,700.
The gains were larger for the participants who were more sedentary or overweight before they started playing the game, suggesting that these groups benefit the most from playing the game.