Wii Games Speed Stroke Rehab
Active Video Games Help Stroke Survivors Regain Arm Strength in Study
WebMD News Archive
Stroke Rehab With Wii Games continued...
The patients could use a Velcro strap to attach the controller to their hand
The others played recreational card games or Jenga, a block stacking and
Both groups engaged in eight doctor-supervised sessions, about an hour long,
over a two-week period. "During each session, they'd engage in one game for 30
minutes, then the other for the next 30 minutes," Saposnik says.
The findings were presented here at the American Stroke Association's
International Stroke Conference 2010.
Improved Speed and Strength
None of the participants experienced any serious side effects from the
games. Two patients in the recreational therapy group and three patients in the
Wii group reported being unusually tired after the sessions.
When evaluated after the two-week course of therapy and again a month later,
people in the Wii group could reach out and grab an object such as a can of
soda about seven seconds more quickly than those who played recreational games,
"That may not seem like much, but if you imagine every task you do being
seven seconds longer than usual, you'll see how quickly it adds up over the
course of a day," he says.
People in the video game group also had a stronger grip than those in the
recreational game group, he says. "They were faster and stronger," Saposnik
Duncan tells WebMD that the reason video games enhance motor function so
much is that they are "highly repetitive and task-specific. Doing the same,
precise thing over and over activates brain cells. The brain rewires and
existing connections work better," she says.