Print Edition: Dec 11, 2011

Tune In, Turn On, Sweat Out
Take the work out of working out and get fitter in style. Try motion gaming.

In the 90s, video games took the country by storm. When the arcade machines made way for consoles and the trend moved indoors, skeptics deemed it as the death of physical sport. Today, that very console is prompting people to be up and about. The main reason for this shift is the motion sensing technology, which scans the body and replicates movements in a digitised avatar on screen.

Microsoft Xbox 360 Kinect
A controller-free upgrade of the Xbox 360, the Kinect responds to your body actions and voice commands. One such game, the UFC personal trainer, has a body tracking system that makes it easier to perform precision exercises like Brazilian jiu-jitsu wrestling and Thai kickboxing. With upto ten different exercise regimes, from intense-cardio to light aerobics, each workout can be customised to your personal fitness level, aiming at specific muscle groups. It's easy to use and supports multiple players but very few games are compatible.
Price Microsoft Xbox 360 4GB with Kinect bundle Rs 22,990

ALSO READ: XBox drives Microsoft income up 31%

Sony PlayStation 3 Move
This works on a symphony of a motion controller, a wireless wand, and eye-camera placed on the sceen. The camera tracks the move controller which you wag around while exercising, and converts it into gameplay. In the Get Fit with Mel, the former Spice Girl guides you through a workout which is designed for you after you key in details of your endurance level and nutritional background. Its six aerobic routines include the Tae Bo and Disco Aerobics Inferno. Interestingly, the device allows you to incorporate external props like weights and swiss balls in your workout. The remote gives you more control, especially in racket games and boxing. Most games though are designed for a single player.
Price Sony PS3 with Move pack Rs 19,999

Nintendo Wii
The handheld pointing device, the Wii remote, detects movements in 3D. In the Wii Fit Plus game, once you've stepped on the Wii Balance Board your weight and balance is gauged. This is particularly useful for yoga, strength training and aerobics. It is portable but games are difficult to find in India.
Price Nintendo Wii with Wii Sports Rs 13,490

Delhi based sports physiotherapist Ankita Verma prepares you to take on the outdoors with warm up exercises that prevent stiffness and soreness.

Upper Body
Stand with feet comfortably apart and slightly bent knees. Now stretch your arms straight onto the side and back behind you, then bring them way back to the torso, gradually speeding up to the movement. Follow up by placing your hands on your shoulders and do small rotations till your muscles feel loose. Recommended for rock climbing and ayaking

Lower Body
Position your feet a little wider than shoulder width. Now keep your back flat, chest upright and abs uptight to support the lower back and arms in front to counterbalance. Now lower your hips and torso to a comfortable spot and exhale as you stand up. Follow up with elbow knee touches without bending forward at the waist. Recommended for mountain biking and skiing

Front Body Stretch
Stand in front of a opened door and keep on hands on either side of the door. Now lean forward, keeping your arms fixed. Now, do the frog stretch, which involves squatting like a frog with knees pointing out and heels and hands firm on the floor. Recommended for deep sea diving

Back Body Stretch
Exercise the lower back by standing with feet apart and gradually bending till your head is at knee level. Now, touch the opposite hand with the feet and alternate. Recommended for rock climbing. Tip Each exercise shouldn't be for more than one minute in your 15-minute long warm session.

Karaoke has come a long way, from singing rooms in traditional Chinese and Japanese restaurants. Set up your karaoke system at home.

.. What you need If you don't have a karaoke player, use a DVD player with multiple microphone inputs. Since most devices come with a single input, connect it externally through a lead. Traditional speakers can be damaged by the high-frequencies of vocals, so choose ones with sub woofers for low frequencies and tweeters for high sounds. In case you're looking to record performances, use digital mixers. Karaoke versions of popular songs are available online on sites like, and

..Alternatively you can download applications on your Apple devices. The Karaoke Anywhere app has an extensive long library and allows you to record and playback songs for assessing your skills; the iKaraoke on the other hand works on personal mode, ideal for a solo performance. You can also install karaoke softwares like the KaraFun and Walaoke on your laptops. Since Karaoke is about singing in groups, the music needs to be louder or at the same pitch as your voice, use a dock and amplifiers.

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