Can balance in children with cerebral palsy improve through use of an activity promoting computer game?

Technol Health Care. 2012;20(6):501-10. doi: 10.3233/THC-2012-0696.

Abstract

Introduction: This study aimed to evaluate if use of an activity promoting computer game, used in the home (Nintendo Wii Fit; Nintendo Co Ltd, Japan), could influence balance related outcome measures in children with cerebral palsy.

Method: Eighteen children with hemiplegic or diplegic cerebral palsy were recruited for the study. A randomised cross-over design was used with children tested at baseline, after five weeks of playing Wii Fit games and after five weeks without any intervention. Outcome measures of interest included: performance on the modified sensory organisation test, reactive balance test and rhythmic weight shift test.

Results: No significant difference was observed between testing occasions for any of the balance measures investigated (p > 0.05).

Conclusion: Our results suggest that use of a Nintendo Wii balance board and Wii Fit software for a minimum of thirty minutes per day in the patient's own home, over a five week period, is not effective as a balance training tool in children with cerebral palsy.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Cerebral Palsy / rehabilitation*
  • Child
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Postural Balance*
  • Video Games*