Pokemon Go Formerly Touted Fitness Benefits, But Now…

Unless you have been living under a rock you will likely have heard of Pokemon Go, a video game designed for mobile devices that was modeled after game series of the same name which has retained massive popularity since the 90s. During the game’s release in early July of 2016 the sentimentality surrounding the franchise’s charm as well as the game’s interactive, location based game-play rocketed it to massive success. Given that players actually had to move around in real life to capture the bizarre, cartoonish creatures within the game, many people began remarking that the game was having a extremely positive side-effect – weight loss. People got so excited about the game’s purported fitness boons that this became a cornerstone of it’s marketing.


However, Pokemon Go’s health benefits have been wildly exaggerated according to a study carried out by the British Medical Journal (which can be found here: http://www.bmj.com/content/355/bmj.i6270) which studied adults in the United States of America, ages 18 to 35 years old. The study found that slightly over 47% of the participants walked around 4256 steps per day before they played the game. After acquiring the game and during the first week following it, these same players experienced an increase in steps per day of 955. However, this boost in activity gradually waned until it dropped off entirely by the sixth week of play. This data was counterbalanced by a control group who were observed walking but did not install nor play Pokemon Go.


It should be here noted that there were a select few individuals whose walking habits were affected in the long term. However, these individuals were so few and far between that they hardly registered in the percentage total.


So, to re-cap, what we have learned from this study is that Pokemon Go produces only nominal changes in behaviors which last the span of around only seven weeks in total. That being said, much of this merely has to do with individuals having the drive to actually go out and get moving, it’s a statistical average and not a hard and fast rule. So if you are looking to lose some weight with Pokemon Go you can certainly do so as long as you treat it with the same regimented dedication as the weight lifter would his trips to the gym.