Building a Better Mousetrap (Exergame) to Increase Youth Physical Activity

Tom Baranowski*, Ralph Maddison, Ann Maloney, Ernie Medina, Monique Simons

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


Although exergames have been demonstrated to induce moderate levels of physical activity (PA) if played as designed, there is conflicting evidence on use of exergaming leading to increased habitual PA. Exergames have increased PA in some home and school studies, but not others. Exergames have been used in community centers to good effect, but this has not generally been validated with research. PA from exergames may be enhanced by innovative use of sensors, "fun"-enhancing procedures, tailored messaging, message framing, story or narrative, goal setting, feedback, and values-based messaging. Research is needed on PA-enhancing procedures used within exergames for youth to provide a firmer foundation for the design and use of exergames in the future.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)72-78
Number of pages7
JournalGames for Health Journal
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2014
Externally publishedYes


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