When "Pokemon Go" launched last year, it became so viral that many players walked or traveled for miles even just to catch some Pokemon. Although that must have looked like an exercise in futility, a study discovered that the viral mobile game actually has health benefits.
Smartphones are usually considered as evil because they cause people to be sedentary. However, Niantic's mobile game "Pokemon Go" proves itself to be different from its counterparts. That is because instead of having people sitting around all day fiddling with their phones, it requires its players to walk around. And as Time wrote, its real world exploration requirement has driven people to walk more as an exercise.
At a recent American Heart Association meeting, a group of researchers presented the findings in their study regarding "Pokemon Go." They found out that players of the game are more likely to be able to meet the minimum daily goal of 10,000 steps than those who do not. They also said that the game can potentially promote physical activity. That is because no Pokemon trainer can be the best if they stay cooped up. Niantic's popular game drives them outside the comforts of their home just so they could catch powerful and even rare species.
The study conducted by Duke Health also found that players who enjoy the health benefits of "Pokemon Go" more are those who were less physically active or were overweight before they played the game. BGR also noted that these players added 3,000 more steps to their daily exercise. The researchers, therefore, concluded that people are willing to become more physically active if exercises were done in a more engaging manner.
For the study on the health benefits of "Pokemon Go," Duke Health enlisted the help of 167 players who used iPhone devices to play the game. Next, the researchers asked them to fill up an online survey. Furthermore, they asked the players to share the record of their steps, which the iPhone Health app took note of.