Wii "fit" for balance rehabilitation and Balance Assessment.

This page is primarily intended to be a reference for patients who have been referred for vestibular therapy. 

Timothy C. Hain, MD• Page last modified: July 30, 2022

The Nintendo "Wii" is a video-gaming device that has been used as an adjunct to vestibular rehabilitation therapy. The "Wii" is very well suited to rehabilitation because rather than interacting with a computer keyboard or "mouse", users wave around a "Wii-mote" (see image below left) which is shown on the TV as something actually moving - -such as a tennis racket, etc. The "Wii-fit" program is a recent addition to the "Wii" stable of programs, and incorporates a balance board that can be used for training.

This device was popular in the late 2000's, and there are now newer similar devices that may be more important. There is a substantial literature documenting that the Wii impoves balance (e.g. Morrison et al, 2018; Jahn et al, 2018; Gomes et al, 2018).

The same device can also be used for balance assessment with good results (e.g. Clark et al, 2018; Mengarelli et al, 2018).

nintendo wii

 

Balance games include

wii-balance wii-balance
Wii Balance board Person standing on balance board

There are always safety issues with balancing exercises, and this device is no exception.

One of our patients who had had a labyrinthectomy for Meniere's disease wrote to us:

References: