Best Games To Help Shed Those Extra Holiday Pounds
The Hip Hop Dance Experience (360, Wii)
If the song “Call Me Maybe” brings tears to your eyes and the very thought of performing dance moves to a Justin Beiber track sounds like a nightmare, then Ubisoft’s other dance title The Hip Hop Dance Experience may better suit your taste. Unlike previous entries that focused on a library of songs from a particular artist (Michael Jackson) or group (The Black Eye Peas), players get to enjoy songs from a variety of hip-hop and rap artist as they attempt to master over 750 dance moves. Mastering these moves will unlock hundreds of new looks and accessories for their on screen avatar. Those a bit hesitant about the graphic lyrics of some of these tracks – namely Lil Wayne’s Lollipop – will be pleased to know that each song is censored similar to the radio-friendly versions. Although you won’t be able to track your progress like Just Dance 4 and Dance Central 3 there is a Dance Marathon mode – an endless stream of tracks to keep the score moving, or it’s Game Over.
Headlock Tip: Hip hop dancing is considered an aerobic and cardiovascular exercise. Break a sweat and extend your duration, shoot for 3 hours a week for an impressive burn of over 1000 calories.
Just Dance 4 (360, PS3, Wii, Wii U)
Released in 2009 for the Nintendo Wii, Ubisoft’s Just Dance quickly became the fastest selling third-party game for the console. Their latest entry Just Dance 4 poses some similarities to Dance Central 3, but where it really stands out is in the Just Sweat mode. Each of the five routines, whether it’s “Cheerleaders Boot Camp” or “Swinging 60′s Workout,” will have players busting out the latest dance moves while incorporating basic exercise moves to mix things up a bit. Similar to classes you might take at the gym, Just Dance 4‘s timed routines follow a basic pattern of “Warm-Up → Dance → Workout → Dance → Cool Down.” Reaching your weekly goal is tracked with “Sweat Points.” It’s simple, the more intense and complicated the workout, the more “Sweat Points” you will earn. With a diverse song list, and the recently added Gangnam Style (also available for Dance Central 3), players will be on their way to being a sexy lady – or man.
Headlock Tip: Aim for 50 – 80% of your Maximum Heart Rate (MHR) to burn fat. How? Subtract your age from 220 (i.e. 220 – 25yrs = 195 beats per minute (BPM). Target between 97 and 156 BPM). Now shake that tail.
Kinect Sports 1 & 2 (360)
Wii Sports brought full motion sports titles into the forefront, but after countless Wii remotes flew out of our sweaty hands (we are rebels, we don’t believe in straps) we yearned for a controller-free experience. Rare came to the rescue with the Kinect Sports series and gave us a large variety of events to make us never want to go outside again. Whether it was boxing, football, tennis, or bbowling; the Kinect Sports series had something for everyone. But if players really wanted to get a great workout than participating in the Track and Field pentathlon from Kinetic Sports 1 was the event of choice. Players must jog on the spot to run, jump to clear hurdles or make a long jump, and perform the relevant arm motion to throw a javelin or discus. Kinect Sports Season Two introduced Challenge Play to Xbox LIVE allowing players to get personal in a one-on-one showdown with their family and friends, or send a challenges over Xbox Live.
Headlock Tip: Crank up the theme to Rocky and go out swinging with Boxing. All it takes is 5 rounds or 24 minutes, three to four times a week, to get into fighting shape.