This study evaluated the effects of exergaming on college students’ energy expenditure (EE), moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA), light physical activity (LPA), rating of perceived exertion (RPE), and enjoyment compared to traditional treadmill exercise, and sex differences. Sixty college students (30 female; Xage = 23.6 ± 4.1 years) completed three 20-min exercise sessions on Xbox 360 Kinect Just Dance (Microsoft, Redmond, WA, USA), Xbox 360 Kinect Reflex Ridge (Microsoft, Redmond, WA, USA), and treadmill walking. Their EE and PA were assessed by ActiGraph accelerometers (ActiGraph Co.; Pensacola, FL, USA); RPE every four min; enjoyment via an established scale. Significant exercise-type by sex interaction effects were observed for RPE (p < 0.01): females reported significantly lower RPE during exergaming sessions but significantly higher RPE during treadmill walking. Results revealed significant main effects for all outcomes between exercise sessions (all p < 0.01): treadmill walking resulted in significantly higher metabolic equivalents (METs), MVPA, and EE (p < 0.01), yet lower LPA (p < 0.01), compared to the two exergaming sessions. Participants’ RPE was significantly higher during treadmill walking than during exergaming sessions, with exergaming eliciting significantly higher enjoyment (all p < 0.01). College students find exergaming more enjoyable and report lower RPE compared to traditional treadmill exercise, though not yet matching the moderate physiological intensity level.
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- Active video games
- Acute exercise
- Physical activity
- Physical fitness