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Journal Description

JMIR Serious Games (JSG, ISSN 2291-9279; Impact Factor: 3.351) is a multidisciplinary journal devoted to computer/web/virtual reality/mobile applications that incorporate elements of gaming, gamification or novel hardware platforms such as virtual reality headsets or Microsoft Kinect to solve serious problems such as health behavior change, physical exercise promotion (exergaming), medical rehabilitation, diagnosis and treatment of psychological/psychiatric disorders, medical education, health promotion, teaching and education, or social change. The journal also considers commentary and research in the fields of video games violence and video games addiction.

The journal is indexed in PubMed, PubMed Central, DOAJ, and SCIE/Web of Science, and JCR (Journal Citation Reports) where it received an official impact factor by Clarivate. In June 2019, JSG received an impact factor of 3.351, ranking JSG at the top of all gaming-related academic journals, ahead of (for example) more established competitor journals such as the Games for Health Journal. 

 

Recent Articles:

  • Source: Image created by the Authors; Copyright: The Authors; URL: http://games.jmir.org/2019/4/e13861/; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    Treating Children With Speech Sound Disorders: Development of a Tangible Artefact Prototype

    Abstract:

    Background: A prototype of a tangible user interface (TUI) for a fishing game, which is intended to be used by children with speech sound disorders (SSD), speech and language therapists (SLTs), and kindergarten teachers and assistants (KTAs) and parents alike, has been developed and tested. Objective: The aim of this study was to answer the following question: How can TUIs be used as a tool to help in interventions for children with SSD? Methods: To obtain feedback and to ensure that the prototype was being developed according to the needs of the identified target users, an exploratory test was prepared and carried out. During this test using an ethnographic approach, an observation grid, a semistructured questionnaire, and interviews were used to gather data. A total of 4 different types of stakeholders (sample size of 10) tested the prototype: 2 SLTs, 2 KTAs, and 6 children. Results: The analysis of quantitative and qualitative data revealed that the prototype addresses the existing needs of SLTs and KTAs, and it revealed that 5 out of 6 (83%) children enjoyed the activity. Results also revealed a high replay value, with all children saying they would play more. Conclusions: Serious games and tangible interaction for learning and problem solving serve both teachers and children, as children enjoy playing, and, through a playful approach, learning is facilitated. A clear pattern was observed: Children enjoyed playing, and numerous valid indicators showed the transposition of the traditional game into the TUI artefact was successful. The game is varied and rich enough to be attractive and fun. There is a clear need and interest in similar objects from SLTs and educators. However, the process should be even more iterative, with a multidisciplinary team, and all end users should be able to participate as co-designers.

  • Source: The Authors / Unsplash; Copyright: JMIR Publications; URL: http://games.jmir.org/2019/4/e15974/; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    Effect of Brief Biofeedback via a Smartphone App on Stress Recovery: Randomized Experimental Study

    Abstract:

    Background: Smartphones are often vilified for negatively influencing well-being and contributing to stress. However, these devices may, in fact, be useful in times of stress and, in particular, aid in stress recovery. Mobile apps that deliver evidence-based techniques for stress reduction, such as heart rate variability biofeedback (HRVB) training, hold promise as convenient, accessible, and effective stress-reducing tools. Numerous mobile health apps that may potentially aid in stress recovery are available, but very few have demonstrated that they can influence health-related physiological stress parameters (eg, salivary biomarkers of stress). The ability to recover swiftly from stress and reduce physiological arousal is particularly important for long-term health, and thus, it is imperative that evidence is provided to demonstrate the effectiveness of stress-reducing mobile health apps in this context. Objective: The purpose of this research was to investigate the physiological and psychological effects of using a smartphone app for HRVB training following a stressful experience. The efficacy of the gamified Breather component of the Happify mobile health app was examined in an experimental setting. Methods: In this study, participants (N=140) underwent a laboratory stressor and were randomly assigned to recover in one of three ways: with no phone present, with a phone present, with the HRBV game. Those in the no phone condition had no access to their phone. Those in the phone present condition had their phone but did not use it. Those in the HRVB game condition used the serious game Breather on the Happify app. Stress recovery was assessed via repeated measures of salivary alpha amylase, cortisol, and self-reported acute stress (on a 1-100 scale). Results: Participants in the HRVB game condition had significantly lower levels of salivary alpha amylase during recovery than participants in the other conditions (F2,133=3.78, P=.03). There were no significant differences among the conditions during recovery for salivary cortisol levels or self-reported stress. Conclusions: These results show that engaging in a brief HRVB training session on a smartphone reduces levels of salivary alpha amylase following a stressful experience, providing preliminary evidence for the effectiveness of Breather in improving physiological stress recovery. Given the known ties between stress recovery and future well-being, this study provides a possible mechanism by which gamified biofeedback apps may lead to better health.

  • Source: Image created by the first author using licensed images from FableVision and Adobe Stock; Copyright: The Authors; URL: http://games.jmir.org/2019/4/e16031/; License: Fair use/fair dealings.

    Using Narrative Game Design to Increase Children’s Physical Activity: Exploratory Thematic Analysis

    Abstract:

    Background: Physical activity is crucial for child obesity prevention and intervention. Narratives embedded in active games can increase children’s physical activity. Objective: Little is known about the narrative characteristics that would motivate children to exercise. We attempted to fill the gaps in understanding regarding narrative design for active video games. Methods: In this exploratory study, four animated narratives of different genres were professionally generated. Children (N=41) between the ages of 8 and 12 years were interviewed to identify their preferences. Sessions were digitally recorded, transcribed, and analyzed using exploratory thematic analysis. Results: Findings revealed that the children rated the dystopian science fiction story as their favorite across all weight, race, and gender groups. The physical activity-friendly narrative strategies included virtuous characters, extraordinary character actions, interesting plots, super powers, and engaging cliffhangers. Alternatively, information not related to physical activity, difficult-to-follow plot lines, passive protagonists, and repetitive narrative tropes were less appealing for physical activity. Conclusions: This research provides preliminary evidence that narratives have characteristics that may increase child physical activity when playing active games. Future empirical studies should verify and test these design principles.

  • Source: Image created by the Authors; Copyright: The Authors; URL: https://games.jmir.org/2019/4/e14924; License: Licensed by JMIR.

    A Serious Game–Derived Index for Detecting Children With Heterogeneous Developmental Disabilities: Randomized Controlled Trial

    Abstract:

    Background: Developmental disabilities are a set of heterogeneous delays or difficulties in one or more areas of neuropsychological development. Considering that childhood is an essential stage of brain development and developmental delays lead to personal or social burdens, the early detection of childhood developmental disabilities is important. However, early screening for developmental disabilities has been a challenge because of the fear of positive results, expensive tests, differences in diagnosis depending on examiners’ abilities, and difficulty in diagnosis arising from the need for long-term follow-up observation. Objective: This study aimed to assess the feasibility of using a serious game–derived index to identify heterogeneous developmental disabilities. This study also examines the correlation between the game-derived index and existing neuropsychological test results. Methods: The randomized clinical trial involved 48 children with either normal development or developmental disabilities. In this clinical trial, we used 19 features (6 from the Korean-Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence, 8 from the Psychoeducational Profile Revised, 2 from the Bruininks-Oseretsky Test of Motor Proficiency, Second Edition, and 3 from the Pediatric Evaluation of Disability Inventory) from neuropsychological tests and 9 (7 Game Scores, Path Accuracy, and Completion Rate) from the serious game, DoBrain. The following analysis was conducted based on participants’ baseline information and neuropsychological test and game-derived index data for one week: (1) we compared the baseline information between the ND (Normal Development) and DD groups (Developmental Disabilities); (2) then we measured the correlation between the game-derived index and the neuropsychological test scores for each group; and (3) we built a classifier based on the game-derived index with a Gaussian process method and then compared the area under the curve (AUC) with a model based on neuropsychological test results. Results: A total of 16 children (ND=9; DD=7) were analyzed after selection. Their developmental abilities were assessed before they started to play the serious games, and statistically significant differences were found in both groups. Specifically, the ND group was more developed than the DD group in terms of social function, gross motor function, full-scale IQ, and visual motor imitation, in that order. Similarly, the ND group obtained a higher score on the game-derived index than the DD group. In the correlation analysis between the game-derived index and the neuropsychological tests, the ND group showed greater correlation with more variables than the DD group. The game-derived index–based model had an AUC=0.9, a similar detection value as the neuropsychological test-based model’s AUC=0.86. Conclusions: A game-derived index based on serious games can detect children with heterogenous developmental disabilities. This suggests that serious games can be used as a potential screening tool for developmental disabilities. Clinical Trial: Clinical Research Information Service KCT0003247; https://cris.nih.go.kr/cris/en/search/search_result_st01.jsp?seq=12365

  • Untitled. Source: Image created by the Authors / placeit; Copyright: Image created by the Authors; License: Public Domain (CC0).

    A Game to Deal With Alcohol Abuse (Jib): Development and Game Experience Evaluation

    Abstract:

    Background: Alcohol abuse is the primary cause of (public) health problems in most parts of the world. However, it is undeniable that alcohol consumption is a practice that is widely accepted socially in many places, even being protected by law as a cultural and historical heritage. The issue of alcohol abuse is complex and urgent, and consequently, it is necessary to create innovative approaches such as the proposal explored in this study. Objective: This study aimed to explore the development and evaluation of a serious game for smartphones to present a novel approach to address the issue of alcohol abuse. Methods: A serious game was developed to instill the consequences of alcohol abuse into the player through experimentation in the game. In the game, the consequences of alcohol use are demonstrated by increasing the game speed that gives an illusion of fun but also leads to a premature death. The evaluation employed an assessment based on the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT) and the Game Experience Questionnaire (GEQ). The participants belonged to the university student’s house. Results: The game development process has been presented, including its mechanics and gameplay. The game has the style of action and adventure games in which the player controls an indigenous avatar that can deflect or attack opponents coming his or her way. The game evaluation comprised an assessment based on 23 participants, aged 20 to 29 years. According to the AUDIT assessment, 18 participants reported having a low or nonexistent degree of alcohol dependence and 5 declared average dependence. Regarding their habit of playing games on smartphones, 9 participants declared they have this habit of playing (H), and among the 14 that did not have this habit of playing (NH), 3 participants declared not having a smartphone at all. The GEQ core assessment showed a higher positive affect among the participants with a habit of playing games, scoring 2.80 (H) on a scale of 4.0 versus 1.61 (NH), and higher tension as an opposite relationship of 0.81 (NH) versus 0.37 (H). The overall GEQ evaluation showed that the game presents a more positive than negative affect on all users, besides showing the other desirable characteristics of serious games. Conclusions: We present a new way of dealing with the issue of alcohol abuse through a game designed for smartphones. It promotes an overall positive user experience, having a greater impact on users accustomed to games. The proposed approach has its niche, though it is still a minority in the evaluated population. Further research should explore new game features, such as new styles, to make the game more attractive to a wider audience, in addition to performing an in-depth study on the effects of playing it.

  • Triumf (montage). Source: The Authors / Smartmockups / Pixabay; Copyright: The Authors; URL: https://games.jmir.org/2019/3/e13776; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    Usability, Acceptability, Feasibility, and Effectiveness of a Gamified Mobile Health Intervention (Triumf) for Pediatric Patients: Qualitative Study

    Abstract:

    Background: Mental disorders are notably prevalent in children with chronic illnesses, whereas a lack of access to psychological support might lead to potential mental health problems or disruptions in treatment. Digitally delivered psychological interventions have shown promising results as a supportive treatment measure for improving health outcomes during chronic illness. Objective: This study aimed to evaluate the usability, acceptability, and feasibility of providing psychological and treatment support in a clinical setting via a mobile game environment. In addition, the study aimed to evaluate the preliminary effectiveness of the mobile health game. Methods: Patients aged 7 to 14 years with less than a year from their diagnosis were eligible to participate in the study. In total, 15 patients were invited to participate by their doctor. A total of 9 patients (age range: 7-12 years; mean age 9.1 years) completed the 60-day-long study in which the Triumf mobile health game was delivered as a digital intervention. In an engaging game environment, patients were offered psychological and treatment support, cognitive challenges, and disease-specific information. The fully digital intervention was followed by a qualitative interview conducted by a trained psychologist. The results of the interview were analyzed in conjunction with patient specific in-game qualitative data. Ethical approval was obtained to conduct the study. Results: Patients positively perceived the game, resulting in high usability and acceptability evaluations. Participants unanimously described the game as easy to use and engaging in terms of gamified activities, while also providing beneficial and trustworthy information. Furthermore, the overall positive evaluation was emphasized by an observed tendency to carry on gaming post study culmination (67%, 10/15). Psychological support and mini games were the most often used components of the game, simultaneously the participants also highlighted the education module as one of the most preferred. On average, the patients sought and received psychological support or education on 66.6 occasions during the 60-day intervention. Participants spent the most time collecting items from the city environment (on average 15.6 days, SD 8.1), indicative of exploratory behavior, based on the quantitative in-game collected data. During the intervention period, we observed a statistically significant decrease in general health problems (P=.003) and saw a trend toward a decrease in depression and anxiety symptoms. Conclusions: This study demonstrated that a game environment could be a promising medium for delivering comprehensive supportive care to pediatric patients with cancer alongside standard treatment, with potential application across a variety of chronic conditions. Importantly, the results indicate that the study protocol was feasible with modifications to randomized controlled trials, and the game could be considered applicable in a clinical context. By giving an empirical evaluation of delivering psychological support via the game environment, our work stands to inform future mobile health interventions.

  • A 3D serious game to teach clinical history-taking content to medical students. Source: The Authors / Placeit; Copyright: JMIR Publications; URL: https://games.jmir.org/2019/3/e13748; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    Impact of Using a 3D Visual Metaphor Serious Game to Teach History-Taking Content to Medical Students: Longitudinal Mixed Methods Pilot Study

    Abstract:

    Background: History taking is a key component of clinical practice; however, this skill is often poorly performed by students and doctors. Objective: The study aimed to determine whether Metaphoria, a 3D serious game (SG), is superior to another electronic medium (PDF text file) in learning the history-taking content of a single organ system (cardiac). Methods: In 2015, a longitudinal mixed methods (quantitative and qualitative) pilot study was conducted over multiple sampling time points (10 weeks) on a group of undergraduate medical students at The University of Auckland Medical School, New Zealand. Assessors involved in the study were blinded to group allocation. From an initial sample of 83, a total of 46 medical students were recruited. Participants were assigned to either a PDF group (n=19) or a game group (n=27). In total, 1 participant left the PDF group after allocation was revealed and was excluded. A total of 24 students in the game group and 14 students in the PDF group completed follow-up 7 weeks later. Using an iterative design process for over a year, with input from a variety of clinical disciplines, a cardiac history-taking game and PDF file were designed and informed by Cognitive Load Theory. Each group completed its intervention in 40 min. A total of 3 levels of Kirkpatrick training evaluation model were examined using validated questionnaires: affective (perception and satisfaction), cognitive (knowledge gains and cognitive load), and behavioral attitudes (Objective Structured Clinical Exam) as well as qualitative assessment. A priori hypotheses were formulated before data collection. Results: Compared with baseline, both groups showed significant improvement in knowledge and self-efficacy longitudinally (P<.001). Apart from the game group having a statistically significant difference in terms of satisfaction (P<.001), there were no significant differences between groups in knowledge gain, self-efficacy, cognitive load, ease of use, acceptability, or objective structured clinical examination scores. However, qualitative findings indicated that the game was more engaging and enjoyable, and it served as a visual aid compared with the PDF file. Conclusions: Students favored learning through utilization of an SG with regard to cardiac history taking. This may be relevant to other areas of medicine, and this highlights the importance of innovative methods of teaching the next generation of medical students.

  • Using virtual reality to fly. Source: Flickr; Copyright: Marco Verch; URL: https://www.flickr.com/photos/149561324@N03/44132092762/in/photolist-Nj2uZc-P85fLA-9M2QU4-ikv77h-2aeNvD5-TbQgPY-YxJy4d-YxJAas-YNZxti-RrLMqF-YxJuS3-YNZBy2-YNZAi6-YxJzgJ-YcQtBy-YxJzGd-YxJzTA-FHdvEQ-GneJCZ-Lg85eL-2gazB3Q; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    Effects of Full Body Exergaming in Virtual Reality on Cardiovascular and Muscular Parameters: Cross-Sectional Experiment

    Abstract:

    Background: In recent years, many studies have associated sedentary behavior in front of screens with health problems in infants, children, and adolescents. Yet options for exergaming—playing video games that require rigorous physical exercise—seem to fall short of the physical activity levels recommended by the World Health Organization. Objective: The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of a fully immersive virtual reality (VR)-based training system on cardiovascular and muscular parameters of young adults. Methods: A cross-sectional experiment design was used to analyze muscle activity (surface electromyography), heart rate, perceived exertion (RPE), cybersickness symptoms, perceived workload, and physical activity enjoyment (PACES) in 33 participants performing two 5-minute flights on a new training device. Results: Participants’ performance of the planking position required to play the game resulted in moderate aerobic intensity (108 [SD 18.69] bpm). Due to the mainly isometric contraction of the dorsal muscle chain (with a mean activation between 20.6% [SD 10.57] and 26.7% [SD 17.39] maximum voluntary isometric contraction), participants described the exercise as a moderate to vigorous activity (RPE 14.6 [SD 1.82]). The majority reported that they enjoyed the exercise (PACES 3.74 [SD 0.16]). However, six participants had to drop out because of cybersickness symptoms and two because of muscle pain due to prior injuries. Conclusions: Our findings suggest that fully immersive VR training systems can contribute to muscle-strengthening activities for healthy users. However, the dropout rate highlights the need for technological improvements in both software and hardware. In prevention and therapy, movement quality is a fundamental part of providing effective resistance training that benefits health. Exergaming on a regular basis has the potential to develop strong muscles and a healthy back. It is essential that future VR-based training systems take into account the recommendations of sport and exercise science.

  • Source: Flickr; Copyright: Sam Blackman; URL: https://www.flickr.com/photos/samblackman/2141253903/in/photolist-bUVBs8-7t1MUr-4codUW-4gdubK-7YH7vN-cchYTW-4x81W3-8GHn8V-6KCgW9-gXHTq-gXHU1-gXHRQ-gXHNK-gXHNp-xMWaW-dmQd16-c53oCb-23M2puP-7RuUbq-bvHRcJ-gXHLs-Wozb1o-gtxNCb-gtxmgn-4DsQNZ-chS92Y-cgc9CJ-3bir5s; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    An Epiduroscopy Simulator Based on a Serious Game for Spatial Cognitive Training (EpiduroSIM): User-Centered Design Approach

    Abstract:

    Background: Performing high-level surgeries with endoscopy is challenging, and hence, an efficient surgical training method or system is required. Serious game–based simulators can provide a trainee-centered educational environment unlike traditional teacher-centered education environments since serious games provide a high level of interaction (feedback that induces learning). Methods: EpiduroSIM was designed based on a serious game. For spatial cognitive training, the virtual environment of EpiduroSIM was modeled based on a cognitive map. Results: EpiduroSIM was developed considering user accessibility to provide various functions. The experiment for the validation of EpiduroSIM focused on psychological fidelity and repetitive training effects. The experiments were conducted by dividing 16 specialists into 2 groups of 8 surgeons. The group was divided into beginner and expert based on their epiduroscopy experience. The psychological fidelity of EpiduroSIM was confirmed through the training results of the expert group rather than the beginner group. In addition, the repetitive training effect of EpiduroSIM was confirmed by improving the training results in the beginner group. Conclusions: EpiduroSIM may be useful for training beginner surgeons in epiduroscopy.

  • An emergency physician using the virtual environment. Source: Charles-Henri Houzé-Cerfon; Copyright: Charles-Henri; URL: http://games.jmir.org/2019/3/e13993/; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    Development and Evaluation of a Virtual Research Environment to Improve Quality of Care in Overcrowded Emergency Departments: Observational Study

    Abstract:

    Background: Despite a wide range of literature on emergency department (ED) overcrowding, scientific knowledge on emergency physicians’ cognitive processes coping with overcrowding is limited. Objective: This study aimed to develop and evaluate a virtual research environment that will allow us to study the effect of physicians’ strategies and behaviors on quality of care in the context of ED overcrowding. Methods: A simulation-based observational study was conducted over two stages: the development of a simulation model and its evaluation. A research environment in emergency medicine combining virtual reality and simulated patients was designed and developed. Afterwards, 12 emergency physicians took part in simulation scenarios and had to manage 13 patients during a 2-hour period. The study outcome was the authenticity of the environment through realism, consistency, and mastering. The realism was the resemblance perceived by the participants between virtual and real ED. The consistency of the scenario and the participants’ mastering of the environment was expected for 90% (12/13) of the participants. Results: The virtual ED was considered realistic with no significant difference from the real world with respect to facilities and resources, except for the length of time of procedures that was perceived to be shorter. A total of 100% (13/13) of participants deemed that patient information, decision making, and managing patient flow were similar to real clinical practice. The virtual environment was well-mastered by all participants over the course of the scenarios. Conclusions: The new simulation tool, Virtual Research Environment in Emergency Medicine, has been successfully designed and developed. It has been assessed as perfectly authentic by emergency physicians compared with real EDs and thus offers another way to study human factors, quality of care, and patient safety in the context of ED overcrowding.

  • The exergaming group performed exercise using Exerheart devices with permission from D&J Humancare, who is the copyright holder of Exerheart. Source: Image created by the Authors; Copyright: The Authors; URL: http://games.jmir.org/2019/3/e13575/; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    Exergaming Improves Executive Functions in Patients With Metabolic Syndrome: Randomized Controlled Trial

    Abstract:

    Background: Recent studies indicate that participation in exercise-related games can improve executive function, attention processing, and visuospatial skills. Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate whether exercise via exergaming (EXG) can improve executive function in patients with metabolic syndrome (MetS). Methods: A total of 22 MetS patients were recruited and randomly assigned to an EXG group or a treadmill exercise (TE) group. The reaction time (RT) and electrophysiological signals from the frontal (Fz), central (Cz), and parietal (Pz) cortices were collected during a Stroop task after 12 weeks of exercise. Results: During the Stroop congruence (facilitation) judgment task, both the EXG and TE groups showed significantly faster RT after 12 weeks of exercise training. For N200 amplitude, the EXG group demonstrated significantly increased electrophysiological signals from the Fz and Cz cortices. These changes were significantly larger in the EXG group than in the TE group. Separately, for the P300 amplitude, the EXG groups presented significantly increased electrophysiological signals from the Fz, Cz, and Pz cortices, whereas the TE group showed significantly increased electrophysiological signals from the Cz and Pz cortices only. During the Stroop incongruence (interference) judgment task, both the EXG and TE groups showed significantly faster RT. For P300 amplitude, the EXG group had significantly increased electrophysiological signals from the Fz and Cz cortices only, whereas the TE group had significantly increased electrophysiological signals from the Fz, Cz, and Pz cortices. Conclusions: EXG improves executive function in patients with MetS as much as normal aerobic exercise does. In particular, a unique benefit of EXG beyond increased aerobic capacity is the improved selective attention among cognitive functions. Thus, EXG could be recommended to someone who needs to improve their brain responses of concentration and judgment as well as physical fitness. Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT04015583; https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT04015583

  • Source: Flickr; Copyright: SymGym Exergaming; URL: https://www.flickr.com/photos/126077948@N05/14720721138/; License: Creative Commons Attribution + Noncommercial + NoDerivatives (CC-BY-NC-ND).

    Factors Associated with Sustained Exergaming: Longitudinal Investigation

    Abstract:

    Background: Exergaming is technology-driven physical activity (PA) which, unlike traditional video game play, requires that participants be physically active to play the game. Exergaming may have potential to increase PA and decrease sedentary behavior in youth, but little is known about sustained exergaming. Objective: The objectives of this study were to describe the frequency, correlates, and predictors of sustained exergaming. Methods: Data were available in AdoQuest (2005-11), a longitudinal investigation of 1843 grade 5 students in Montréal, Canada. This analysis used data from grade 9 (2008-09) and 11 (2010-11). Participants at Time 1 (T1; mean age 14 years, SD 0.8 ) who reported past-week exergaming (n=186, 19.1% of AdoQuest sample) completed mailed self-report questionnaires at Time 2 (T2; mean age 16 years, SD 0.8). Independent sociodemographic, psychological, and behavioral correlates (from T2)/predictors (from T1 or earlier) were identified using multivariable logistic regression. Results: Of 186 exergamers at T1, 81 (44%) reported exergaming at T2. Being female and having higher introjected regulation (ie, a type of PA motivation indicative of internalizing PA as a behavior) were independent correlates. None of the predictors investigated were associated with sustained exergaming. Conclusions: Almost half of grade 9 exergamers sustained exergaming for 2 years. Exergaming may be a viable approach to help adolescents engage in and sustain PA during adolescence. Sex and PA motivation may be important in the sustainability of exergaming.

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  • The influence of age on learning ability of new cognitive tasks. An ecological study using Cognitive Mobile Games.

    Date Submitted: Nov 19, 2019

    Open Peer Review Period: Nov 19, 2019 - Jan 14, 2020

    Background: The decline of cognitive function is an important issue related to aging. Over the last few years, numerous apps and games have been developed to challenge the brain with cognitive exercis...

    Background: The decline of cognitive function is an important issue related to aging. Over the last few years, numerous apps and games have been developed to challenge the brain with cognitive exercises. However, little is currently known about the potential of these types of interventions to impact cognition positively. Objective: The objective of this study was to analyze changes in the scores of Cognitive Mobile Games (CMG) over a period of training to learn about the level of score improvement that participants of different ages can reach, as a measure of the learning ability of new cognitive tasks. Methods: Scores from 9000 subjects of different ages obtained for 7 CMG were analysed over a period of 100 training sessions. Results of the first session were compared between age groups using one-way ANOVA and mixed models were used to subsequently investigate the progression of scores over the 100 sessions. Results: Statistically significant differences were found between the age groups for the initial scores of 6 of the 7 games. We observed that CMG scores increased for all participants, suggesting that all participants were able to improve their performance in new cognitive tasks. The rate of the score increase was however strongly influenced by the age of the participants with slower progression for more aged participants. Conclusions: The current study provides two interesting insights: 1) users who train with the games improve regardless of age, suggesting that even older adults can learn new skills using mobile technology; 2) Use of CMG appears to be a sensitive method to assess changes in the cognitive function with advancing age and could be a convenient way to monitor cognitive function during long term follow-up. Clinical Trial: NA

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