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Video Games Finally Get Credit

Aug 17, 2007
Video games have really received a lot of negative press in the years since they have become so popular. They have a reputation of creating zombies out of kids, teenagers, and sometimes even grown adults.

Now, we're not saying that never happens, but we think it's time for video games to get the credit that they deserve. It is finally becoming known that there are a few really exciting ways that video games are helping people and their enriching their lives.

It seems that the skills needed to play games are similar to the skills needed to perform laparoscopic surgery. In a new, very small study recently published, surgeons who at one time in their lives played up to 3 hours of video games a week made 37% fewer errors in the simulated laparoscopic surgeries performed during the study.

They were also faster and better overall than the other surgeons who played less than that amount or none at all. This is not a definitive study but it is definitely an exciting development that will be followed by researchers for further progress.

Another study which is currently being performed is using Virtual Reality Therapy with soldiers that suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). It is estimated that 20% of American soldiers who have returned from Iraq suffer with PTSD.

A game that has been created and modified from the Xbox game, Full Spectrum Warrior, is being used to help soldiers face their fears with similar landscapes, scenes, and even smells that resemble what they experienced in the Middle East. The psychologist that has created this therapy is not making any grand claims at this point but is very hopeful for continued future success.

One female soldier that has completed this form of therapy has continued to see improvements three months after receiving the therapy.

Another way that video games are beneficial is in fitness. A Canadian fitness company is now hooking interactive games up to exercise machines.

This facility is geared specifically toward teens. You can pedal and steer your way into victory against friends through playing the game on your stationary bike. The bike is connected to a biking PlayStation game and the pedals and handlebars give you movement and steering in the game.

This is a truly inventive way to marry teenagers' love for electronics with physical activity.

So the next time your son isn't able to tear himself away from Madden football to fully answer your questions, remind yourself that he just might be in training for surgery!
About the Author
David Stargel publishes a Madden Football video game related website in addition to writing about all sorts of video game related topics.
Hear the latest Madden news at Madden Football Central
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