back to article Wii Balance Board good aid for doctors, study finds

The Wii Balance Board (BB) peripheral could provide doctors with a cost-effective way of assessing a patient’s ability to stand up straight, a report has concluded. Medics from the University of Melbourne and Singapore General Hospital’s Department of Physiotherapy together tested Nintendo’s £70 accessory as a way of assessing …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    Blinding with science

    "force platforms – high-tech scales that measure ground reaction forces created when someone stands on them"

    I thought the article was generally sensible, but couldn't let this bit of technobabble pass without comment. All weighing machines measure ground reaction forces.

    The feature of the high-tech ones is that they measure the forces at several points of contact.

  2. David Edwards

    Inexpensive £70

    "The Wii was connected to a laptop and its COP readout "

    So thats £70 for the board

    £150+ for the WII

    £300 + for the laptop

    £?? for support instaltion maintenence

    Isnt TCO a bummer

    How much are those sclaes again??????????

    1. Lee Chong Yew

      RE: Inexpensive £70

      > How much are those sclaes again??????????

      Some US$10 or so last I checked.

      I agree. Maybe Nintendo gave that guy the stuff for free, that's why it's inexpensive...

  3. Elmer Phud

    and for the cops?

    Howsabout (now then, now then) the police using them for sobriety tests?

    None of yer walking a stright line, pointing to yer nose etc. etc.

    "Right then, Sir. Just step on here and maintain this yoga pose for more than ten seconds"

  4. James Pickett


    This is worth pursuing, surely? Give every patient a ‘Mii’ (carefully!) and it will track their weight, BMI, balancing skill and even work out their fitness ‘age’. Mind you, I think it stops at 70...

  5. Anonymous Coward

    Okay, this sounds okay

    If the old BB _is_ similar to the full blown (/expensive?) test gear then it seems pretty sensible - to me at least - to consider it as an alternative. I'm assuming that Nintendo will give a good discount for the medical use, (since you'll need the Wii as well) - and presumably someone'll do some proper software for GP's - I think there might be some raised eyebrows if the Doc asks you to log into "Wii Fit"!

    Speaking of software - why stop at balance checks, do a simplified urine analysis sensor. Presumably in that case the accompanying software would be "Wii ... Into-this-cup-please"!

    (AC because of that last paragraph)

  6. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    No need for a WII

    You don't need a Wii, the balance board is just a bluetooth device like the Wii controller.

    There are free libraries for windows and Linux to use it directly, you can also use the hand controller as a mouse.

    And it's only $70 with the old game - $90 with the new fitness+.

  7. Lu

    according to /.

    This is second hand info, but according to a couple of different commentors over on Slashdot, those specialised force scales cost thousands of dollars (US).

  8. Simon B

    I CAN rip you off therefore I WILL!

    "Doctors often use force platforms – high-tech scales that measure ground reaction forces created when someone stands on them — but most are expensive ..."

    "intendo’s BB, however, is “inexpensive ..."

    Conclusion: doctors have been ripped off by greedy bastard manuafacturers, because they make a set of scales that are simple but only they make, they rip people off, because they CAN.

    A similar thing happens in many areas of life. Bastards.

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