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Nintendo and the American Heart Association team up



In another reminder of how video gaming has left its previous pasty-faced, couch-bound image far behind, the console and game maker Nintendo yesterday announced a partnership with the American Heart Association (AHA) designed to promote physically active gaming as part of a healthier lifestyle.

With the introduction of the Wii in 2006, Nintendo has long been seen as a leader in opening up video gaming to the whole family and introducing games that require active play. Realizing that traditional methods of getting kids to exercise were no longer working, the AHA approached Nintendo and proposed that some Wii's games become officially approved ways to stay fit and healthy.

As part of the deal, Nintendo will donate $1.5 million to the AHA and, going forward, all newly purchased Wii consoles will carry the AHA-approved sticker, as will two of the most popular Wii games – Wii Fit Plus and Wii Sports Resort.

Active-play Nintendo games will be present at select AHA Start! Heart Walk events and Nintendo and the AHA will co-host an Innovation Summit that will take a closer look at the synergies and benefits of active-play video games.

"Our two organizations come from different worlds, but we share a common goal," said AHA president Dr. Clyde Yancy in a press release. "Nintendo has demonstrated clear leadership in active-play video games with the popularity of the Wii system, and I'm confident that together we can encourage Americans to become more physically active."

Recent research has found that nearly 70 percent of Americans are getting no regular physical activity and the AHA is looking at ways that they can change the worrying trend. For Nintendo, the relationship with the AHA will continue its remarkable headway with consumer groups that have not been traditional targets for the video gaming industry.

More information is available at the Active Play Now web site.



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