A Wii bit of help for couch potatoes

A PERSONAL trainer has become the first fitness expert to help couch potatoes shed the pounds by playing computer games.

Zander Urquhart, 32, is conducting classes using the Wii for clients desperate to get fit. His idea has been so successful he has a four-week waiting list.

The Nintendo console allows up to four people to exercise using a controller as a tennis racket, baseball bat, golf club or boxing gloves.

Mr Urquhart, from Glasgow, decided to use the Wii after hearing claims from university experts that users could burn 125 calories in a 15-minute session.

He said: "I was watching this five-year-old who needed encouragement to do any exercise, but here he was for half an hour, running about playing tennis, boxing and baseball and working up a sweat. I started thinking about how useful this could be for other groups."

Mr Urquhart initially aimed the Wii classes at children but soon realised that adults were as keen as their children.

A study by Liverpool John Moores University found regular use of a Wii could help shift 27lb a year.

A Nintendo UK spokesman said: "We're not aware of anyone else doing this, but it shows what the Wii can be used for."

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