Efficient and Effective Change Principles in Active Videogames

L.M. Straker, A.A. Fenner, E.K. Howie, D.L. Feltz, C.M. Gray, A.S. Lu, F. Mueller, M. Simons, L.M. Barnett

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Active videogames have the potential to enhance population levels of physical activity but have not been successful in achieving this aim to date. This article considers a range of principles that may be important to the design of effective and efficient active videogames from diverse discipline areas, including behavioral sciences (health behavior change, motor learning, and serious games), business production (marketing and sales), and technology engineering and design (human-computer interaction/ergonomics and flow). Both direct and indirect pathways to impact on population levels of habitual physical activity are proposed, along with the concept of a game use lifecycle. Examples of current active and sedentary electronic games are used to understand how such principles may be applied. Furthermore, limitations of the current usage of theoretical principles are discussed. A suggested list of principles for best practice in active videogame design is proposed along with suggested research ideas to inform practice to enhance physical activity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-52
JournalGames for Health
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015


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