Playing interactive games like the Nintendo Wii are better for children that traditional computer games, but they're no replacement for the real thing.
This is the main finding in a study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, which finds that children use 50% more energy on Wii games.
The study was conducted to compare the energy expenditure of adolescents when playing sedentary and new-generation active computer games and used six boys and five girls aged 13-15 years.
Participants were fitted with a monitoring device validated to predict energy expenditure and then played four computer games for 15 minutes each.
One of the games was sedentary (Xbox 360) and the other three were active (Wii Sports).
It concluded that playing new-generation active computer games uses significantly more energy than playing sedentary computer games but not as much energy as playing the sport itself.
Importantly, the study reveals that the energy used when playing active Wii Sports games was not of high enough intensity to contribute towards the recommended daily amount of exercise in children.