Game Reviews: Exercising with DDR and Just Dance

Posted: January 14, 2012 in General
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

A couple of days ago I wrote a post about how I lost 30 pounds playing video games. Today I wanted to review the video games and try to convince you that just about anyone can use them in order to do the same thing.

(Please note that I’m writing this as an owner of a Wii.)

Dance Dance Revolution: Hottest Party 3

Materials: dance pad (controller is optional)

Basics: to tap the arrows with your feet in time with the scrolling arrows on the screen

Difficulty Level : easy


This game in particular is good for people with all sorts of dancing abilities. To play this you do need some rhythm, but there are four difficulties overall, making it very easy to start out slow and gain expertise. With DDR, practice definitely makes perfect. Please note that this game will not teach you how to dance. (Rats!)

As far as the actual software goes, I had some trouble in the beginning with the dance pad continually scrolling through songs. I eventually had to exchange it, but everything works perfectly now. The pad can still be very sensitive, but I just step off of it when I’m not dancing and use the controller to choose songs. I bought a secondary pad that’s a little bit different in style than the original one and although it works just fine, I prefer the first one.

Game play is very fun and there are several options you can choose from. You can pick songs and dance, participate in a competition, or even go along with one of their exercise routines. The different levels of difficulty make this more competitive and challenging. There are lots of songs to choose from and there are a variety of genres. As an added bonus, some of the songs play the music video while you dance.

When it comes to exercise, this is a great game for cardio/aerobic workout. You’ll be able to strengthen your legs and calves a little bit, but not much else.

Just Dance 2

Materials: controller

Basics: hold the controller and dance like the people on the screen

Difficulty Level : medium


This game is a little more challenging than DDR as it actually requires you to dance. This is less about being in rhythm, and more about copying the moves you see on the screen. It requires more skill than the other game. Unfortunately, you don’t have the option to choose difficulty levels on this one, so it might take some floundering before you get good at it.

Software for this one is pretty basic, as you only need the controller. Sometimes I feel like I complete the moves correctly, but the game doesn’t necessarily pick up on that.

This game is also pretty fun. There are some really good songs and moves, but there are a few duds, too. You’re score from a red “x” (which means you didn’t do the move at all), to an “ok,” to a “good,” and finally a “perfect.” This is good because it allows you to get partial credit, so to speak, but I also feel like sometimes you get less than you deserve. There aren’t so many options on this game as there are on DDR, and I only play the regular version. This is a riot to play with a group of people!

When it comes to exercise for this game, you can essentially get a full body workout. You use your legs to jump around and move, but you’re also using your arms with the controller. Some of the songs have a lot of choreography for your arms, and they start burning in no time! Some of the songs are a bit more technical, and you can even workout your stomach muscles! Also great for cardio/aerobic work.

Just Dance 3

Materials: controller

Basics: hold the controller and dance like the people on the screen

Difficulty Level : medium-hard


The moves for this game feel a little more challenging than the ones for the previous edition. It still requires more dancing skills than DDR. Again, no difficulty levels, so expect some trouble in the beginning if you’re not used to how this game works.

Like I said before, you only need the controller to play this. I feel as if they’ve improved the technology a little bit, because it seems to pick up on your moves better than the older version.

This has the same scoring system than the other game and it picks up on your movements better, which is definitely to your advantage. There are more options and more ways to score, which makes it more enjoyable. There are more dud songs on this one than the last one, but some of the song choices are right from the top 40 and are really fun to dance to.

When it comes to exercise, this is the same as above. You can work your arms, legs, and stomach muscles when you really get into it. You make this quite intense and get your blood pumping!

I highly recommend these games for exercising purposes if you’re not good at going to a gym or holding yourself responsible for working out. They make exercising fun and addicting. I’m a firm believer that anyone can play these games, albeit they may take a little bit of practice. The games run for about $30-$50 each, but when you compare that to a gym membership, you can see it is well worth it.

If you have any questions, please leave a comment below and I’ll make sure I answer them!

(And if you really, really don’t think you’re cut out for these games, please see the video below for some inspiration.)


Tell me what you think!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s