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MF reviews console fitness games

We put four of the latest console games aimed at boosting your fitness through their paces.

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EA Sports Active 2.0

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For PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Nintendo Wii, £49.99

EA Sports Active 2.0 comes with a forearm heart rate monitor, which it uses to determine how hard you're working and when you need to increase the intensity of your workout, and supports resistance bands and weights. What's more, it offers specific workouts that target every part of your body so if you do enough of them, you get a pretty thorough home training programme. The game also tracks your performance and goals from the start, giving you a detailed picture of the progress you're making over time.

Go to ea.com (opens in new tab) for more information.

Wii Fit Plus

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For Nintendo Wii, £89.99 (with Balance Board), £19.99 (game only)

This offers a very different experience to the other games here thanks to the Wii Balance Board – a scale that can measure weight, pressure, centre of balance and movement. The aim of the title is to help you cut weight and increase strength by challenging you to get through numerous mini-games by repeatedly performing exercises. It’s ambitious and a nice entry point for someone wanting to start a fitness routine, but if you're a hardcore exerciser, this isn't going to tax you much more than your warm-up.

Go to wiifit.com (opens in new tab) for more information.

YourShape: Fitness Evolved

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For Xbox 360 Kinect, £39.99

YourShape uses Xbox's Kinect system to track your body in real-time, meaning you can't cheat on the form front. The game is diverse too – it includes programmes for individuals who want to increase size, lose weight and even women who have recently given birth. Like some of its competitors, it uses games to keep you motivated to train so you'll find yourself smashing bricks by throwing your arms around and jumping onto different coloured sections on the floor. But while that's fun and does give you some kind of a workout, if you're looking to develop elite level fitness, try Crossfit classes instead.

For more information, go to yourshapecenter.com (opens in new tab).

The Biggest Loser: Ultimate Workout

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For Xbox 360 Kinect, £39.99

Ultimate Fitness is based on the TV series The Biggest Loser and focuses on yoga and resistance exercises. The best thing about it is the level of personalisation it offers – in-game training programmes use a series of tests to determine what areas you’re struggling with then adjust your workouts to target your weak points. Hardened gym nuts might find it a bit limited but anyone looking to shake off the effects of a sedentary lifestyle will really benefit from using it.

For more information, go to biggestloserthegame.com (opens in new tab).