Friday, August 12, 2011

Gamification -- An Exerblast

My friend Bill is having a blast with his invention...Exerblast. You must check it out -- wellness gamified.

Along those lines, great postings on I'd paraphrase:

The topic of wellness is the perfect space to examine gamification more thoroughly. There are 3 main reasons gamification can be so impact-full in the wellness arena.

It's true, not everyone is playing a game to win. In fact, four different types of players have been identified (achiever, socializer, explorer, killer) each with different desires as it pertains to why they are playing the game in the first place. But within each player category, individuals are still competing, some more actively and openly than others, but all competing on some level. Competition is innate to games which leverage such tactics as scoreboards, levels, achievements and earned status. As it relates to wellness, weight-loss and social motivation to lead a more active life-style, competition is an extraordinarily powerful motivator. is a company focused on setting up healthy competitions within organizations. They leverage gamified tactics and at their core, the game itself is one big competition. Enjoy their video below.

Saying gamified applications won't take hold, based on today's technological landscape would be akin to saying social networking would never take-off back in 2003. Just like social media and social networking needed the advent of the Web2.0 movement to really blossom, gamification is patiently awaiting (or perhaps helping to bring about more swiftly) the coming 3.0 era where inter-connected devices "talk" with one another for specific purposes in order to benefit the human receiving the data.

Perhaps the most logical and simple argument as to why gamification can be a game-changer specifically in the wellness category is due to the fact that the human being playing the game will actually feel the results. Playing a game to earn a free cup of coffee or receive an upgrade to first class on your next flight might be all the motivation someone needs to partake and do so consistently. But feeling better in a pair of jeans, lowering your blood pressure or simply eroding that stubborn 10 lbs. is another level of gratification and leads me to believe that gamificaiton in the wellness sphere has a long, long way to run.

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