The Impact of Playing Video Games on Physical Activities with Relation to Obesity among Majmaah Intermediate Students
Author(s): Raed Eid Alzahrani*, Abdulmohsen Saleh Alharbi, Khalid Khalaf M Almaymuni, Mohammed Saud S Alotaibi and Waleed Khalid Alghuyaythat
Background/Introduction: Playing video games is considered as a major way of passing times among adolescents in different parts of the world. The time spent on playing video games could interfere with the physical wellbeing of adolescents. This could be a reduction in the level of physical activity and following unhealthy food habits which might lead to obesity. Obesity has been shown to be a factor in developing multiple cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, and other diseases risk factors, such as hypertension, hyperlipidemia, atherosclerosis, and hyperinsulinemia.
Objectives: To evaluate the time spent on playing video games and its effect on the level of physical activities in relation to obesity.
Methodology: This is a cross-sectional study which was done by recruiting 381 male intermediate students at Majmaah city. A basic measurement of body weight and height with closed-ended interview-based questionnaire was used to collect data from participants.
Results: The study showed that 56% of participants played >7 hours of video games per week. In addition, 31.5% and 12.3% of participants played an average of 4-7 and 1-3 hours per week respectively. 46.7% of those participants prefer to play video games than do physical activities. The study also showed 156 (40.9%) participants were in normal weight, 102 (26.8%) were underweight 75 (19.7%) were overweight and 48 (12.6%) obese. Among the overweight and obese group, there was a significant association between the hours spending on playing video games and the level of physical activities with P<0.05.
Conclusion: Playing video games as a source of leisure among intermediate students is more preferential than doing physical activities which would result in spending more time playing video games than doing physical activities. Overall, playing videogames would increase a sedentary lifestyle which could result in less body energy expenditure and weight gain over a period of time. This would increase the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases. Increase the level of awareness with planning a public measure to promote physical activities and reduce hours playing video games can modify such risk factors.