A new Michigan State University study finds ‘virtual’ athletic training partners might be more effective than trying to work out alone. Researchers found a virtual training partner, someone appearing on a video monitor, actually provides greater motivation for people to exercise longer , harder and more frequently.
"You don’t have to worry about finding a perfect match…getting to an exercise location at the same time…trying to match up schedules.”
Feltz says they’re interested in seeing if animated characters also have the same motivating effect in specially designed video games.
“If we find that these affects still work, then they can be put into these games…and I think really enhance their purpose.”
The MSU study will appear in the Journal of Sports and Exercise Psychology.