The term “exergaming” refers to technology-driven activities, such as video game play, that require participants to be physically active in order to play the game. It can distract you from the discomforts of exercise and motivate you to repeat the workout day after day.
For example, there are programs for strength-building and aerobics that get you into a jump-rope challenge, a spacey dance routine, sword-fighting, fitness boxing, and cycling.
They’re entertaining and highly motivating — and potentially nauseating.
Virtual reality (VR) sickness is a real phenomenon that can make you feel lousy after even a brief encounter with the fantasy world within your head-mounted VR device. It's a form of motion sickness that can trigger a headaches, nausea, vomiting, and disorientation.
A study published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research reveals that exergames like the wildly popular "Beat Saber" leave many people feeling slightly queasy and unsteady even 40 minutes after removing their VR device. And 14% of the study's participants who exergamed for 50 minutes still felt extremely ill at that point.
(FYI: "Beat Saber" puts you in a fantastic neon environment where you slice up blocks in sync with musical rhythms using two sabers of contrasting colors.)
There's not much you can do to dodge VR sickness until game designers create environments that aren't so disorienting. So allow yourself time to recover before going on about your day.
Or here's an idea: Tune in to an exercise class on your computer or TV, or head outdoors for a 10,000-step walk. You’ll suffer no side effects except improved muscle tone and energy.