Existing virtual reality applications may be mostly sedentary experiences, but that doesn’t that they can’t also be healthy. VirZOOM, a start-up company out of Cambridge Massachusetts, is planning to lead the way in “vSports” with the launch of its virtual reality assisted exercise bikes.
In a nutshell, VirZOOM’s idea is to strap up a bunch of VR headsets, with attached gaming PCs, to excercise bikes in order to allow users to take part in competitive multiplayer cycling races. Sounds like fun, if not a bit more effort than actually dusting off the old bicycle. In addition to cycle races, VirZOOM’s software also offers a flying pegasus challenge, formula one racing, and tank battle games, which all require exercise to move your avatar around.
To help propel the idea into the public eye, VirZOOM will be setting up a number of vSports centers at arcades across the US. The list includes eBash gaming center (IN), Game Haven (CT), Game Republik (TX), Game Tyrant (UT), LAN Mob Gaming Center (NY), Newton Gaming Center (MA), Novastar Gaming Center (KS), Section 9 Cyber Café (ND), Sphere Arcade (OH), UCI eSports Arena (CA), Virtual World Arcade (CA), VR Junkies (Orem/West Valley UT, NM, NY, MN), and Wyandotte Athletic Club (OH). At these locations, VirZOOM will be making use of Vive headsets, but the bike works with the Rift and PlayStation VR too.
It’s certainly a novel approach to combining virtual reality, gaming, and exercise into one. If you don’t fancy popping out to one of the arcades, can actually already order one of the bikes and games from Amazon for $399.99. Do you see yourself taking this up particular hobby anytime in the future?