The Nintendo Switch has slowly become a portable workout machine

The portability of the Nintendo Switch has made it the best-selling console over the past couple years, and the ability to truly take console gaming on the go has become a dream come true for many gamers (especially after how Sony falsely marketed the Vita). One unexpected side effect of the system and its detachable Joy-Con controllers is that it has become the home of several exercise titles. While it will never replace going to the gym and healthy dieting, Nintendo Switch fitness games can be used to provide a nice workout from home or anywhere else you are traveling to if you bring along a few different games.

The most high-profile exercise title on Nintendo Switch is also the hardest one to travel with. Ring Fit Adventure released with the “Ring-Con,” which is really just a Pilates ring that you hook a Joy-Con up to. While it’s not the easiest thing to store away, it easily fits in a suitcase or in a car just like a regular Pilates ring would, so it’s still apt for mobile or home workouts as long as you make sure to prepare ahead of time.

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Ring Fit Adventure also serves as a great entry into fitness gaming as it masquerades working out into a role-playing game. Players are doing yoga poses, overhead shoulder presses, and jogging in place in order to perform in-game actions. It never feels like a boring workout routine like you’d be instructed to do by a DVD or fitness trainer, and players want to naturally get better at the actions in order to complete the game’s 100-plus levels more efficiently. It successfully gamifies working out in a transparent yet novel way.

The great Nintendo Switch fitness games that will help you get in shape

Fitness Boxing, which was also published by Nintendo, is another excellent Switch title that can help gamers lose some pounds while having some fun. Essentially a rhythm game, the title has players throwing different punch types (which are determined by the Joy-Con’s motion sensors) to instrumental versions of pop songs. Workouts can be personalized to fit the player’s needs (so it’s possible to do a quick 10-minute session or half-hour training one) as well. Thanks to having players squat as well, this winds up being more than just an upper-body exercise like one might expect.

Just Dance may have a reputation for being a family-friendly party game, but it is also a solid workout title at its core. Dancing is a great way to get in shape, and while its routines aren’t designed with exercise specifically in mind, just making players move is still a way to burn calories. The title hits the Switch with each yearly installment, so there are plenty of different songs to dance to. It’s also a great way to get kids to join in on the fun and get them to be active rather than just being stationary while playing games.

Those that enjoy what Just Dance has to offer but want to take it to the next level from a fitness perspective will want to check out Zumba Burn It Up! The recently released Switch title launched at a budget price and features plenty of catchy Latin tunes to dance to including Cardi B, Bad Bunny and J Balvin’s huge hit, “I Like It.” The choreography is all geared toward exercising and movements that get you moving quickly. There are a number of different workouts to choose from and they can range from short sessions that are just a few songs to hour-long workouts that will test the endurance of anyone. There are in-game trackers to encourage players to hit fitness goals, and it’s a great supplemental workout just like the popular DVD series of the same name.

A reminder that Nintendo Switch fitness games should be part of a healthy lifestyle, not the entirety of it

Ring Fit Adventure set up guide

The Nintendo Switch also has several other more traditional games that keep players active as well. Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 is one of them as long as players use motion controls for the different Olympic events rather than buttons, as there are plenty of good arm workouts. As the name suggests, Arms is also a great arm-based title as the fighting game is entirely played with motion controls. Likewise, Mario Tennis Aces features a motion-based mode that mimics the controls of tennis in Wii Sports. The latter is a great low-impact exercise, perfect for senior citizens and kids alike. None of these will make the pounds melt off, but any title that has the player being active is a step in the right direction.

While the Switch is basically a portable piece of workout equipment due to all of these games being playable in tabletop mode (so you don’t even need a television to play them), it’s important that this isn’t your only means to get in shape. The Switch and these titles should be just one tool for players. Doing other aerobic exercises, lifting weights (either physical ones or using your own body), watching what you eat, and making sure that you are getting all of the nutrients you need to be healthy are also very important. No one thing will help you be healthy to an optimal degree, although small changes can make you much healthier overall.

The versatility of the Nintendo Switch is why it has become such a popular gaming console. It is fantastic to see so many Nintendo Switch fitness games releasing on the system, although there are some notable absences like Nintendo’s own Wii Fit series. Together, these games show that fitness can be enjoyed portably without needing a television. With a number of Nintendo Switch fitness games that encourage players to be active, players can create their own exercise routine that works for them and can turn an inactive hobby into one that helps them lead a better life. Nintendo has always encouraged players to life a healthier lifestyle by taking breaks so it seems fitting for the Switch to be the most workout-friendly console on the market.