Dance Dance Revolution (DDR) has been found to be a powerful tool in the fight against obesity that researchers believe can have a profound long-term impact on the health and lifestyle habits of a new generation. In January of 2006, the state of West Virginia (WV) and Konami Digital Entertainment, Inc., announced the placement of DDR systems into all WV public schools. To date 364 (50%) physical education (PE) teachers have received DDR training and equipment. The training schedule began with the 180 middle schools of which 166 (88%) have been trained, followed by 93 (83%) of the 112 high schools, and 105 (24%) of the 438 elementary schools.
PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to determine the trained PE teachers' perceptions regarding the utility of DDR in a school setting.
METHODS: Surveys were sent out to all 364 trained teachers and 167 (46%) completed and returned the surveys.
RESULTS: 100% of the teachers surveyed felt that their students enjoyed DDR. The majority of the teachers first introduced DDR in PE as a whole class, but then most commonly use it as a station/circuit with other activities. 57% reported incorporating DDR into other school activities. The most common other activities included at lunch/recess, school dances, and as a reward activity. 29% reported concerns about implementing DDR into the school setting. The most frequent concerns were: maintenance of the equipment, theft, and lack of additional equipment. 32% reported having bought additional equipment from other sources. 28% were interested in developing a DDR club for social affiliation.
CONCLUSIONS: Implementing DDR into the school environment has been viewed positively by the majority of WV physical educators. These results support expansion of the project, with the goal of engaging public school students, including those not normally predisposed to exercise, in a fun physical activity that helps improve overall health at an impressionable age.