Liberty Parks and Playgrounds, Inc. offers cutting-edge technologies that work with your playground to promote healthy outdoor exercise and social play. Biba is the next generation of fun – augmented reality, imagination-driven playground games for parents to play with their children aged three to nine. Contact us today if you are considering tomorrow’s tech for your playground project!
VANCOUVER, BC — (Marketwired – Jun 6, 2017) – Biba Ventures, a company leading the smart playground movement to decrease screen time and get kids outside, today announces the publication of a scientific study in the Journal of Child Health Care offering new evidence that mobile games can increase physical activity levels among children on the playground. Intended to be played by parents and children together on mobile devices, Biba is a collection of games for iOS and Android that seeks to reorient the screen-fixation of today’s youth towards active, outdoor physical play.
This study tested the effectiveness of Biba games in promoting moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA), compared to MVPA during typical playground play (“free play”) among 20 children between the ages of 4 years and 11 years old. A Biba play session involves a parent holding their phone with a game open, while the child spends most of their session time playing away from the phone on playground equipment based on the game directives. The child returns to the phone intermittently to perform a game function, complete a mini-game or advance their progress through the game’s imaginary scenario. Children wore heart rate monitors during a 20-minute free play session monitoring heart rate every five minutes, took a break, and then participated in a 20-minute Biba play session monitoring heart rate every five minutes.
Average heart rate was calculated for each child of both the free play and Biba play sessions. These averages were then used to calculate a percentage change from resting heart rate for both sessions for each child. The results of the study showed that MVPA (as estimated from mean heart rate levels) was nearly 42 percent higher during the Biba gameplay conditions than in the free play conditions.
“In today’s digital age, the general decline in physical activity among children and corresponding increase in screen time has left parents struggling to find creative ways to get their children back outside,” said Matt Toner, CEO of Biba Ventures. “Biba alleviates the stress for parents because our games embrace today’s screen-savvy kids and the expanding role of technology to make the playground exciting again. Through our fundamental principle of embodied play, kids use their bodies to enact or participate in Biba games rather than sitting on a bench and passively moving their progress forward through an avatar — kids are the avatar.”
While Biba games can be played on any playground, they work best on playgrounds with Biba’s augmented reality markers installed: markers attached to playground equipment that can unlock new content, activate mini-games and more when scanned by the parent’s phone. There are currently more than 200 smart Biba playgrounds in North America.
For more information on Biba Ventures, visit www.bibaventures.com.
About Biba Ventures
Founded in 2011, Biba Ventures Inc. is turning every playground across North America and beyond into smart playgrounds that re-engage parents and children through its augmented reality games and mobile apps. Cities and jurisdictions from all over benefit from Biba as it uses the smartphones found in every parents’ pocket or purse to unlock new and exciting games every time a family visits the playground. Biba games also have a second mission — to address the problem of youth sedentariness and screen-fixation and turn healthy gameplay into actionable data that municipalities and park boards can use to learn more about their community’s play spaces.
— Sara Sublousky, Market Wired