Views and Visions: Exercising in the new normal Part 2

Category: Lifestyle/Entertainment


Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. duck / dʌk / (n.) – the act of quickly lowering one’s head or upper body to avoid being hit or seen

    The ball would’ve hit my face if I hadn’t been able to make a quick duck.

  2. keep track of (someone/something) / kip træk ʌv / (idiom) – to remain informed and aware of what’s happening to someone or something

    It’s easy to keep track of what’s happening in the world thanks to the 24/7 news channels.

  3. burn / bɜrn / (v.) – to use something as a source of energy

    Exercising helps burn off excess calories and fat.

  4. on the spot / ɒn ðə spɒt / (idiom) – without moving to another place or location

    The woman started jogging on the spot to keep herself warm.

  5. break a sweat / breɪk ə swɛt / (idiom) – to start sweating

    He started to break a sweat after running for only 10 seconds.


Read the text below.

Continued from Part 1…

In the game, the player holds a controller in each hand and is guided by a virtual trainer through a workout that features a variety of punches, steps and ducks. It keeps track of your statistics, including how many punches you have thrown and how many calories you have burned. A desire to improve those numbers gave me extra motivation to continue and it turned out to be the perfect workout for me to do before work. And of course, it was nice to be able to exercise and get fit safely, even during a pandemic.

I obviously wasn’t the only one with this idea. Another exercise game, Ring Fit Adventure, has been sold out for months. I was finally able to buy a copy in September and started playing it in the evenings. It has a storyline and you interact with characters, so it feels similar to a regular role-playing game. The only difference is that to move your character, you have to run on the spot. And to attack an enemy, you have to do sit-ups or squats. I usually break a sweat after only five or 10 minutes.

I hope that life can soon get back to normal and I can get my exercise in other ways. But for now, video games are my unlikely solution for staying fit. (Joel Tansey)

This article was provided by The Japan Times Alpha.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

  • In your opinion, is it really possible to get as good a workout at home as you can at the gym or outside? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • Do you think it’s important to break a sweat in order to stay healthy? Why or why not? Discuss.

Discussion B

  • The author says that Ring Fit Adventure was sold out for months. What other products did many people have trouble finding last year? Which ones did you personally have trouble finding? Discuss.
  • In your opinion, why was it so hard to find these products (ex. the manufacturers didn’t make enough, people bought way more than they needed)? Discuss.