UTMB researcher studies Zombie exercise app

UTMB assistant professor Elizabeth Lyons recently received a $140,000 grant from the American Heart Association to study the efficacy of the game in encouraging people to increase their activity levels. “Zombies, Run!” is designed to be used by walkers or joggers, and each of its audio “missions” is accomplished by actually walking or running, as monitored by a smartphone’s GPS or accelerometer.
“It’s this very compelling narrative that plays out in fake radio transmissions that come to you on your phone headset — if you’re running outside in the dark, it really is like you are out scrounging for supplies after a zombie apocalypse, and this guy is radioing to you where you should go and telling you about things that are going on,” Lyons said. “The nice thing about the game is that it uses the power of narrative to create a vehicle for behavior change.”

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