We've been combining video games and physical activity for years now. We've had the Wii and its Balance Board, Microsoft's Kinect, and the PlayStation Move. There are mobile apps to make your morning jog into playtime, and systems like Fitocracy to make your workout a friendly competition.

But none of these is as fun as a trampoline.

Researchers in Japan have hooked up sensors to trampolines in such a way that the sensors can feed motion data into a game. The end result is fairly similar to the Wii Balance Board, only bigger, bouncier and cooler.

Sure, the purpose of the trampoline-as-controller research is to provide a low-impact, entertaining way to draw players who might otherwise be sedentary into physical exercise. But I can imagine more than one way that a trampoline controller could make a game itself more fun. We all tend to crouch, tense, and spring anyway, when sitting on the sofa dodging through obstacles with controllers in our hands. Why not let a trampoline leap propel you through a platforming game?

Using a trampoline as video game controller [IT World, via The Baltimore Sun]