Konami announced that it has teamed up with UnitedHealthcare for a joint initiative that will use its popular dance rhythm game DanceDanceRevolution in schools to fight childhood obesity. The initiative will create a special version of DanceDanceRevolution called the DDR Classroom Edition.
The game and the special hardware it uses was developed by Performance Designed Products and allows up to 48 students to participate at the same time in a dance session by using mat controllers. These mats use a special smart card reader that tracks an individual student's progress. Teachers will use these cards to track students' health and progress. Data collected will include the number of steps taken during a particular song, body mass index, and caloric burn rate. A song list for the DDR Classroom Edition has not been revealed.
DDR Classroom Edition is already being used in schools in three cities Longwood, Florida; Gainesville, Georgia; and Fresno, Texas. The game will also become part of the "Activate for Kids" school wellness program, which is run by UnitedHealthcare and the United Health Foundation throughout Florida, Georgia, and Texas.