Page last updated at 23:03 GMT, Monday, 17 August 2009 00:03 UK

Video gamers 'older than thought'

Obese  child with handheld
Gamers may be getting older, but they are not getting slimmer

The average age of an adult video game player is 35 - higher than previously thought, a US study suggests.

A team from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also found gamers were less healthy, fatter, and more depressed than non-gamers.

Researchers from the government agency analysed data from 500 adults aged 19 to 90 in the Seattle-Tacoma area of Washington state.

More than 45% of those surveyed reported playing video games.

The team chose the Seattle-Tacoma area because its internet usage level is the highest within the US and it is one of the larger markets for media.

A UK survey from 2002, conducted by the Leisure Software Publishers Association, found the average gamer was aged between 25 and 34.

But it also suggested that the average age of the keenest players is gradually edging upwards, a finding reinforced by the CDC finding.

The team from CDC examined people's perception of their mood, personality, health status, physical and mental health, body mass index (BMI) and quality of life.

Female video-game players reported greater depression and lower health status than female non-players, while male gamers reported a higher BMI and a greater reliance on the internet than non-gamers.

CDC's Dr James B Weaver said the results were not that surprising.

"Health risk factors, specifically a higher BMI and a larger number of poor mental-health days, differentiated adult video game players from non-gamers," he said.

"Video game players also reported lower extraversion, consistent with research on adolescents that linked video-game playing to a sedentary lifestyle and overweight status."



Print Sponsor


SEE ALSO
Alarm sounded over game futures
14 Aug 09 |  Technology
Video game sales fall in the US
14 Aug 09 |  Business
Video games 'can improve vision'
29 Mar 09 |  Health
Disability no barrier to gaming
12 Mar 09 |  Technology
Computer games lure older players
09 Apr 02 |  Science/Nature

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific