Article Text


Testing the feasibility and acceptability of using the Nintendo Wii in the home to increase activity levels, vitality and well-being in people with multiple sclerosis (Mii-vitaliSe): protocol for a pilot randomised controlled study
  1. Sarah Thomas1,
  2. Louise Fazakarley2,
  3. Peter W Thomas1,
  4. Sarah Brenton3,
  5. Sarah Collyer3,
  6. Steve Perring4,
  7. Rebecca Scott5,
  8. Kathleen Galvin6,
  9. Charles Hillier3
  1. 1Clinical Research Unit, School of Health and Social Care, Bournemouth University, Bournemouth, Dorset, UK
  2. 2School of Health and Social Care, Bournemouth University, Bournemouth, Dorset, UK
  3. 3Dorset Multiple Sclerosis Service, Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Poole, Dorset, UK
  4. 4Medical Physics Department, Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Poole, Dorset, UK
  5. 5Physiotherapy Department, National Star College, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, UK
  6. 6Faculty of Health and Social Care, Hull University, Hull, Yorkshire, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Sarah Thomas; saraht{at}


Introduction The benefits of physical activity for people with multiple sclerosis (pwMS) have been recognised. However, exercise regimens can be difficult to maintain over the longer term and pwMS may face unique barriers to physical activity engagement. Pilot research suggests the Nintendo Wii can be used safely at home by pwMS with minimal mobility/balance issues and may confer benefits. We have developed a home-based physiotherapist supported Wii intervention (‘Mii-vitaliSe’) for pwMS that uses commercial software. This is a pilot study to explore the feasibility of conducting a full scale clinical and cost-effectiveness trial of Mii-vitaliSe.

Methods and analysis 30 ambulatory, relatively inactive pwMS will be randomised to receive Mii-vitaliSe immediately, or after 6 months. Outcomes, measured at baseline and 6 and 12 months later, will include balance, gait, mobility, hand dexterity and self-reported physical activity levels, fatigue, self-efficacy, mood and quality of life. Interviews conducted on a purposive sample of participants will explore experiences of participation in the study and barriers and facilitators to using the Wii. Mean recruitment, adherence rate and standard deviations (SDs) of potential primary outcomes for the full trial will be estimated and precision summarised using 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Interview transcripts will be thematically analysed using a generic qualitative approach.

Ethics and dissemination National Health Service (NHS; ref 12/SC/0420) and university ethical approvals have been obtained as has NHS Research and Development permission from the relevant trust. A home risk assessment will be undertaken for all potential participants. All adverse events will be closely monitored, documented and reported to the study Safety Monitoring Committee. At least one publication in a peer reviewed journal will be produced and research findings presented at a national and international conference. With service users, we will coproduce a summary of the findings for dissemination on our research unit's website and elsewhere.

Trial registration number ISRCTN 49286846.

  • Rehabilitation Medicine

This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See:

Statistics from

Request permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.