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The 10 Best Fitness Apps for a VR Workout

When you've indulged a little too much reach for the VR headset.

So normally VRFocus would publish this kind of article at the start of the year, just as everyone has made their new years resolution to be a bit healthier, eat better and exercise a bit more. Usually, all that has come crashing down by the end of January, it’s still cold and miserable outside and the thought of going for a run or even attempting the gym seems like a herculean task. So why not take a different approach, stay inside, grab the virtual reality (VR) headset and maybe, just maybe, enjoy working up a sweat. 

Thrill of the FightTo help in this task without spending too much cash, VRFocus has selected the best VR titles which will move that body of yours. Some are sports videogames – no not leisurely fishing ones – while others involve shooting stuff, dancing and even causing a bit of carnage in a bid to help justify that Friday night pizza.

Pistol Whip

Here’s a videogame that certainly doesn’t fit into the category of fitness but to truly succeed standing on the spot just isn’t an option. Pistol Whip is a rhythm-action experience using guns, where you have to survive levels killing all the opponents on route, all to some thumping tunes.

These enemies shoot back so you’ll need to be light on your feet to dodge bullets as well as return fire. On the harder levels, Pistol Whip is a good full-body cardio workout because if you don’t put the effort in you’ll fail.

  • Supported platforms: Oculus Quest, Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Valve Index and Windows Mixed Reality

Pistol WhipBoxVR

Here’s the first proper training VR app on this list, taking the sport of boxing and combining it with rhythm action gameplay. You can choose from 45 workouts depending on how vigorous a session you want. These vary in length from short three-minute warmups to 60+ minute endurance workouts, there’s enough choice depending on how many calories you want to burn. Great for the upper body, you can even use your own tunes.

  • Supported platforms: Oculus Quest, Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Valve Index, Windows Mixed Reality and PlayStation VR

BoxVRBeat Saber

This title is almost a de facto purchase for anyone new to VR or looking for a fun, energetic experience. There’s no denying the fact that swinging a couple of swords around to music is terribly addictive, easily making time fly for some entertaining exercise. Like a lot of these titles, it’s only on the higher difficulty levels that you’ll really burn some calories. Anything less than Expert just won’t cut it.

  • Supported platforms: Oculus Quest, Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Valve Index, Windows Mixed Reality and PlayStation VR

Beat Saber

Racket: Nx

A futuristic take on squash Racket: Nx puts you inside a giant dome with hexagonal wall panels which light up according to the mode and difficulty. Some panels score points, some remove health and others replace health, offering a nice gameplay mixture which isn’t solely about smashing a ball. There are single-player and multiplayer modes helping up that competitive edge, just make sure you have plenty of space to play in.

  • Supported platforms: Oculus Quest, Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Valve Index and Windows Mixed Reality

Racket: NX screenshot1Thrill of the Fight

While BoxVR merely used a boxing theme to workout to, Thrill of the Fight puts you slap bang in the middle of the ring. This is one of those titles which doesn’t offer lots of flashy extras, just you and an opponent to punch it out. There are training areas with a speedball, punching bag and more to fine-tune your skills. The fights themselves are some of the best you’ll get in VR, no arms flailing here, you need to be accurate and punch with intention.

  • Supported platforms: Oculus Quest, Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Valve Index and Windows Mixed Reality

YUR - Thrill of the FightSprint Vector

Before getting fit in VR was really a thing if you wanted to burn some calories and get your sweat on then Survios’ Sprint Vector was one of the best ways to do it. Designed around the idea of looking for a novel way for people to move in VR without feeling nauseous, Sprint Vector utilised arm swinging as a means of propulsion alongside gliding and climbing mechanics.

With a game show vibe and a competitive edge, Sprint Vector is ideally suited to those who want more than just a training regime.

  • Supported platforms: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and PlayStation VR

Gorn

The most brutal title on this list, there’s no music here – unless for some reason blood splatter counts – as Gorn is a gladiatorial combat experience. Gameplay is all about survival, using an assortment of melee weapons to decapitate, dismember, smash, stab, rip or slice opponents to bits. As such there’s plenty of effort involved, especially once the arena starts to fill up with opponents. After a few matches, you’ll soon feel the burn.

  • Supported platforms: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Valve Index, Windows Mixed Reality and PlayStation VR

Synth Riders

Time for another rhythm-action videogame, this time going for a retro 80s vibe. Featuring the most Synth Wave tracks of any VR title – other genres like DubStep are included – Synth Riders is best described as neon-drenched cheerleader gaming. The standard mode has you matching coloured orbs, while featuring more of a boxing theme, having to punch the orbs as well.

Synth Riders gets you moving to some very catchy beats – 30 to choose from – so you’ll want to rest those arms after a good session.

  • Supported platforms: Oculus Quest, Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Valve Index and Windows Mixed Reality

Synth RidersCreed: Rise to Glory

Float like and butterfly and sting like a bee in one of the more realistic experiences in this fitness selection. Creed: Rise to Glory by Survios puts you in the film, able to train with the likes of Rocky Balboa, before heading into the ring to see if you’ve got the skills to last. A high energy videogame which certainly requires effort, here you have both single-player campaign and free play modes plus online PvP matchmaking for plenty of gameplay options.

  • Supported platforms: Oculus Quest, Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, PlayStation VR

Creed: Rise to GloryDance Central

There’s no denying that you can get your dancing shoes on to any of the rhythm-action titles on this list. But to really strut that funky stuff like you mean it then you’ll want to try Dance CentralBrought back to life just for Oculus’ headsets, a 32 song soundtrack covers the 1970s the way through to today’s chart-toppers. Routines have been choreographed for each song providing a nice full-body aerobic workout.

  • Supported platforms: Oculus Quest, Oculus Rift

Dance Central image1

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