Gamificación y aprendizaje basado en juegos para la educación en hábitos de vida saludable en la infancia

  1. Gómez del Río, Nazaret
Supervised by:
  1. Carina Soledad González González Director
  2. Francisco José García Peñalvo Director

Defence university: Universidad de Salamanca

Fecha de defensa: 14 July 2021

  1. Patricia Paderewski Rodríguez Chair
  2. Alicia García Holgado Secretary
  3. Elvira Guadalupe Rincón Flores Committee member

Type: Thesis

Teseo: 741313 DIALNET lock_openTESEO editor


Obesity has been increasing progressively in recent decades, and in the pediatric population it has become one of the most serious public health problems. Studies on obesity highlight the situation in Spain, with a high prevalence, and the Canary Islands and the south of the peninsula at the top of the list in this disease. Although, childhood obesity has a complex and multifactorial etiology, where genetic and environmental factors intervene, unhealthy eating habits and sedentary lifestyle are the main factors of its appearance. The personal motivation of the individual is especially important for adherence to lifestyle changes. Adherence to exercise and physical activity is often difficult to maintain in the long term. In children, the reasons for abandoning physical activity are mainly related to difficulty in adapting to schedules, refusal to follow the routine, dissatisfaction with the results, among other reasons. Therefore, it is necessary to work not only with people affected by obesity, but also to educate their families, since it is in the family environment where lifestyles are acquired and perpetuated. Likewise, healthy lifestyle habits should start in childhood, and for children, play is a natural way to learn and can be an excellent strategy to apply in educational intervention programs. Technology also provides very useful tools to support children in their play and education. There are different studies on educational programs that demonstrate the efficacy of caloric expenditure associated with the use of active video games, as well as the effectiveness of the use of technologies and gamification with children for the promotion of healthy habits in the short term. However, there are very few studies on whether educational interventions on healthy habits with gamification and video games work in the long term. Objectives: To evaluate the influence of a gamified educational intervention program in children with obesity that promotes the acquisition and maintenance of healthy lifestyle habits and also involves the families. Methodology: The study design was quasi-experimental, with a total of 46 participants separated into two groups (experimental and control) belonging to the northern area of the island of Tenerife, Canary Islands. A long-term longitudinal study (3 years) was carried out. The experimental group participated for 9 months in an educational intervention on healthy habits and performed physical exercise through motor games and ICT tools. Both groups and their families benefited from a training session on healthy lifestyle habits. Results: The results show significant improvements between the experimental and control groups in terms of their knowledge of healthy eating and adherence to the Mediterranean diet, improved behavior and a greater sense of responsibility, as well as greater control over issues such as social stress and depression. Conclusion: The findings of this project suggest that a gamified and ICT-supported educational intervention program helps to motivate and promote improvements in children's lifestyles.