REHAB 2014

Research Article

Designing Simplified Exergame for Muscle and Balance Training in Seniors: A Concept of ´Out in Nature´

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  • @INPROCEEDINGS{10.4108/icst.pervasivehealth.2014.255269,
        author={Ather Nawaz and Mathilde Waerstad and Kine Omholt and Jorunn L. Helbostad and Beatrix Vereijken and Nina Skjaeret and Lill Kristiansen},
        title={Designing Simplified Exergame for Muscle and Balance Training in Seniors: A Concept of ´Out in Nature´},
        proceedings={REHAB 2014},
        publisher={ICST},
        proceedings_a={REHAB},
        year={2014},
        month={7},
        keywords={exergames design seniors balance falls},
        doi={10.4108/icst.pervasivehealth.2014.255269}
    }
    
  • Ather Nawaz
    Mathilde Waerstad
    Kine Omholt
    Jorunn L. Helbostad
    Beatrix Vereijken
    Nina Skjaeret
    Lill Kristiansen
    Year: 2014
    Designing Simplified Exergame for Muscle and Balance Training in Seniors: A Concept of ´Out in Nature´
    REHAB
    ICST
    DOI: 10.4108/icst.pervasivehealth.2014.255269
Ather Nawaz1,*, Mathilde Waerstad2, Kine Omholt2, Jorunn L. Helbostad1, Beatrix Vereijken1, Nina Skjaeret1, Lill Kristiansen3
  • 1: Department of Neuroscience, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Norway
  • 2: Department of Telematics Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Norway
  • 3: Department of Telematics, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Norway
*Contact email: ather.nawaz@ntnu.no

Abstract

If exergames are to be used successfully to improve physical function in senior citizens, they need to be designed specifically for this target group. Muscle strength and balance training are the key components of exercise to prevent falling in seniors. The aim of this study was to design a new, simplified exergame concept for senior citizens, which focuses on physical activity in general, and balance and muscle strength in particular. The study provides a new design concept of an exergame on the basis of assessment of 7 senior participants (70.6 + - 7.9 years) experience with three commercially available exergames. The participants stated that the design of the existing exergames should be simplified and closely related to activities that can be associated with their daily life. The feedback was qualitatively analyzed to enlist the requirements of a new exergame. A new simplified exergame design concept, Out in Nature, was created on the basis of the seniors’ feedback. The new design focused on a simplistic design, playing games for balance and muscle training related to real life activities. The study demonstrates a concept for a game developed for seniors that can be used to train aspects of balance and gait as part of natural tasks.