Advent Calendar 2009

3 – Serious Health Games for Stroke Rehabilitation

Today, on the third of December, we tackle a serious (and very good) presentation from James Burke, a Ph.D. student from the University of Ulster, who researches games for serious purposes (so-called Serious Games) such as stroke rehabilitation. Games can be ideal motivators for patients to engage in upper limb post-stroke rehabilitation exercises. For this purpose, Burke and his team developed a number of Webcam games to foster patient exercise (and Wii games are also discussed such as the Wii Vibraphone game for wrist rehabilitation).

Similar to what is done with the Wii Fit and EA Sports Active exercise games, the patient (or gamer) profile is stored to track progress of the exercises. The presentation also talks about the technology and game design ideas behind making these health games. The main takeaway here for me is that the intuitive input control of camera and sensors has great potential for rehabilitation or serious games. Continue reading