The TRIL Centre (Technology Research for Independent Living) is currently conducting a programme call Stepping Stones using Shimmer (a wearable wireless sensors system) and BioMOBIUS (an open shareable software platform).
Stepping Stones is a short term high intensity programme of physical exercise to improve fitness levels in healthy middle-aged people (55-65 years). A complete home / work technology platform has been developed for the project. This facilitates effective monitoring and biofeedback during exercise whilst enhancing end-user motivation and involvement in the process.
Shimmer was chosen over existing commercial products such as the Wii Fit due to its ability to provide greater contextual information. With real-time digital signal processing Shimmer provides comprehensive instantaneous feedback on movement, and biophysical parameters as opposed to intermittent data provided by the Wii Fit (data only provided when the participant is on the step).
Shimmer takes Kinematic data (Accel + Gyro) via two ankle worn units, and Biophysical data via a Shimmer ECG connected to a Polar chest strap. This benefits participants by providing:
The data captured during each exercise session is then sent back to remote servers to be viewed by clinicians. This allows clinicians to monitor the participant’s adherence and progress through the programme, if the person is performing the exercises correctly, and if the participant is reaching the right intensity / target zones during exercise. The historical data is also being analysed to identify if the programme needs to be altered to match an individual’s capabilities, and to establish changes to biomarkers and a participant’s health and well being over time.
Read about the Stepping Stones programme on the TRIL website.
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