Game Based Rehabilitation
The concept of game based rehabilitation and serious games has gained much interest in recent years. Rehabilitation is used to perform biomechanical exercises to recover neuromotor abilities. Lloyd Mudiwa’s research shows that patients with neurological and vestibular diseases could benefit from incorporating popular video-game consoles into balance rehabilitation program. Video-game based rehabilitation has shown to replace traditional rehabilitation exercises in brain injury such as traumatic brain injury and stroke. Borghese et al. has presented with a novel game engine specifically designed to guide rehabilitation at home. Video games are considered more entertaining, motivating and engaging their users. Mainetti et al. went a step ahead and shown that video games can be integrated into the infrastructure that allows patients discharged from the hospital to continue rehabilitation at home under remote monitoring by the hospital. There is also evidence that rehabilitation for upper limb stroke has been accomplished by video game principle. Ricardo Dorigueto has evaluated the balance rehabilitation with virtual reality games in elderly and vestibular disorders and the results suggest that virtual reality games are effective in improving the dynamic balance in older people with balance disorder.
Serious games are games that are designed for other than pure entertainment. Serious game applications designed and implemented for military, clinical settings, educational purpose and in government have produced positive outcomes. The study by Bolliger et al. has shown that learning perception with the use of interactive tutorials has shown significant benefits. Currently, the majority of the serious games are used for training purpose in different fields such as training on aircraft repair, train employees on board. Part of which is because of the introduction of attractive game interfaces into the global market. In 2013 “Playing to Win: Gamification and Serious Games in Organizational Learning” survey conducted by Association for Talent Development (ATD) formerly known as American Society for Training and Development (ASTD), 25 percent of responding organizations indicated that they are using gamification for training and development. Gamification is the concept of applying game mechanics and game design techniques to engage and motivate people to achieve their goal. Given the growth in the serious games and the gamification market for rehabilitation purpose. Researchers, clinicians and physical therapists can take advantage of game consoles such as WBB as a rehabilitation tool for game based rehabilitation. Using these ideas and results, we have developed a video game specifically targeting for rehabilitation of standing balance. Our video game uses a PC and the WBB as an interface. We hypothesize that the video game will increase the player’s desire to perform their rehabilitation exercises. Therefore, the patients should exhibit improved dynamic balance control post game sessions.