Engagement Study of an Integrated Rehabilitation Robotic Tablet-Based Gaming System
English, Brittney A.
Howard, Ayanna M.
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Physical therapy is a common treatment for the rehabilitation of hemiparesis, or the weakness of one side of the body. However, a significant issue in the therapy process is that patients may struggle with motivation to complete the required therapy sessions. For this purpose, a rehabilitation gaming system was created that combines a hand rehabilitation robot with a gaming application on a tablet to promote engagement and discourage boredom. A study was also conducted to compare engagement between the gaming system and traditional therapeutic exercises. The results of this study show that participants prefer playing rehabilitation games more than they do exercising with traditional rehabilitation methods. On average, participants spent approximately four times longer playing the rehabilitation game before becoming bored than they did with traditional exercises. From their responses to the retrospective survey, the participants experienced significantly more enjoyment and engagement when exercising with the tablet game. They also experienced significantly less boredom. The participants unanimously agreed that if they were required to exercise their wrists for an hour a day, as is a normal requirement for patients in stroke therapy, that they would prefer to do so by playing the tablet game.