Gaming to help rehabilitation

There is a need in health care for global, genuinely effective, easy to use digital solutions for rehabilitation. The joint research by the Turku University of Applied Sciences, University of Oulu, and University of Jyväskylä is looking into how effective current rehabilitation games are.

The research project Business Ecosystems in Effective Exergaming (BEE) is funded by Tekes. The project answers the growing global need for digital health care technological solutions and for new effective methods in rehabilitation and health care. The project will include an extensive effectivity study on rehabilitation solutions based on “exergaming”, video games in the form of exercise, which will support the business opportunities of the field also internationally. The project will boost the commercialization preconditions of products by Finnish companies and their export potential especially for Asian markets.

The research project includes a large selection of companies in the fields of rehabilitation, games, and technology. The solutions these companies provide will be tested to find the best solution for the effectivity study. The markets are large and international. The companies involved are Suunto, PhysioTools, SE Innovations, eHoiva, Lingsoft, GoodLife Technologies, and a health technology company from China.

”Research institutions have a central role as enablers for the change of ways of operating, and as developers of international business”, says Mika Luimula, who is the person in charge of research in the Turku University of Applied Sciences.

”In this research project, we are trying to figure out how usable, practicable, and most of all, how effective for the rehabilitation process these rehabilitation methods are”, says professor Ari Heinonen from the Faculty of Sport and Health Sciences in the University of Jyväskylä.

New method and cooperation model

From the viewpoint of technological development, we already have most of the tools for digitalization, i.e. the technical solutions. Therefore, we need no longer develop the sensors and the equipment. The technological aspect of the project is in compatibility, effectiveness, and in the building of a model of cooperation together with the participants.

The aim of the project is to design and implement a new method for the field of rehabilitation, based on the architecture described in the project plan. In addition, close cooperation with partners in China, Japan and Singapore will open doors for Finnish companies abroad.

”The project will test the architecture bit by bit with various technological experiments, and by developing the background system. The testing will continue with usability and effectiveness studies, and alongside with it there will be constant dialogue with corporate relations partners, aiming for the creation of an international business ecosystem”, says Luimula.

Last updated: 6.6.2017