In the first phase, Serious Games will develop an application for PhysioTools, the global market leader in exercise software. This application can be used by physiotherapists and their clients to communicate and send training programs.
“Currently all training programs are transferred in the traditional way via paper or email. However, with the proliferation of smartphones and tablet devices, physiotherapy clients’ expectations have changed, which is why we are bringing these applications to the market. They enable both parties to communicate with each other” says Mark Musgrove, chairman of PhysioTools.
In the second phase, the project will develop a vast movement library. This library will allow clients to do their physiotherapy exercises using their computers and motion detectors.
“Initially, Microsoft’s Kinect for Windows will be used as the motion detector. It is very accurate, yet inexpensive and thus available to everyone. Our goal is to have over 200 different movements in the library by early next year. This will enable clients to practice repetitions in a brand new way” comments Janne Niittymäki, product development director for Serious Games Finland.
“From the physiotherapist’s point of view, training with the motion detector enhances client contact because the physiotherapist can see how the client has practiced at home. Therefore the quality of the overall process is a lot higher” says Mark Musgrove.
In the third phase, Serious Games and PhysioTools plan to combine entertainment games with modelled physiotherapy movements.
“There is a game called Liitäjä in test use already, designed to help people recover from a stroke. We already know that gamification of physiotherapy really works. Clients home training motivation will increase significantly when exercises are meaningful” says Niittymäki.
The aim is for Serious Games and PhysioTools to have the whole service ready for the market during 2014, with the first part of the service available for customers by the end of this year.
Serious Games Finland Oy, Kotka, Finland is a company focused on serious games. Liitäjä game was co-developed with Carea, the health care district of Kymenlaakso in Finland. It has been tested around Carea’s offices for more than a year. Liitäjä was originally developed for stroke patients in order to help them to recover. www.seriousgames.fi