Robot-Supported Multiplayer Rehabilitation: Feasibility Study of Haptically Linked Patient-Spouse Training

Multiplayer environments are thought to increase and prolongate active participation in robot-aided rehabilitation. We expect that environments linking patients with their spouses will particularly foster active participation. Thus, we developed two multiplayer games to link the game experience of two players: an Air Hockey game and a Haptic Kitchen game. In the competitive Air Hockey game, differences in skill levels between players were balanced by individualizing haptic guidance or damping forces. In the Haptic Kitchen game, a healthy player could support the patient's movements using a virtual force field. The two players could control the haptic interaction since both the force field and the point of application were visualized. We tested the haptic performance balancing algorithm of the Air Hockey game and the spouse-controlled haptic support of the Kitchen game with patients post-stroke who trained both single- (i.e., alone) and multiplayer training (i.e., with spouse) in eight therapy sessions lasting 45 min each. Mean total rating in Intrinsic Motivation Inventory was 46.9 points (out of 63 points) for multiplayer modes, and 42.7 points for single player modes, respectively. The spouses applied the haptic support in the Haptic Kitchen game during 42 % of the total game duration. We are currently testing more patient-spouse couples to better understand the effects of using these haptic approaches on the behavior and recovery of patients. We foresee this approach can improve the motivation during training and positively influence the at-home behavior of patients, an important goal of rehabilitation training efforts.

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2018 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), Madrid, Spain, October 1-5, 2018
Jan 07 2019
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 Record created 2019-10-31, last modified 2019-11-05

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