Design and Development of a Novel Balancer With Variable Difficulty for Training and EvaluationBy Ang, W.T.; Tan, U.-X.; Tan, H.G.; Myo, T.; Ng, C.K.; Koh, K.L.; Cheam, B.S.; Disability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology, Vol. 3, No. 6, pp. 325-331
Publication Date: November 2008
Paper presents a portable, cost-effective balance trainer for use in the rehabilitation of patients post stroke, brain injury, or sports-related injuries. The Pro.Balance, developed at the Singapore General Hospital in Singapore, is described as a circular platform with a tilt of up to plus or minus 10 degrees in both forward/backward and left/right directions. Eight springs placed symmetrically around the center of the platform provide balance assistance. The springs can be varied in the radial direction to change the amount of assistance provided, thus varying the difficulty levels. Tilt angles are provided using an internal micro electro-mechanical system (MEMS) accelerometer. The Pro.Balance connects to any computer through a USB cable, which provides the power and receives information from the sensors to monitor and record data about the user’s balancing ability. These data can be used for monitoring outcomes of treatments of functional instability, and for assessing risk of lower-limb injuries caused by poor balance. Games are used to stimulate the user’s interest in the balance training. These games are controlled by the position of the top platform; tilting the platform front/back/left/right will move the cursor on the computer screen up/down/left/right. The games offer another form of performance measurement by comparing the time taken and game scores.
Published by: Taylor & Francis, Limited (Website:http://taylorandfrancis.org)
International Society of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (Web Site: http://www.isprm.org )
Link to text: http://www.informaworld.com/smpp/content~db=all~content=a907304448