Linked Wii Balance Boards Help Children Learn Balance SkillsBy Coxworth, Ben; Gizmag,
Publication Date: April 15, 2011
Article features the Equiliberator, a Wii based balance training system for children with physical disabilities such as cerebral palsy, spina bifida, and lower extremity amputations. The system was developed by engineering students at Houston’s Rice University at the request of The Movement Analysis Laboratory at Shriners Hospitals for Children in Utah. The Equiliberator consists of 5 linked Wii Balance Boards with 2 pressure sensitive hand rails running along either side, all of which are linked by Bluetooth to a PC running a video game. The Balance Boards form a straight runway along the floor and are covered with an acrylic sheet to keep the children from tripping over the gaps between boards. Playing the video game, children are able to kill on-screen monsters by successfully performing exercises that build their balance skills. Actions that must be taken to kill the monsters include stopping and balancing on the spot and turning around. The better the children get at the game, the harder the challenges become, and the potential for scoring high points increases accordingly. The pressure detection built into the handrails is intended for determining how much the users are relying on the handrails for maintaining balance. The Equiliberator is intended for use by children 6 to 18 years of age.
Published by: Gizmag Pty Ltd (Website:http://www.gizmag.com/)
Link to text: http://www.gizmag.com/wii-based-equiliberator-builds-balance-skills/18414/