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Thursday, June 27 • 11:00am - 11:30am
Bringing Action to Exergames for Children with Cerebral Palsy

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Cerebral Palsy is a neurological disorder characterized by deficits in gross motor control and manual ability. Children with cerebral palsy often have difficulty engaging in casual exercise such as going for a bike ride or kicking around a ball with their friends. This can contribute to loss of mobility as the children grow.

Exergames, video games with an exercise component, represent a promising approach to helping children with CP to be more physically active. We have found that children with CP want to play fast-paced action videogames similar to those played by their friends without motor disabilities. This is particularly true of exergames, whose physical activity matches the fast-pace of action games. However, disabilities associated with CP can make it difficult to play action games.

Existing guidelines for developing games for people with motor disabilities can lead to slow-paced games that are accessible, but may lack the fun of fast-paced action games.

Through a year-long participatory design process with children with CP, we have discovered that it is in fact possible to develop action exergames for children with CP at level III on the Gross Motor Function Classification Scale.

We have developed and tested six fast-paced action exergames for children with CP. We have produced a revised set of design guidelines for games for children with CP, which retain the core principles of existing guidelines, while being compatible with fast-paced action.

The results of a follow up 8-week home trial showed high overall enjoyment and adherence. Players’ interest held up so strongly that more minutes were played in the final week than the first.


Speakers
avatar for Hamilton A Hernandez

Hamilton A Hernandez

PhD Student, Queen's University
I love exercise and used to be a hardcore gamer. Now I do research on exercise video games (exergames) for children with motor disabilities.


Thursday June 27, 2013 11:00am - 11:30am
Room B: Back Bay Grand

Attendees (6)