Going Out While Staying In: How Recreational Virtual Environment Augmentation Can Motivate Regular Exercise for Older Adult Nursing Home Residents

Research output: Book/ReportPh.D. thesisResearch

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As our age increase, our body starts to lose its potency, until a point, where we lose independence. Regular exercise is a premiere prevention method for such physical decline. However, old age makes exercise more challenging, which can lower the incentive to exercise. Virtual reality (VR) rehabilitation can enhance physical therapy activities and change the user’s perception and experience of the exercise activity, through alternative types of feedback. The goal of this dissertation has been using VR technology to augment a central nursing home exercise activity, to raise exercise motivation with residents. Literature shows how nature exposure in itself is therapeutic. But many nursing home residents and are homebound to their urban surroundings, unless assisted. The VR exercise augmentation gave residents recreational bike rides in virtual nature. Results suggest that the augmentation has had a positive effect on intrinsic motivation to exercise, through noticeably increasing interest and enjoyment of the manuped activity. Motivation effects were tested from both hardware and software, for instance the effects of increasing the immersive system properties through an Oculus Rift, or researching the role of particular virtual environment nature content. Nursing home residents are an incredibly unique user group that needs attention in a world where we are all getting older.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherAalborg Universitetsforlag
Number of pages237
ISBN (Electronic)978-87-7112-745-4
Publication statusPublished - 2016
SeriesPh.d.-serien for Det Teknisk-Naturvidenskabelige Fakultet, Aalborg Universitet


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