The Design and Evaluation of an Interactive Musical Staircase on Physical Rehabilitation Therapies for Children

Abstract

Stair-climbing is an important skill for promoting independence and activities of daily life and is a key component of rehabilitation therapies for physically disabled children. This thesis describes the design and evaluation of an interactive musical stairs system for children engaged in stairclimbing physical therapies. The achievement of a targeted therapeutic goal, namely, use of reciprocal steps, was significantly increased by 6% [SD=7%] (p=0.007) with the presence of audio feedback. Levels of participant enjoyment and motivation increased as well. This led to the development of an automated system, using inertial sensors to detect initial contact (IC) events each time a child makes a step, to trigger audio feedback. A semi-generic algorithm was designed that was able to detect 96% [SD=3%] of IC events during stair-climbing therapy sessions. This thesis lays the groundwork for future longitudinal research investigating the efficacy of audio feedback in stair-climbing and other rehabilitation therapies as well.

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Cite this paper

@inproceedings{Khan2012TheDA, title={The Design and Evaluation of an Interactive Musical Staircase on Physical Rehabilitation Therapies for Children}, author={Ajmal Khan}, year={2012} }