In Finland, when it comes to future technology in conjunction with walking aids, the newly developed WHEELLATOR® by TUKIMET OY has been the focus of attention for a multidisciplinary research group of the Satakunta University of Applied Sciences (SAMK).
The research team consists of health, technology, business, and art professionals, as well as artificial intelligence and automation research groups and together with TUKIMET OY they aim to develop future on-demand tools in conjunction with intelligent assistants.
Having discovered that, in addition to the end users of walking aids, also healthcare professionals have a need for new types of technology and measures, the Finnish researchers have incorporated these needs into a demo concept called WheelTravel. While people focus on new means of physical activity, the demo concept for health professionals includes a set of measures to better monitor the actual use of walking aids.
The focus of this cooperation project of TUKIMET OY and SAMK is the WheelTravel concept, a mixture of sensor technology, motivation and walking aids. The WheelTravel concept originated from a practical research in connection with the WHEELLATOR®, in which besides the development of prototypes also the user groups were intensively integrated.
On the basis of the evaluations, the researchers have developed a mobile app that is connected to a sensor on the WHEELLATOR®. It offers a variety of tools and functions. The sensor communicates with a Motivational application on the tablet, which keeps the user motivated and also provides
information about their current progress along with recorded parameters such as distance, time and intensity of the movement.
Users go on a virtual journey
With the app, the user embarks on a virtual journey, which they can follow on a tablet. The user can enter locations and current movement distances in the app that scales virtual travel to the actual travel distance. While walking, the user can then follow their own progress on the screen.
After initial test results, the researchers have added additional motivational elements such as Google Street View and also images that are related to corresponding positions on the map. The various applications of the mobile app together with the WHEELLATOR® are suitable for remote rehabilitation and home rehabilitation and also provide information on personal development.
More about this topic can be found in our report:
Technology around the WHEELATOR is being expanded
SAMK – Finland