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Brief Report

Immersive Virtual Reality Exergame Promotes the Practice of Physical Activity in Older People: An Opportunity during COVID-19

1
HealthyFit Research Group, Department of Functional Biology and Health Sciences, Faculty of Physiotherapy, Galicia Sur Health Research Institute (IIS Galicia Sur), University of Vigo, E-36005 Pontevedra, Spain
2
HealthyFit Research Group, Department of Special Didactics, Faculty of Education and Sports Science, Galicia Sur Health Research Institute (IIS Galicia Sur), University of Vigo, E-36005 Pontevedra, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Mark Billinghurst
Multimodal Technol. Interact. 2021, 5(9), 52; https://doi.org/10.3390/mti5090052
Received: 5 August 2021 / Revised: 21 August 2021 / Accepted: 25 August 2021 / Published: 1 September 2021
Life expectancy has increased in recent years. Physical activity has been postulated as a key element in active aging strategies. However, adherence to physical exercise programs has traditionally been low among the elderly, and the current situation of the COVID-19 pandemic has added extra impediments. Immersive virtual reality (IVR) devices could motivate this population to practice exercise. This study aimed to analyse the use of IVR exergames as a tool to facilitate physical exercise in older people. Four healthy older adults (males, 65–77 years) participated in the study. They carried out two exergaming sessions with HTC Vive ProTM. Outcomes were evaluated using the Simulator Sickness Questionnaire (SSQ), System Usability Scale (SUS), Game Experience Questionnaire (GEQ post-game module), an ad hoc satisfaction questionnaire, and perceived effort. All participants completed the sessions without adverse effects, with no SSQ symptoms reported. SUS scores were high in both sessions (SUS > 85/100). Post-game GEQ scores were 3.08–3.41/4 (positive experiences) and 0.08–0.16/4 (negative experiences). Opinions showed high levels of satisfaction with the experience. Exergaming programs, based on commercial head-mounted displays, are a feasible alternative to traditional senior exercise, and could be a solution to the current situation that has arisen from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. View Full-Text
Keywords: virtual reality; older adults; video games; healthy aging; exergaming; health promotion; games for health; physical therapy modalities virtual reality; older adults; video games; healthy aging; exergaming; health promotion; games for health; physical therapy modalities
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MDPI and ACS Style

Campo-Prieto, P.; Rodríguez-Fuentes, G.; Cancela-Carral, J.M. Immersive Virtual Reality Exergame Promotes the Practice of Physical Activity in Older People: An Opportunity during COVID-19. Multimodal Technol. Interact. 2021, 5, 52. https://doi.org/10.3390/mti5090052

AMA Style

Campo-Prieto P, Rodríguez-Fuentes G, Cancela-Carral JM. Immersive Virtual Reality Exergame Promotes the Practice of Physical Activity in Older People: An Opportunity during COVID-19. Multimodal Technologies and Interaction. 2021; 5(9):52. https://doi.org/10.3390/mti5090052

Chicago/Turabian Style

Campo-Prieto, Pablo, Gustavo Rodríguez-Fuentes, and José Mª Cancela-Carral. 2021. "Immersive Virtual Reality Exergame Promotes the Practice of Physical Activity in Older People: An Opportunity during COVID-19" Multimodal Technologies and Interaction 5, no. 9: 52. https://doi.org/10.3390/mti5090052

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