Novel Virtual Exercise Partner for Enhancing Aerobic Exercise

 

Executive Summary

 

Maintaining motivation during exercise has been a long standing challenge for those pursuing a fitness routine whether an individual is just starting out or they are a seasoned in exercise enthusiast.  Exercise video games (or exergames) are designed to push the user to perform their best which is necessary for the success of the individual pursuing a fitness goal. Studies have suggested that individuals work harder when in a group setting to avoid being the ‘weak link’.  MSU researchers have developed a strategy to use this group dynamic in exergaming in order to gain the best performance results from the user.

 

Description of Technology

 

MSU researchers have introduced a novel virtual exercise partner that enhances the motivation of the user to continue their exercise in order to reach their fitness goal. In combination with many common exergaming activities, the virtual partner can motivate the user to exercise harder in order to support their partner or team. This technology harnesses the social psychological mechanisms discovered in group dynamic research in order to improve the user’s performance. Additionally, the use of a virtual partner removes the social anxiety a user may have of exercising with a human partner.

 

Key Benefits

  • Exercise motivation: Uses interpersonal and social cues to motivate the user
  • Virtual partner matching for promoting best performance results from the user
  • Reduced social anxiety of players with social physique anxiety

 

Applications

  • Exergames
  • Rehabilitation/Physical therapy
  • Exercise/Gym equipment

 

Licensing Rights Available

 

Exclusive and Non-Exclusive

 

Inventors: Dr. Deborah Feltz, Brian Winn, Dr. Norbert Kerr, William Jeffery, Greg Kozma, Brandon Irwin

 

Tech ID: TEC2011-0097

 

Patent Information:

Category(s):

For Information, Contact:

Jody Lancia
Technology Manager
Michigan State University
lanciajo@msu.edu
Keywords: