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Article

Enabling Immersive Exercise Activities for Older Adults: A Comparison of Virtual Reality Exergames and Traditional Video Exercises

1
Department of Informatics, University of Hamburg, 22527 Hamburg, Germany
2
Statistisches Bundesamt—IT Kompetenzzentrum Auswertung und Analyse, 65189 Wiesbaden, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Kai Erenli, Christopher Kronenberg, Thorsten Haendler and Gregor Wolbring
Received: 28 September 2021 / Revised: 22 October 2021 / Accepted: 5 November 2021 / Published: 9 November 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Impact of Games during the COVID-19 Pandemic)
Participating in cognitive and physical activities can help older adults to live a healthy and independent life. However, with the ongoing pandemic, face-to-face training options became unavailable or limited, yielding a need for alternatives. In this paper, we conducted a user study with older adults (N = 25) to compare a traditional, recorded 2D gymnastics video with an immersive virtual reality (VR) exergame. We evaluated the movement and heart rate of the participants, as well as their enjoyment, attention to the task, and perceived workload. In the VR condition, we additionally assessed their feeling of cybersickness. Finally, qualitative feedback about their preferences was collected. The results indicate that our immersive VR exergame can be a suitable alternative, but not a replacement for traditional 2D video-based exercise activities. Furthermore, the cognitive aspect of exergames can lead to the feeling of physical workload, even if easy movements are performed. Finally, we discuss the implications of our results for future VR exergames and point out advantages and disadvantages of the systems.
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Keywords: virtual reality; exergame; older adults; video exercise virtual reality; exergame; older adults; video exercise
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MDPI and ACS Style

Kruse, L.; Karaosmanoglu, S.; Rings, S.; Ellinger, B.; Steinicke, F. Enabling Immersive Exercise Activities for Older Adults: A Comparison of Virtual Reality Exergames and Traditional Video Exercises. Societies 2021, 11, 134. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/soc11040134

AMA Style

Kruse L, Karaosmanoglu S, Rings S, Ellinger B, Steinicke F. Enabling Immersive Exercise Activities for Older Adults: A Comparison of Virtual Reality Exergames and Traditional Video Exercises. Societies. 2021; 11(4):134. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/soc11040134

Chicago/Turabian Style

Kruse, Lucie, Sukran Karaosmanoglu, Sebastian Rings, Benedikt Ellinger, and Frank Steinicke. 2021. "Enabling Immersive Exercise Activities for Older Adults: A Comparison of Virtual Reality Exergames and Traditional Video Exercises" Societies 11, no. 4: 134. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/soc11040134

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