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How Video Game Technology is Revolutionizing Physical Therapy

Posted by Brian Spence on Feb 12, 2016 8:00:00 AM

Kinect, Xbox 360, Physical Therapy, Allied Health, Healthcare StaffingAnyone who has ever said that video games are "just a waste of time" may be in for a big surprise when they learn about all the creative uses of video game technology in the world of healthcare

One of the latest examples is the use of Kinect, Microsoft's addition to their Xbox 360 console, that allows video games to detect physical movements, to assist in the at-home regimen of physical therapy.

A system is being created by Reflexion to help patients who have recently undergone a knee or hip replacement surgery to successfully continue their physical therapy at home. The Kinect based program will walk a patient through their physical therapy routine, providing instruction and correction.

The Kinect can also record the session for the attending physical therapist and provide valuable data that will help the physical therapist see how the therapy is going and what adjustments can be made to better help the patient.

One of the greatest struggles physical therapists face is how to motivate and encourage their patients to persist with their at-home therapy.

A system like this gives a therapist a way to monitor how that therapy is going in intricate detail. According to the Jacksonville Business Journal article, "Brooks Rehab Bringing Microsoft Technology for Physical Therapy Into Patients' Homes" by Colleen Michelle Jones, "If a patient is trying to move their hip to the right but they twist their hip, the system will provide feedback on the screen telling them how to perform the exercise correctly. It picks up the nuances that are really important to a physical therapist."

If you value innovative approaches to physical therapy in your medical practice and are looking for new physical therapists to help you serve your patients, please contact us.

Image courtesy by pcruciatti/

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