A Scoping Review of Exergaming for Adults with Systemic Disabling Conditions
Journal of Bioengineering and Biomedical Sciences
Exergaming, or playing a game on a television, computer or projector screen with a motion-monitoring system to enable control of on-screen action by bodily movements that result in a substantially greater expenditure of energy compared to resting levels, may be particularly relevant for adults with systemic disabling conditions because of its potential to increase health and function and improve adherence to rehabilitation/exercise programs. Thus, we conducted a scoping review of the literature
... on examining the usability and utility of low-cost exergaming technology in adults with systemic disabling conditions. Methods: Comprehensive strategies were used to search for studies published or in-press between 1980 and July, 2011. Main inclusion-exclusion criteria were studies that examined the usability or utility of affordable exergaming technology (e.g., excluding fully immersive virtual reality platforms) in adults with systemic disabling conditions. We used the User-Orientation Evaluation Framework, GameFlow model, and Dobkin's framework on the progressive staging of pilot studies to determine the scope and quality of the existing literature. Results: We identified 25 studies, which reported on 346 adults with disabling conditions. Most participants were male and stroke survivors. Only four studies employed a randomized controlled trial design and most studies were classified in the consideration-of-concept stage, according to Dobkin's framework. Few studies were comprehensive in their usability assessment. Common exergaming technology platforms examined were Sony PlayStation EyeToy, Nintendo Wii, and technology developed by the researchers of the study. Eight adverse events were reported across the 25 studies. Conclusions: Research on exergaming using affordable exergaming technology platforms is still in its infancy. We recommend that randomized controlled trials be conducted with a long-term follow-up that employs a mixedmethods approach to collecting data. Multidisciplinary collaborations among exercise physiologist, behavioral scientist, rehabilitation scientist and neuromotor control experts are needed to advance the field and identify possible mechanisms of action.