Diet and Exercise for Seniors


The technology as a whole has a big future for the senior industry. According to Aging in Place Technology, “It’s a user interface that begs to be applied to caregiving, family communication and home health applications.”

This new gaming category has garnered its own term – exergaming – which defines video games that are also a form of exercise. It is recognized for reversing the stereotype that gaming is a sedentary activity by promoting an active lifestyle. First introduced in 2003, Bill Gates and Microsoft presented a video game that included a bike. Since then, video games in this special class have generated a lot of interest in the health care and senior wellness sectors. It will continue to gain a reputation for promoting positive rehabilitation results and good health for seniors.

Companies like Log-Tek USA have taken the Kinect technology and developed a functional tool specifically for physical therapists and occupational therapists to use with patients. This tool is called SHAPES, Spatially and Human Aware Performance Evaluation System.

SHAPES requires an Internet connection for both patient and therapist. The system allows a therapist to record multiple full-bodied motion therapy sessions to model exercises for either a group of patients or customize a session for an individual patient. The patient stands in front of the sensor device, starts the video session that was recorded by the therapist, and performs the exercises that are on the screen. The patient’s performance is captured in the system as he is following the session on the screen. SHAPES provides real-time feedback to the patient about how accurate he is in completing the exercise and also stores the data for later analysis by the therapist. Once the therapist has reviewed and evaluated the data from a remote location, he can make adjustments to the routine by updating the video session or make recommendations for improving the exercise session based on that data.

The real-time accuracy feedback by SHAPES ensures that the patient understands the exercises he is performing while he is participating. He can correct improper form during the session, which supports proper execution of the exercises even without the therapist in the room. The patient is assured personal attention and support for their recovery needs because both the patient and therapist can track progress toward a recovery goal and identify areas of difficulty in performing exercises.

Another company, GestureTek, offers its Interactive Rehabilitation and Exercise System (IREX), which places patients into a therapist-prescribed exercise regime through virtual sport or gaming environments where they encounter on-screen images and objects that are “designed to enhance the sense of ‘presence’ for the patient.” Real-time visual and auditory feedback provide increased stimulation for the patient. The therapists can customize a fun and interactive exercise program that tests and strengthens single joints, combined joint movements, or full body function, improving range and control of motion and balance.

The Kinect technology provides seniors with an entertaining way of staying active and engaging in therapy, which will encourage them to participate and follow through on the prescribed therapy. Whether in their own homes or at a care facility, seniors will benefit from the easy access and the simplicity of this method and have opportunity for improved health.

Reprinted by

Always Best Care Senior Services with permission from the Society of Certified Senior Advisors.
The Certified Senior Advisor (CSA) program provides the advanced knowledge and practical tools to serve seniors at the highest level possible while providing recipients a powerful credential that increases their competitive advantage over other professionals. The CSA works closely with Always Best Care Senior Services to help ABC business owners understand how to build effective relationships with seniors based on a broad-based knowledge of the health, social and financial issues that are important to seniors, and the dynamics of how these factors work together in seniors’ lives. To be a Certified Senior Advisor (CSA) means one willingly accepts and vigilantly upholds the standards in the CSA Code of Professional Responsibility. These standards define the behavior that we owe to seniors, to ourselves, and to our fellow CSAs. The reputation built over the years by the hard work and high standards of CSAs flows to everyone who adds the designation to their name.

Always Best Care Senior Services
Always Best Care Senior Services (www.alwaysbestcare.com/) is based on the belief that having the right people for the right level of care means peace of mind for the client and family. Always Best Care Senior Services has assisted over 25,000 seniors, representing a wide range of illnesses and personal needs. This has established the company as one of the premier providers of in-home care, assisted living placement assistance, and skilled home health care.

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