The work group wearHEALTH researches and develops mobile and wearable health systems for prevention and rehabilitation, in particular:
Along these application scenarios we address the following research lines:
- Self-configuring, ambulatory motion capturing and analysis
- Customizable, motivating user interfaces
As an integral part of our interdisciplinary research, we also investigate ethical, legal, and social implications of the developed mobile health systems. Here, the focus is on respecting autonomy, data protection and privacy, effectiveness of incentives in the health context as well as on technology acceptance. We deal with these issues in consultation with our partners at the University of Kaiserslautern, the network of interdisciplinary competence centers in Germany and our mentors.
Wearable systems to support motion analysis
The work group develops mobile assistance systems based on wearable sensors, which can assist physicians, physiotherapists, and patients in musculoskeletal rehabilitation. Parts of this are an easily usable, mobile motion analysis system for interactive assessments and mobile systems to support self-training. One challenge is the development of a self-configuring, ambulatory motion capturing and analysis system for determining relevant movement parameters. A further challenge is the use of this technology for customizable, motivating user interfaces, which provide user-adapted feedback and support (treatment) adherence.
Stress management apps to promote a healthy lifestyle
The work group develops mobile application (apps) supporting users in building up and maintaining a health-conscious behavior and dealing with stress. Behavior refers to various stress-relevant factors such as sleep, diet, physical activity, emotional state, and perception of daily uplifts and hassles. In addition to making the user familiar with various stress management techniques through digital media, the group also uses wearables to provide biofeedback for supporting relaxation exercises. The apps were initially developed for the purpose of primary prevention. User feedback from longitudinal field studies allows further improvement of the apps using an iterative and incremental approach. The resulting health app "Stress-Mentor" is available for free for Android devices since February 2019 (German language only for now). Since 2017, this app is further developed for the accompanying use during rehabilitation for chronic pain patients (Schmerz-Mentor) in cooperation with the University Hospital Halle (Saale) (Dr. Katja Regenspurger). Here, one challenge is to design customizable, motivating user interfaces that support sustainable behavioral changes.