Serious Games Are Not Serious Enough for Myoelectric Prosthetics

Christian Alexander Garske, Matthew Dyson, Sigrid Dupan, Graham Morgan, Kianoush Nazarpour

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Serious games show a lot of potential for use in movement rehabilitation (eg, after a stroke, injury to the spinal cord, or limb loss). However, the nature of this research leads to diversity both in the background of the researchers and in the approaches of their investigation. Our close examination and categorization of virtual training software for upper limb prosthetic rehabilitation found that researchers typically followed one of two broad approaches: (1) focusing on the game design aspects to increase engagement and muscle training and (2) concentrating on an accurate representation of prosthetic training tasks, to induce task-specific skill transfer. Previous studies indicate muscle training alone does not lead to improved prosthetic control without a transfer-enabling task structure. However, the literature shows a recent surge in the number of game-based prosthetic training tools, which focus on engagement without heeding the importance of skill transfer. This influx appears to have been strongly influenced by the availability of both software and hardware, specifically the launch of a commercially available acquisition device and freely available high-profile game development engines. In this Viewpoint, we share our perspective on the current trends and progress of serious games for prosthetic training.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere28079
Number of pages12
JournalJMIR Serious Games
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 8 Nov 2021

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • rehabilitation
  • serious games
  • engagement
  • transfer
  • upper limb
  • arm prosthesis
  • virtual training
  • virtual games


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