Chi Sparks 2014 — “Creating the Difference”
The Hague University of Applied Sciences, The Hague

Creating the Difference

REHAP – Modular and Interactive Rehabilitation Tiles

This paper describes the vision behind and development of a modular and interactive tile system, designed for patients suffering from a stroke. Traditional rehabilitation techniques are mainly based on mechanical structures and passive materials and are used in an improvising way by physiotherapists. On the other hand we see large-scale products equipped with a big amount of sensors and possibilities, however these are mostly complicated for both therapists and patients. In collaboration with medical researchers and practitioners a vision for individual and personalisable products has been formed. Observing and understanding the current situation in a stroke unit in a hospital in Sydney showed the strengths and on the other hand the needs of practitioners. Responding to this a modular and interactive approach was opted, which allows therapists to create exercises for single patients. Essential factors for physical rehabilitation are motivation, customization and independence. By using techniques like force sensitive resistors, magnetic and spring-loaded connections and 3D printing, several sets of pressure sensitive floor tiles and a corresponding graphical interface with visual feedback have been produced, which are demo versions and frequently used as in-situ prototypes in hospitals in rehabilitation practices.