baaria chaudhary

mixed reality artist | storyteller | postcard maker

city therapy

Inspired by our fellow classmate's recent arm injury, City Therapy VR is a low-cost, accessible virtual reality physical therapy treatment. Current physical therapy routines for broken bones and replaced hips are dull and painful, with no method of distraction or motivation. With the $20 Google Cardboard, a smartphone, and an Arduino, patients can look forward their daily physical therapy routine, now a city-building virtual reality game controlled by the movements of the limb being stretched.

In the Cardboard headset, the patient is introduced to the game, where they become a mayor at a desolate city they must rebuild. As the therapy progresses, the game encourages greater range of motion with a reward system. The greater the angle of movement, the more efficiently the buildings will be destroyed, and the more the created buildings will tower over the others.

  • collaborators: marjorie wang, danny kong, & joshua cheng
  • tools: unity3d, c#, adobe illustrator
  • made for: hack nyu 2017
  • project date: february 2017

My grandmother needs physical therapy for her hip but doesn’t do the daily exercises because of its dull nature. Our classmate also recently broke her arm but doesn’t perform her nightly wrist twists. Seeing people all around us disregard their prescribed exercise, we were inspired to make it a more fun and engaging endeavor. If physical therapy can have a game component, wouldn’t it be easier for patients to do their exercise and get better faster?
Project 01a
If the person turns their wrist left to right while looking at a particular building in Google Cardboard, the building gets destroyed. If the person raises their ulna up to their humerus, another building gets raised up.
Project 01b
Our current demo is designed for two physical therapy exercises prescribed to a broken arm– rotation of the wrist and extension of the arm at the elbow. With rotation of the wrist (captured by the wearable accelerometer), the player clears the existing skyscrapers and with extension of the arm, raises buildings from the ground. e greater the angle of movement, the more efficiently the buildings will be destroyed, and the more the created buildings will tower over the others.
Project 01c
The wearable accelerometer sends information to an arduino to process the data into usable numbers which are then fed into Unity by the bluetooth module. The data allows the player to interact in the game, building or destroying his or her city.