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GEWOS – Healthy living in style

The project GEWOS – Gesund Wohnen mit Stil (Living healthily in style) funded by the German Ministry for Education and Research developed an exercise chair that motivates the elderly to exercise more and offers and supports further constitutional measures. This three-year development (2010-2013) was coordinated by ISA Informationssysteme GmbH. The other partners were EnOcean, Fraunhofer IIS, himolla Polstermöbel, Innovationsmanufaktur, Sophia and the Technische Universität München with the chairs „Preventive Pediatrics“ and „Construction Realization and Robotics“.

In order to improve the general quality of life and to avoid the need for stays in the hospital, primary prevention (that is, fitness) is key in order to prevent sickness and frailty. The most important thing in this is finding out what motivates the end users: Most people do know that exercise is important and still do nothing about it. The consortium designed a poster to better understand motivators and barriers that is a big help not only to GEWOS but also to other AAL projects. The poster was awarded the Best Poster Award at the AAL Congress 2011.

The GEWOS exercise chair measures various vital signs and motivates a sitting person to exercise but at the same time does not look like a fitness machine but like a comfortable armchair that fits well into any living room. The TV – also an everyday appliance – serves as interface saving data and information, generating exercises and training schedules, and offering contact to care givers.

The different components of the exercise chair are:

  • Exercise games; utilizing pressure-sensitive sensors in the seating and the back rest
  • Dynamic training schedules: exercises that are visualized in the TV and executed while sitting
  • Rowing with a mechanism that is integrated into the arm and the foot rests.

Four different types of schedule concentrate respectively on strength, mixed, endurance, or stretching. The concept of GEWOS is that the user takes various fitness and motoric tests every four weeks which then form the basis of the individual training schedules. It there are no current test results, the schedules are generated on the basis of a questionnaire or the user’s self-assessment.

At the end of the project in September 2013, the GEWOS system also measured certain values (pulse, oxygen saturation, heartbeat, pressure distribution, and strokes) and evaluated vital signs (Body Mass Index, stress, frequency of training).

 

You can find more information on the project here: www.gewos.org (in German only).

Your contacts for this project are Martin Strehler and Steffi Erdt

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