Every year, tens of thousands of people are injured playing sports in the United States. In high contact sports especially, many patients need extensive physical therapy to fully recover. We set out to provide a tool for cheaper and more effective long-term rehabilitation of athletes suffering from these kinds of injuries. Specifically, we wanted to come up with a solution that made physical therapy more enjoyable and accessible.
What it does
Our virtual experience includes three different exercises to help people with neck injuries. The goal is to improve the outcome of neck injuries by visually guiding the patient through various muscular exercises. For young patients, this "gameification" will make therapy more fun and likely to succeed.
How we built it
We developed Limber over the course of 24 hours using state-of-the-art web technology, such as Mozilla's A-Frame library. By building our product on a web platform, we maximize the number of supported devices and reach more people. For example, we have tested our product on both the Oculus Rift and Google Cardboard.
Challenges we ran into
Virtual reality is still in its infancy, and hardware support is quite limited on some platforms. Early in development, it was extremely difficult to test our product, since we lacked a supported device. We did not let these issues discourage us; instead, they motivated us to think more carefully about our design. In the end, by focusing support on mobile VR, we made Limber more accessible for low-end hardware.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We successfully implemented a complex and highly-interactive virtual reality environment in a very small span of time. We are also very proud of our product's ability to help people in need of what can be expensive and time-consuming therapy.
What we learned
Our development team learned how to manage time-related challenges while working effectively under extreme pressure.
What's next for Limber
We would like to improve the overall product by adding a voice-accessible assistant, more fluid animations, additional game mechanics, and better tracking/analytics for various other sports injuries.