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Training for physical tasks in virtual environments: Tai Chi

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9 Author(s)
Philo Tan Chua ; Entertainment Technol. Center, Carnegie Mellon Univ., Pittsburgh, PA, USA ; Crivella, R. ; Daly, B. ; Ning Hu
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We present a wireless virtual reality system and a prototype full body Tai Chi training application. Our primary contribution is the creation of a virtual reality system that tracks the full body in a working volume of 4 meters by 5 meters by 2.3 meters high to produce an animated representation of the user with 42 degrees of freedom. This - combined with a lightweight (<3 pounds) belt-worn video receiver and head-mounted display - provides a wide area, untethered virtual environment that allows exploration of new application areas. Our secondary contribution is our attempt to show that user interface techniques made possible by such a system can improve training for a full body motor task. We tested several immersive techniques, such as providing multiple copies of a teacher's body positioned around the student and allowing the student to superimpose his body directly over the virtual teacher None of these techniques proved significantly better than mimicking traditional Tai Chi instruction, where we provided one virtual teacher directly in front of the student. We consider the implications of these findings for future motion training tasks.

Published in:

Virtual Reality, 2003. Proceedings. IEEE

Date of Conference:

22-26 March 2003