StraightenUp: Implementation and Evaluation of a Spine Posture Wearable
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Human posture and activity levels are indicators for assessing health and quality of life. Maintaining improper posture for an extended period of time can lead to health issues, e.g. improper alignment of the vertebrae and accelerated degenerative disc. This, in turn, can be the cause of back pain, neurological deterioration, deformity, and cosmetic issues. Some wearable prototypes have been proposed for spine posture monitoring, however, there has not been enough consideration for the users’ experience with these devices, to understand which characteristics are central to acceptance and long-term use. This paper presents a prototype of a low-cost spine posture wearable, along with its preliminary evaluation, which aims both to confirm that the wearable can measure spine posture and to evaluate user experience with this device. The results show that the wearable was comfortable, causing a sensation of security, and that feedback to users would be needed to help improve posture. Further work is required to make sure the device is easy to put on and remove, and discreet enough to be worn in public.
This project was supported partially by CONICYT-PCHA/Doctorado Nacional/2014-63140077, CONICIT and MICIT Costa Rica PhD scholarship grant, Universidad de Costa Rica and CONICYT/FONDECYT No1150365 (Chile).
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