The Amulet team has developed a Bluetooth-enabled handle for resistance exercise bands, and recently published a paper assessing the usability of the exercise system. The system wirelessly transmits relative force data through low-energy Bluetooth to a local smartphone or similar device.
The team had 32 young adults participate in three exercise sessions with the exercise band and then used an adapted version of the Usefulness, Satisfaction, and Ease (USE) questionnaire to understand the system’s usability. The questionnaire data reported a positive and consistent user experience; this is a promising indication that the device can be successfully incorporated into exercise interventions and that the system can be further developed and tested for the target population of older adults.
Another recent paper from John Batsis and the Amulet group, highlighting a custom sensor developed by our team and presented at the International Conference on Body Area Networks (ICBAN):
John A. Batsis, George G. Boateng, Lillian M. Seo, Curtis L. Petersen, Karen L. Fortuna, Emily V. Wechsler, Ronald J. Peterson, Summer B. Cook, Dawna Pidgeon, Rachel S. Dokko, Ryan J. Halter, and David F. Kotz. Development and Usability Assessment of a Connected Resistance Exercise Band Application for Strength-Monitoring. World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology, 13(5):340-348, June 2019. DOI 10.5281/zenodo.
Abstract: Resistance exercise bands are a core component of any physical activity strengthening program. Strength training can mitigate the development of sarcopenia, the loss of muscle mass or strength and function with aging. Yet, the adherence of such behavioral exercise strategies in a home-based setting is fraught with issues of monitoring and compliance. Our group developed a Bluetooth-enabled resistance exercise band capable of transmitting data to an open-source platform. In this work, we developed an application to capture this information in real-time and conducted three usability studies in two mixed-aged groups of participants (n=6 each) and a group of older adults with obesity participating in a weight-loss intervention (n=20). The system was favorable, acceptable and provided iterative information that could assist in future deployment on ubiquitous platforms. Our formative work provides the foundation to deliver home-based monitoring interventions in a high-risk, older adult population.