Soniya Bhagat, Ying Tung Yeh
Cerebral Palsy is a disorder with a range of symptoms characterized by physical and mental impairment due to abnormal brain development. Approximately 500,000 children and adults are affected, with about 8,000 babies and 1,200-1,500 preschool age children being diagnosed each year. Previous work has shown that a virtual reality therapy game coupled with a social robot can improve the efficacy of rehabilitation outcomes on individuals with or without cerebral palsy. Our research focuses on using socially interactive robot as a therapeutic coach for children with cerebral palsy in rehabilitation scenarios. Unlike our previous studies, this study focuses on a real-world kinematic reaching task. Major symptoms of cerebral palsy include poor coordination, difficulty with movement, abnormal reflexes, and difficulty maintaining posture. The ReACH Game is designed to exercise everyday motions through repetitive arm movements. The main components of this system include the robot NAO, a structural frame, two targets, touch sensor, and a custom Arduino program. A pilot study was conducted to evaluate the usability of this device. The result provides us a baseline movement time for users when completing a basic reaching task. Furthermore, it gives valuable insight into next iteration development and design of this system.