Design guidelines for vibrotactile motion steering

Vibrotactile motion steering is a method to guide people to a desired reference position or movement by applying vibrational stimuli onto subjects’ skin. Vibrotactile motion steering can provide an extra sensory information source and has application potential in a broad number of domains.

The aim of this project is to investigate how subjects can be monitored during effort and steered to a desired reference posture or movement by vibrotactile signals. Integrating vibrotactile guidance requires scientific research to understand subjects’ perception and guidance, enhanced motor performance during use of and/or innovative training methods and long term retention effects, together with design guidelines for wearable haptic systems to achieve posture and movement optimization.

The results and lead up scientific methods will be translated in design guidelines to design a closed loop wearable vibrotactile feedback system for purposes in various applications. The system might have great potential in sports to enhance performance or to warn athletes in dangerous situations. In physiotherapy, it can help patients during their rehabilitation after stroke or surgical operations.

In vibrotactile motion steering, the actual condition is compared with the reference condition and if necessary corrected using vibrations.

Top: the used vibration motors. Below: Attaching the vibrating elements on the skin and the accompanying electronics.

Potential applications, divided according to sensory functionality and retention.