Taiwan university develops VR horseback riding simulator for rehab

National Pingtung University's riding simulator safe, easy to maintain, livens up rehab experience

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VR horseback riding simulator for rehab

VR horseback riding simulator for rehab (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A virtual reality horseback riding simulator developed for rehabilitation purposes by National Pingtung University in Taiwan is being touted as an innovation that adds fun to what is otherwise often a tedious process.

In collaboration with Golden Hospital in the southern county of Pingtung, National Pingtung University developed the system utilizing VR technologies and interactive games. It is aimed at making the rehabilitation experience more interesting and increasing patients’ willingness to take part in therapeutic sessions, reported CNA.

The system claimed third place in the immersive experience category of a nationwide university competition that encourages the development of smart technologies and cross-over projects, according to the report.

Equestrian therapy that involves riding real horses has been criticized as dangerous and costly, said Huang Cheng-chi (黃鎮淇), vice dean of the College of Computer Science of National Pingtung University. With the simulator, patients, especially those suffering cerebral palsy, will receive safe treatment, he added.

The computerized rehab device allows for better maintenance and adjustment of the intensity of the riding motion. Individuals living in remote areas will also benefit from the easily replicable and accessible system, wrote CNA.