Zimmer MedizinSysteme GmbH / icelab
Zimmer MedizinSysteme GmbH / icelab
Zimmer MedizinSysteme GmbH / icelab
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Health Club Management

Health Club Management

features

People: Isabel Van De Keere, Immersive Rehab

CEO and founder, Immersive Rehab

Published in Health Club Management 2017 issue 9
DR Isabel Van De Keere
DR Isabel Van De Keere
If there was a physio clinic in the gym, with VR equipment, patients might be more motivated to do their exercises

Immersive’ is the buzzword in fitness at the moment, as gyms and suppliers strive to find new ways to make people forget they’re exercising. Now, healthtech entrepreneur Dr Isabel Van De Keere is applying the same principle to the area of rehabilitation.

Last year the former medical technology consultant founded Immersive Rehab – a startup that creates virtual reality (VR) games designed to increase the effectiveness of physical rehabilitation after injury.

“Traditional physiotherapy is quite boring for the patient,” says Dr Van De Keere. “People get demotivated and frustrated.”

On the gym floor
This is particularly true for injured gym-goers. Many are non-compliant with the physiotherapist-prescribed exercises they need to do to get back into action – further delaying their recovery. But Dr Van De Keere believes that the introduction of VR machines in gyms could change this.

“When physios give patients an exercise to do at home, most people don’t do it. But if there was a physio clinic in the gym, with VR equipment, people might be more motivated to do their prescribed exercises there. That way they can still go to the gym, so they don’t lose their routine. They won’t be doing their normal programme, but they’ll be getting rehabilitated in a fun and engaging way.”

Dr Van De Keere explains that with virtual reality games, patients become motivated to challenge themselves further than they would in a normal physio session.

“You can really mix up the way exercises are delivered,” she says. “And because patients are inside the virtual environment, they feel empowered. It takes them out of the white-walled, clinical environment and puts them somewhere new and interesting. It also gives them a sense of control over their surroundings.”

VR in the future
While Dr Van De Keere’s software is currently aimed at helping patients who have suffered from neurological trauma, such as stroke, traumatic brain injury and spinal cord injury, she has also worked with athletes including Paralympic rower David Smith, and says the potential for treating sports and exercise injuries is high.

“For athletes who are injured and can’t be out there playing their sport, it can be depressing. In VR they can be on a virtual football pitch, for example, doing their rehab exercises with a virtual ball. It strengthens their mental state and is more motivating than doing those exercises within the four white walls of a physio clinic.”

Unsurprisingly, Dr Van De Keere is also a big believer in VR as a tool to get people more active.

“The headsets will become more comfortable and will be more like normal glasses at some point. It will take some time but it’ll happen,” she says.

“Then we’ll be able to have people on the exercise bike or the treadmill who are immersed in an environment, like the mountains. Looking at a TV screen that’s showing a forest won’t make you feel like you’re there. But VR can.”

VR can transport patients from the white walls of the clinic to somewhere more interesting
VR can transport patients from the white walls of the clinic to somewhere more interesting
http://www.leisureopportunities.com/images/439283_120006.jpg
"If there was a physio clinic in the gym, with VR equipment, patients might be more motivated to do their exercises" – Dr Van De Keere of Immersive Rehab discusses the benefits of VR in gyms...
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features

People: Isabel Van De Keere, Immersive Rehab

CEO and founder, Immersive Rehab

Published in Health Club Management 2017 issue 9
DR Isabel Van De Keere
DR Isabel Van De Keere
If there was a physio clinic in the gym, with VR equipment, patients might be more motivated to do their exercises

Immersive’ is the buzzword in fitness at the moment, as gyms and suppliers strive to find new ways to make people forget they’re exercising. Now, healthtech entrepreneur Dr Isabel Van De Keere is applying the same principle to the area of rehabilitation.

Last year the former medical technology consultant founded Immersive Rehab – a startup that creates virtual reality (VR) games designed to increase the effectiveness of physical rehabilitation after injury.

“Traditional physiotherapy is quite boring for the patient,” says Dr Van De Keere. “People get demotivated and frustrated.”

On the gym floor
This is particularly true for injured gym-goers. Many are non-compliant with the physiotherapist-prescribed exercises they need to do to get back into action – further delaying their recovery. But Dr Van De Keere believes that the introduction of VR machines in gyms could change this.

“When physios give patients an exercise to do at home, most people don’t do it. But if there was a physio clinic in the gym, with VR equipment, people might be more motivated to do their prescribed exercises there. That way they can still go to the gym, so they don’t lose their routine. They won’t be doing their normal programme, but they’ll be getting rehabilitated in a fun and engaging way.”

Dr Van De Keere explains that with virtual reality games, patients become motivated to challenge themselves further than they would in a normal physio session.

“You can really mix up the way exercises are delivered,” she says. “And because patients are inside the virtual environment, they feel empowered. It takes them out of the white-walled, clinical environment and puts them somewhere new and interesting. It also gives them a sense of control over their surroundings.”

VR in the future
While Dr Van De Keere’s software is currently aimed at helping patients who have suffered from neurological trauma, such as stroke, traumatic brain injury and spinal cord injury, she has also worked with athletes including Paralympic rower David Smith, and says the potential for treating sports and exercise injuries is high.

“For athletes who are injured and can’t be out there playing their sport, it can be depressing. In VR they can be on a virtual football pitch, for example, doing their rehab exercises with a virtual ball. It strengthens their mental state and is more motivating than doing those exercises within the four white walls of a physio clinic.”

Unsurprisingly, Dr Van De Keere is also a big believer in VR as a tool to get people more active.

“The headsets will become more comfortable and will be more like normal glasses at some point. It will take some time but it’ll happen,” she says.

“Then we’ll be able to have people on the exercise bike or the treadmill who are immersed in an environment, like the mountains. Looking at a TV screen that’s showing a forest won’t make you feel like you’re there. But VR can.”

VR can transport patients from the white walls of the clinic to somewhere more interesting
VR can transport patients from the white walls of the clinic to somewhere more interesting
http://www.leisureopportunities.com/images/439283_120006.jpg
"If there was a physio clinic in the gym, with VR equipment, patients might be more motivated to do their exercises" – Dr Van De Keere of Immersive Rehab discusses the benefits of VR in gyms...
Latest News
The Gym Group has confirmed plans to roll out a new small box format in ...
Latest News
Representatives from the three main political parties have backed the view that physical activity has ...
Latest News
Life Leisure is expanding its facility portfolio with the launch of an independent boutique fitness ...
Latest News
Almost half of children and young people (46.8 per cent) in England are doing the ...
Latest News
A local fitness operator with 11 clubs in Chicago, US, is looking to muscle in ...
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Fitness industry veteran Nick Coutts has been appointed chair of Danish fitness tech firm Motosumo. ...
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Featured supplier: GLL chooses Ethitec’s Tiara9 system for its exercise-based public health referral schemes
The Tiara9 system has been selected by leisure trust, GLL, to support the nationwide rollout of its Healthwise GP referral programme.
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: CIMSPA Youth Panel to give real insight into Gen Z at active-net 2020
It’s just months away until active-net 2020, the two-day educational, networking and business meetings event, which attracts professionals from across the leisure sector.
Company profiles
Company profile: TRX Training UK
TRX provides world-class functional training by offering quality equipment, effective workouts and world-class education capable ...
Company profiles
Company profile: Focus Training
Focus Training is a leading provider of Active IQ and YMCA Awards certified Personal Trainer ...
Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
Directory
Management software
GymSales: Management software
Audio visual
Hutchison Technologies: Audio visual
Lockers/interior design
Fitlockers: Lockers/interior design
Skincare
Comfort Zone - Davines S.p.A: Skincare
Whole body cryotherapy
Zimmer MedizinSysteme GmbH / icelab: Whole body cryotherapy
Spa software
ResortSuite: Spa software
Locking solutions
Ojmar: Locking solutions
Exercise equipment
Star Trac / Core Health & Fitness: Exercise equipment
Professional services
Deloitte UK: Professional services
Flooring
Total Vibration Solutions / TVS Sports Surfaces: Flooring
Property & Tenders
Diary dates
10-12 Dec 2019
tbc, Fort Lauderdale, United States
Diary dates
21-23 Jan 2020
Harrogate Convention Centre, Harrogate, United Kingdom
Diary dates
28-30 Jan 2020
Ericsson Exhibition Hall, Ricoh Arena, Coventry, United Kingdom
Diary dates
29-30 Jan 2020
Holiday Inn San Francisco-Golden Gateway, San Francisco, United States
Diary dates
23-25 Mar 2020
Hilton, Barcelona, Spain
Diary dates
25-26 Mar 2020
Eastwood Hall, Nottingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
04 Jun 2020
Marriott Forest of Arden Hotel & Country Club, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
10-27 Jun 2020
tbc, Pinggu, China
Diary dates
13 Jun 2020
Worldwide, Various,
Diary dates
17-18 Jun 2020
ExCeL London, London, United Kingdom
Diary dates
21-24 Sep 2020
Loews Coronado Bay Resort, Coronado, United States
Diary dates
30-31 Oct 2020
NEC, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
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Zimmer MedizinSysteme GmbH / icelab
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