Acceptability, feasibility, and effectiveness of immersive virtual technologies to promote exercise in older adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Review written by Dr Xiaoqi Chen info

Key Points

  1. Virtual reality is well accepted and enjoyable for older people, this study shows its feasibility for use in this population as few adverse symptoms were reported.
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BACKGROUND & OBJECTIVE

Recent technological advancements, such as virtual and augmented reality (VR and AR) show promise in addressing the challenges of rehabilitating older adults. Immersive VR relies on head-mounted displays or cave automatic virtual environments (CAVEs) to create a sense of immersion. It is distinct from mixed reality systems like augmented reality (AR), which blend real-world elements with the virtual environment (1). In this review, both VR and AR were considered as immersive technologies.

At present, the evidence regarding the feasibility, acceptability, and effectiveness of virtual technologies to promote exercise in older adults is unknown. Thus, the aim of this review was to conduct a systematic review and meta-analysis of the available research to evaluate the effectiveness of VR and AR in older people.

Recent technological advancements, such as virtual and augmented reality show promise in addressing the challenges of rehabilitating older adults.
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Studies have demonstrated virtual reality’s positive impact on balance, fall risk reduction, and gait patterns highlighting its potential clinical significance.

METHODS

  • The authors conducted a comprehensive search across four databases (MEDLINE, CINAHL, Embase, and Scopus).
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