|3||SpotMe! [Synchronized Piezoelectric and Optical Tracking feedback for Motion and Exercise]
|# SpotMe! [Synchronized Piezoelectric and Optical Tracking feedback for Motion and Exercise]
- Arjun Shamaraya (arjunms2)
- Jason Vaccarella (jasonav3)
- Pablo Sanchez Jr. (psanch22)
With COVID-19, many people lost access to gyms and rec centers, and the quarantine sedentary lifestyle has motivated people to try working out at home, bringing to life the phrase “move like no one is watching.” For beginners, some simple body-weight exercises can lead to injury if done incorrectly but can produce fantastic results if executed properly.
Not having anyone to critique and correct a person's form increases the likelihood of improper movements and thus injury, but also decreases the value of the motions themselves. Specifically, there are two main paths to injury: incorrect range of motion and incorrect alignment of the body. Furthermore, if we take a look at the body-weight lunge, incorrect range of motion does not activate the larger leg muscles, and not aligning the knee behind the toes increases the stress placed on the injury-prone knee joints.
There is a need for a device that can measure the range of motion and alignment of the body for body-weight exercises and provide feedback to the user to ensure proper execution of movements since this will minimize the chance of injury.
Our solution for this problem comes in the form of two main subsystems: a set of piezoelectric-based sleeves for the knees and elbows and a computer-vision-based software. The combination of these two systems will address the two big needs for this device, which are to measure the range of motion and to measure the alignment of the body.
This solution is unique from previous gym-related design projects in that we are not using free-weights or equipment of that nature, we are focusing on body-weight movements (most people don’t own free weights), and we are evaluating the user’s form from wearable technology, not devices placed on the equipment itself. It is also different from another mentioned computer vision application that implemented a personal trainer for routines, because we are providing real-time feedback and not counting reps or anything of that nature.
## Solution Components
## Subsystem 1 - Hardware Sleeves
The hardware component will include wearable sleeves for the knees primarily, since we will be focusing on the lunge, and the PCB will also be worn by the user. This subsystem will be responsible for measuring the range of motion of the knees, and within a viable range, provide haptic feedback to the user.
The sleeves themselves can be made from existing fabric sleeves for exercise, and they would be rigged with flex sensors, and then connected to the centerpiece PCB. These can be calibrated with other parts of the circuit via voltage dividers, to set the proper threshold for each user. The PCB can then send some pulse feedback signals to haptic actuators that will also be a part of the sleeves.
We are thinking of using common 4.5” flex sensors, and a pancake motor for the haptic feedback.
## Subsystem 2 - Computer Vision for Form Correction
The computer vision aspect of our project will be used to provide corrective instructions when the user's lunge form is detected to be incorrect. The following are the aspects of the lunge movement that would constitute incorrect form by the user:
Forward knee is not past toe when lowering to the ground
Rear knee is not touching the ground
Back is straight and upright
Hips are symmetrical
Feet are hip width apart
This subsystem will involve 3 USB cameras and a computer to do the processing for the computer vision. Two of the cameras will show either side of the user and the third camera will show the front view of the user. The computer will be used to not only do the computation needed for the computer vision but will also display to the user if they are doing something incorrectly.
# Criterion For Success
Describe high-level goals that your project needs to achieve to be effective. These goals need to be clearly testable and not subjective.
The main goal of this device is to accurately measure and provide real-time form correctness feedback to the user. We first plan to focus on only one movement - the lunge. If we can successfully report back to the user about what corrections he/she should make regarding the lunge form using vibrational and visual feedback from the sensors and cameras, we will have achieved our goal. The whole idea behind this device is to encourage those who are new to exercise from trying workouts on their own without the need for a personal trainer or additional spotter. If this design works, this form-correcting principle can be expanded to incorporate additional compound movements such as the squat or push-up.