Designing for Active Life: Moving and Being Moved Together with Dementia Patients
Helena Margareta Tobiasson, Yngve Sundblad, Åke Walldius, Anders Hedman


Life for older people with dementia tends to be inactive. This paper reports on two case studies in which exercise games (exergames) were introduced in dementia special care units with a focus on patients’ well-being. The first case used a participatory design (PD) approach to engage the patients as users in the process. The results highlight the patients’ enjoyment in playing these games in a socially encouraging environment. We have found that exergames in dementia care provide patients with the well-documented health benefits of physical activity and also result in social and cognitive benefits. The results indicate that the notions of games/competition, social interaction, physical activity and challenges are valuable ingredients when designing for the well-being of older people who suffer from moderate to severe dementia.

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