"Analysis of dual-sided Cycling Power in a Virtual Reality Game" by Michaela Niedermayer
A survey showed that in 2017, 34% of the interviewed Austrians are driving their bicycle several times per week, 30% several times per month and only 5% less than a number of times per year. As this statistic shows, the frequency of cycling in everyday life is relatively high. Therefore an even distribution of the right and left pedal force is important, as pedalling asymmetry can alter the cycling performance and can lead to premature fatigue and knee or muscle overuse injuries. A simulation program would be helpful to recognize and reduce such an imbalance.
The dual-sided cycling power Virtual Reality game provides the possibility to measure the leg power distribution of both legs and give visual feedback of it during a virtual reality game experience. With the visual feedback, the user can see his bilateral asymmetry and train to get a 50/50 ratio for the leg power. Power meters which are able to measure the pedal power distribution, like the Garmin Vector 3, are rather new. Therefore these measurements in applications, especially in Virtual Reality exercises, are rare or not existing at all. The main use case of the VR application was meant for patients with knee injuries or after knee surgery, as they can use the application in their rehabilitation to see how their pedal force on the injured leg changed and to retrieve an equal distribution with the help of the visual feedback. However, as due to COVID19 the application cannot be tested with patients in their physical rehab an advantage of the application is that it is also useful for professional and hobby cyclists as a user study by Bini et al. showed a strong relationship between bilateral asymmetries and performances. The application will be a serious game, which means the usage should further make fun.