The potential of virtual reality and gaming to assist successful aging with disability

Belinda Lange, Philip Requejo, Sheryl Flynn, Albert Rizzo, Francisco Valero-Cuevas, Lucinda Baker, Carolee Winstein

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    147 Citations (Scopus)


    Using the advances in computing power, software and hardware technologies, virtual reality (VR), and gaming applications have the potential to address clinical challenges for a range of disabilities. VR-based games can potentially provide the ability to assess and augment cognitive and motor rehabilitation under a range of stimulus conditions that are not easily controllable and quantifiable in the real world. This article discusses an approach for maximizing function and participation for those aging with and into a disability by combining task-specific training with advances in VR and gaming technologies to enable positive behavioral modifications for independence in the home and community. There is potential for the use of VR and game applications for rehabilitating, maintaining, and enhancing those processes that are affected by aging with and into disability, particularly the need to attain a balance in the interplay between sensorimotor function and cognitive demands and to reap the benefits of task-specific training and regular physical activity and exercise.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)339-356
    Number of pages18
    JournalPhysical Medicine and Rehabilitation Clinics of North America
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - May 2010


    • Aging
    • Disability
    • Games
    • Rehabilitation
    • Technology
    • Virtual reality


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