Apps for Health and Wellbeing: Physical Exercise, Breathing, Mindfulness
O’Reilly Institute, LCR, Trinity College Dublin, 12:00 August 24th.
Human-Computer Interaction Lab, University of Udine, Italy
Different activities that can be potentially embraced by almost any person such as physical exercise, deep and slow breathing or relaxation training have been shown to have beneficial effects on health and wellbeing. Mindfulness practice allows people to gain further advantages (e.g., in terms of psychological health, social relationships, and performance at various tasks) and has become the subject of a large amount of health research, with literally thousands of journal papers published. Nevertheless, people have difficulty in learning and/or in regularly engaging in such activities, no matter how beneficial they could be to them. For these reasons, our projects explore how to use computers (and especially mobile devices) to make these activities simpler to approach and more appealing, supporting people in engaging with and practicing them. This talk will present our main project, focusing on different applications we developed for respectively physical exercise, breathing training, relaxation training and mindfulness. For each application, I will also summarize the main findings of the studies we carried out to assess the effectiveness of the apps.