VIRTUAL GYM is an exercise platform for health practitioners to provide game-like exercise for older adults, with individualized configurations to match the user’s capabilities.

The platform was created within the University of Alberta and the AGE-WELL network.


Provide an intuitive platform for health practitioners, the editing capability supports their expertise in guiding older adults in a personalized exercise session. 

Older adults are codesigners of the gameplay catalogue, which prioritizes the importance of personalized activities.


This game requires the player to use both hands to reach pairs of bubbles in a series of stretches. To reach the bubbles, the player must stretch up, down, and to the side. This game assists the user to assume the correct posture as they play, encouraging them to exercise. This is the simplest game because the player doesn’t need to learn complex interactions.


This game introduces a different interaction for the left and right hands. The player can use their left hand to pop balloons and their right hand to push balloons around. Unlike in the bubble game, the player has to touch the balloons with both hands at the same time.


In this game, the user reaches and stretches in a step climbing environment. Participants attempt to climb a mountain using the controllers to reach climbing rocks and advance at a proper rhythm to grasp the next climbing rock with coordinated hands to reach the top. The placement of the rocks and the climbing speed are calculated based on the exercise description.

Flying Rings

This is an exercise for extension using the upper limbs. Following the rings and flying around the environment encouraging users to move and hold the arms in the air.


This game requires the player to make a sequence of coordinated movements to hold the bow and arrow. The movements in this game coordinate the hands together to grab the bow and arrow, then extend one hand to point the target. The target appears in front of the player and gradually moves up and further away from them. The Archery game places the targets at the proper length and elevation based on the posture information.

Slice Saber

In this game, the users grab two distinctly coloured lightsabers, one in each hand, while coloured blocks appear on the horizon. The players must cut the blocks in half, following the direction indicated on the block. Several two-colour blocks are placed in front of the users with a sufficient distance to coordinate their movements. The position of the targets stimulates the users to adopt the postures when they slice the cubes with the correct direction and hand. This game supports an additional cognitive challenge when the lightsaber switches colours. The personal configuration of the gameplay sets the position, orientation, texture, and speed of the cubes. Each exercise session has an individual setting to promote physical and cognitive activation with rhythm and coordination.


Victor Fernández

Postdoctoral Fellow
Computing Science
University of Alberta

Eleni Stroulia

Computing Science
University of Alberta

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