Date of Award

2014

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Electrical Engineering (MSEE)

First Advisor

Ying Sun

Abstract

Exercise is the key to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. However, it is becoming more of a challenge for people to break from their busy lives to take the time to do some physical activity. This is a problem that is experienced by all different age groups, for various different reasons. For younger people, it is difficult to find motivation to take time out of the day for exercise. For the elderly population, it is difficult to find the energy to exercise. One way to facilitate physical activity for people is to increase motivation to do so. This study is designed to test a specific device that specializes in personalized motivational messages, called the Activity Analyzer for Guided Independent Living Environments, or AAGILE for short. The AAGILE is an exercise monitoring device worn by a person throughout the day. At predetermined times, personalized, prerecorded messages play from the AAGILE to encourage exercise to the person wearing it. As the wearer exercises and creates motion, the AAGILE captures the motion data and applies a scoring scheme to the data. The scheme is on a scale from one to ten, with one being the lowest exercise score and ten being the highest exercise score. Then, at the end of the day, the user can export the data to a PC and inspect the exercise response to the messages throughout the day. For this study, the AAGILE was worn by ten subjects between the ages of 18 and 30 who are in good health. The device is worn for at least six hours, and monitors the subject’s activity during that period. Three messages are programmed to be played at preselected times unknown to the wearer. The three messages are personalized to the wearer. At the message play times, the personalized message is played which encourages exercise. At the end of the six hour period, the device is returned and the exercise score data is captured on a PC using the AAGILE Windows® application graphical user interface. These ten sets of score data are analyzed and presented. All ten subjects had a significant increase of exercise score data immediately after a personalized message was played. On average, scores increased by 3.5 points after a message was played. The increase in exercise demonstrates the overall effectiveness of the AAGILE, in terms of providing encouragement and motivation for the user to exercise, and thus, promote healthy lifestyles.

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