A Study of Human Balance and Coordination Using a Head Mounted Display

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This paper investigates the hypothesis that men and women perform differently in virtual environments in terms of balance and coordination during surprise events. It reports on an experiment in human subject balance and coordination using an HTC Vive headmounted display (HMD) to create a virtual environment. For the experiment, 30 male and 30 female subjects of college age were asked to navigate along a clear path in a virtual world using a controller with their dominant hand and asked to balance a virtual ball on a virtual plate using the other controller in the nondominant hand. The test subjects moved along a clearly marked path, with three surprise obstacles occurring: a large rock landing near the path, an explosion near the path, and a flock of birds coming across the path. Data included six degrees-of-freedom (DOF) trajectories for the head and both hands, as well as data gathered by the computer system on ball location and velocity, plate location and velocity, and ball status. Likert scale questionnaires were answered by the test subjects relative to video game experience, sense of presence, and ease of managing the ball movement. Statistics showed that the male students dropped the ball less frequently at p=0.0254 and p=0.0036. In contrast, female students were aware of their performance with correlation levels of 0.632 and 0.588.


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J. Comput. Inf. Sci. Eng,