Abstract

This paper describes evaluation experiments for visual and auditory feedback in a virtual obstacle walking scenario. Two studies with healthy subjects were carried out using the actuated gait orthosis Lokomat. Controlled factors for the visual feedback experiment were three different perspectives and 2D/3D vision. In the auditory feedback experiment, controlled factors were rhythmic distance feedback and gradual foot clearance feedback. For the visual and auditory feedback experiments, outcome was assessed with task-specific performance parameters and questionnaires. Results for visual feedback indicate that the chosen side perspective is superior to behind and ego perspectives. It is also shown that 3D vision does not reduce the number of obstacle hits compared to 2D vision. Furthermore, it is demonstrated that adding continuous auditory feedback made subjects walk faster compared to the exclusive use of visual feedback. Subjects rated auditory distance feedback as more helpful than auditory foot clearance feedback. Therefore, we suggest using side perspective and auditory feedback on obstacle distance.

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