For the project we were asked to develop a game to help with the rehabilitation of an Olympic BMX cyclist. We focused on developing a game that was rooted in the methodology of HIIT (High intensity interval training) which provided short races where the player could push themselves. The game takes the form of a simple BMX race against an opponent, with the player peddling on a static cycling machine to move their character along the track. As the athlete had limited movement in one arm, traditional controls would have been difficult for them to use, so for accessibility the steering was controlled by the game.
We wanted to test not only the speed racing requires, but also the precision. We implemented this through both a jump mini-game, where the speed of player controls a bar and they are asked to change their speed to match a target, and corner mini-game where the player will go wide on corners if their speed is too high. Through this game the athlete could train their stamina and precision in an engaging manner to help motivate their rehabilitation and get them back on the racetrack.
Epilogue: We were asked to build a BMX rehabilitation game for Kai Sakakibara, Australia’s #1 ranked BMX athlete. Kai is currently going through a rehabilitation program in Liverpool Hospital after an injury that he suffered during Olympic qualifiers. You can learn more about Kai’s remarkable story here. The objective of the game is to motivate Kai to push his physical limits during interval training on a gym bike. Three teams of students worked on this project and Kai was judging their progress and selected the winner presented here.