Exercise Connection has been developing exercise programs to meet the very specific challenges of the autism and special needs community for last 10 years. Families impacted with autism, down syndrome and other physical and cognitive disabilities are continuously trying to improve their child’s life through diet, cognitive and other behavioral and motor therapies. While all of these strategies are vital during early childhood, parents are often too overwhelmed and don’t consider the future needs of their child. Through the Exercise Connection’s (EC) use of structure, visual supports and workshops the EC has created a program that is filling the gap.
Exercise Connection wanted to enable families and instructors to use exercise programs that meet the very specific challenges of the autism and special needs community through the use of technology.
Exercise Connection has developed exercise programs with different exercise components that can change lives of people with autism, down syndrome and other physical and cognitive disabilities. However, they had limited physical reach to their audience.
The client wanted to solve this problem so that more and more people can benefit from it. They had thought of digitizing their exercise programs but they needed a solution to be quite interactive and engaging so that people can use it effortlessly on handheld devices
Digicorp developed an end-to-end solution that consists of the backend system, iPad Application, and API that connects backend and iPad Applications.
UI/UX was the biggest challenge because it was catered for families impacted by autism. Digicorp team had series of conversation with the client to understand the special needs of the community. After series of conversations, we conceived a workflow and created wireframes for the applications. Putting them in interactive design was another challenge, but the team came up with the beautiful and remarkable design with each of the design elements telling a story.
Primary users of the iPad application were instructors and families who can guide their children or groups with various workouts. The application was designed such that instructors can associate children and groups under their profile. A backend system was also developed for managing users, groups, categories, exercises and workout by coach.
A tool was designed to educate children with different parts of the body with appropriate figures based on various ethnicities. Repository of different exercises provided with postures and its relevant shapes of objects (e.g. Butterfly, Airplane) and illustrative videos that help instructors educate children with ease.
The workout program was designed with three different types of workouts called First-Then, Start-Finish, and Circuits. These programs were included in the app with audio and visual indications which helps instructors make their sessions more effective. To measure the overall growth and to keep health history, we provided a module to keep track of child’s weight, height, waist, and hips with required indications on the figure. Help contents were made available in the application to guide users.
An important feature of the iPad application is to make it work flawlessly without the internet connection. The app would sync all the activities recorded once the connection is available. Manual and auto synchronize features were developed for this.
- Digitization of workout programs that are now in reach of autism community in form of app.
- Exercise Buddy is an iPad-based visual exercise system, which solves the difficult problem of introducing exercise to individuals with autism.
- Parents and instructors can now see their child’s growth progress in real-time with the handheld device.
- Officials at Western Illinois University are using Exercise Buddy in their clinics to improve the lives of kids who struggle with motor skills.
In future, Exercise Connection intends to make enterprise level solutions to deliver the solution to schools and other organizations. The inclusion of in-app or external analytics solution is a potential add-on to make progress more visible for parents and instructors.
- Consulting and Business Strategy
- UI and UX design
- iPad Application
- API development