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Publication Detail
As light as your footsteps: altering walking sounds to change perceived body weight, emotional state and gait
  • Publication Type:
  • Authors:
    Tajadura Jimenez A, Basia M, Deroy O, Fairhurst M, Marquardt N, Bianchi-Berthouze N
  • Publisher:
    ACM Press
  • Publication date:
  • Published proceedings:
    Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems.
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  • Conference start date:
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  • Keywords:
    Movement, Body Perception, Arduino, Sensing Technology
An ever more sedentary lifestyle is a serious problem in our society today. Enhancing people’s exercise adherence through technology remains an important research challenge. We propose a novel approach for a system supporting walking activity that draws from basic findings in neu-roscience research. Our shoe-based prototype senses a per-son’s footsteps and alters in real-time the frequency spectra of the sound they produce while walking. The resulting sounds are consistent with those produced by either a light-er or heavier body. This approach alters the perception of one’s body by manipulating the self-produced walking sounds thereby enhancing self-efficacy, self-esteem and gait. A user study confirms that modified walking sounds change one’s own perceived body weight and enhance the motivation for physical activity, self-efficacy and gait pat-terns. We discuss our findings in terms of HCI applications and questions opened by this research.
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