Posted: 08/09/20

Dublin, 08 September 2020: It should come as no surprise that there is a movement-based crisis among today’s youth. Less availability of outdoor spaces for those living in apartment blocks coupled with safety concerns have led to children playing outside unsupervised with much lower frequency than in days past. Add to that the allure of online videos, addictive console games, the fact that 71% of children have increased their screentime during the COVID-19 lock down, and we have a generation of very sedentary children. 

ADAPT and DCU researchers Dr Jamie McGann and Prof Johann Issartel have come together to develop a technology that addresses this crisis by creating phone apps that have children use their bodies in order to progress in the game.The two caught up with Donal Scannell to dive into their motivations for their project called MoveAhead in this final episode of ADAPT Radio Series 2.

Children love playing and they love tech. MoveAhead is a system that will marry the two together and enable children to stay active, develop healthy habits early on, and improve their motor skills over time. The MoveAhead team is working with coaches specifically to develop a set of movements that would mimic movements often used in sports. . 

Jamie and Johann have both previously worked as school teachers and come at this issue with a passion for children and their well-being. As well as they think they may know young students, they are conscious that a product like this needs to be validated by children every step of the way to ensure it is created with the end users in mind.
 

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