Past Studies

All the studies on this page have concluded. If you are interested in participating in one of our studies, please look at our page of active studies.

FEATHERS Assessment Tool Sub-study: Using Motion-Control Games to Quantify Characteristics of Human Motion

For Healthy Adults, Young and Old


As part of FEATHERS Phase 3, the research team developed an automated assessment for the participants with hemiplegia to complete periodically throughout the course of the study. The “Assessment Tool” consists of a series of targets at different positions on the screen that the user needs to click on using the FEATHERS motion control system. The research team is looking at how healthy individuals perform when using this tool. The data collected from healthy participants will be used to study the effects of aging on these types of reaching motions. The healthy population will also be used as a control group to compare the hemiplegic population from FEATHERS Phase 3 to.


To take part in this sub-study as a healthy adult, you need to:

  • Be 19 years or older
  • Be able to speak and understand English

What is Involved

A 30-minute session using the FEATHERS system at the CARIS Lab on UBC Vancouver campus (located in ICICS building, room X015):

  • Complete the Assessment Tool using modified PlayStation Move controllers
  • Complete the Assessment Tool using Microsoft Kinect
  • Play a short Facebook game using Microsoft Kinect


If you would like to take part in this sub-study, please contact us!

(604) 352-8649


FEATHERS (Functional Engagement in Assisted Therapy Through Exercise Robotics)

Sony PlayStation controllers have been adapted by the research team to encourage computer game play using both hands together. These systems have been paired with Facebook games to offer a potentially motivating way for people with hemiplegia to do therapy in the comfort of their own home.

This phase of the study aims to test the effectiveness of a home-based therapy program using the system for bimanual therapy (using both hands together).


To take part in the study, you need to:

  • Be 13 years or older
  • Have one side of the body that is weaker than the other (hemiplegia or hemiparesis)
  • Be able to lift your arms against gravity at least some distance
  • Be able to move around on your own (with or without walking aides, or a manual or power wheelchair)
  • Be able to follow instructions in English
  • Not have had orthopedic surgery in the past 6 months
  • Not be receiving other therapies that target arm function, including any form of physical therapy or Botox injections

What is Involved

  • A 2-hour session in one of our collaborating community clinics (see below) for baseline assessments of function (assessing how much your motions are affected by your neurological injury), going over the treatment program and showing you how to use the gaming system
  • A short home visit the next week to set up the equipment and review the treatment program
  • 30 minutes, 5 times a week game-based therapy using the system for 2 months
  • A 90-minute clinic visit at 2 months to have your progress assessed
  • A 60-minute clinic visit at 4 months for follow-up assessments of function


If you would like to take part, or want to learn more about the study, please contact us!

Stephanie Glegg
Study Occupational Therapist & Research Assistant
(604) 453-8300 ext. 8268

The Investigators

Researchers from the University of British Columbia (UBC) and community partners are working together on this project.

UBC Researchers:

  • RREACH and CARIS Labs in the Department of Mechanical Engineering
  • Department of Physical Therapy
  • Department of Occupational Science & Occupational Therapy
  • School of Human Kinetics

Community Partners:

  • Sunny Hill Health Centre for Children (Vancouver)
  • Abilities Neurological Rehabilitation, Inc. (Coquitlam, Surrey, Abbotsford, Chilliwack)

Study Investigators:

  • Dr. Mike Van Der Loos
  • Dr. Nicola Hodges
  • Dr. Nasnin Virji-Babul
  • Dr. Lara Boyd
  • Dr. Elizabeth Croft
  • Alison Hoens, MSc

Sunny Hill Research Investigator:

  • Alec Black, MSc

Abilities Neurological Rehabilitation Investigator:

  • Heather Branscombe, PT, MBA