Minneapolis’ WellnessVR by Visual, Inc. is bringing positivity and compassionate VR experiences to the elderly living in senior communities and activity programs. Virtual reality has rapidly become a legitimate life tool that doesn’t discriminate against age or ability. Rather, it is accepted by forward thinkers of all ages and is helpful to those who use it for building fitness and maintaining mental health.
Source Of Wellness
WellnessVR’s mobile VR experience platform is designed to be portable with mobile VR, easily accessible, and promotes positivity and a reduction in anxiety for the people using it. WellnessVR has positive guided meditations, beautiful nature scenes, and mind-expanding learning and performance experiences. Seniors who are immobile, sick, or disabled now have a choice if they want to travel to places like a beach in New Zealand, aquarium, or watch a concert in VR instead of being resolved to not doing so.
StarTribune reports that 25 seniors at Ebenezer Care Center in Minneapolis took part in the program where they used the mobile VR platform twice a week, for 7 to 11-minute sessions across one month. The modest but revealing trial showed “at least 97 percent of users reporting feeling at least somewhat more relaxed and more positive after using VR,” which is a beacon of hope for anxious, depressed or ailing seniors. Participants like Gae Jensen shared that the program left her feeling “a sense of contentment” after seeing, hearing, and interacting with the WellnessVR experiences and then sharing that experience with others.
The article went on to explain the outcomes that VR had on the senior’s relationships inside and outside of the senior community. “Nearly 95 percent of participants reported that after using VR, they felt better while spending time with family and friends, vs. 65 percent who reported the same effect without VR exposure.” WellnessVR had a clear impact on the seniors, improving their quality of life and uplifted them emotionally with just 2 sessions per week.
We’ve reported that seniors and people with disabilities can see their health and overall sense of well-being improve by using VR. Playing cardio, strength, and thinking games where there’s an option to sit or stand can keep seniors fit and in an upbeat frame of mind. Seniors who used WellnessVR were reported to have improvements in their focus, moods, and had increased levels of awareness. Keeping the mind active made participants more flexible thinkers and feelers, with seniors saying that these calming and invigorating 360-videos made them feel less stressed overall and that they felt more compassion and happiness for themselves and the people around them.
Us young folks are each growing in our own ways, so what about the seniors of the world? Do we stop growing, exploring and learning when we grow older? Nope. Not by a long shot. Seniors may be our elders but they still want to have fun and live life. WellnessVR gives seniors who don’t have the funds or physical ability to travel around the world an opportunity to ditch the cost of buying plane tickets, the hassle of having to wait in line, and the pain of sitting through long flights.
People who are ill or just can’t get around like they used to are now able to put on a VR headset and watch the Prairie Fire Lady Choir, go to the Newborn Foundation in China, and even participate in activism. One of the participants, Sol Sepulveda, described the VR beach experience excitedly, “I didn’t have to buy a plane ticket. I was there,” showing how realistic 360-videos can really transport people to faraway places they’ve never been before or return to places they hadn’t been to in a while.
Feel Good VR
With seniors becoming more accepting of rapid changes in technology, VR is now a gateway that can bring the world to them anywhere they are. WellnessVR isn’t available for purchase in app stores or online, but can be used for senior-focused living communities and businesses by contacting Visual, Inc.
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