Student Choice Presentation - Virtual Reality fitness using BoxVR

Introduction - What is BoxVR

Humans are always cautious about their health and love to train to keep themsleves fit. But there are many aspects which prevents them from hitting the gym. Commute and atmosphere is one major aspect because some facilities arent the most desirable place to workout. There may be only a few machines that the same sweaty person constantly takes up. Or perhaps the commute is too far from home. The thought of driving to the gym and back seems daunting in our busy lives and is easy to skip after a while. This can leave us with no other choice but staying put where we are. The other aspect is the repetitive exercises which people do for longer periods of time. The treadmill and other machines offer great workouts, but walking or pedaling to nowhere stimulates boredom so easily. BoxVR was developed by FitXR to replace the traditional gym experience through Virutal Reality, combining the physical and virtual worlds to keep members motivated and to make their workouts go faster. BoxVR brings high intensity boxing workouts to virtual reality with lively graphics and motivating music. They combine the enjoyment of gaming with the intensity of a personal training session, all in the comfort of your own home. All you have to do is wear the VR headset and play the game. It gamifies exercise making it more like a futuristic sport rather than a video game. All the exercises are accessible and engaging for everyone, regardless of age or ability. The dynamic environment provides a new satisfiable experience everyday to the user and each workout is updated every three months, with new moves and a new music playlist, keeping it fresh. Lets take a look at other aspects of BoxVR in the sections below.

Features of BoxVR

There are 4 selectable environments, two featuring generic balloons to punch, the others skulls (cemetery theme) and Christmas ornaments (winter theme). BOXVR features jabs, crosses, hooks (high and low) and uppercuts and likewise blocking, ducks and slips (right and left) on the defense side.
Users can, for instance, work out to save a city or find treasure and feel the resistance of virtual objects in the physical world while using their body as the controller.
The real strength-building resistance is delivered using an integrated cable pulley system which is controlled by the Black Box virtual reality engine.
The games help players improve their strength, speed and endurance and players performance is rewarded immediately in the virtual world.
Each training session automatically helps members reach their fitness goals. The platform tracks performance data and uses it to refine the speed, resistance and intensity based on the users' goals and progress.
Only three 30-minute workout sessions a week will deliver results, increasing members' strength and endurance and shaping their body in the process.
The system includes machine learning modules, allowing users to get maximized fitness results from their workouts and reduce the risk of injury.
Each minute of the workout session is optimized through artificial intelligence and adaptive workout prescription.
Black Box VR gyms will include multiple rooms with the latest VR fitness equipment, including treadmills, spin bikes and other cardio machines.
Room-scale group classes will also be part of the experience.

System Requirements and Other specifications

Play Area : Standing, Room-scale
Supported Headset: VIVE, VIVE Pro, Oculus Rift
Supported tracking modes: 360, Front-facing
Input Method: VIVE Controllers
OS: Windows 10
Processor: Intel Core i5-4590 or AMD FX 8350, equivalent or better
Memory: 4 GB RAM
Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 or AMD Radeon RX 480, equivalent or better
Storage: 2 GB available space
Game Modes: Single User
Developer: FitXR
Publisher: FitXR
Founders: Sam Cole and Sameer Baroova

Advantages of BoxVR

Dynamic Resistance - BoxVR was specifically designed to deliver real dynamic resistance in a virtual environment and it successfully implements the same with ease. The dynamic resistance machine is mapped in the virtual environment so when you reach out to grab a virtual handle, you are actually grabbing the handle in the real world.
Affordable Price - The game is currently available for Oculus Rift and HTC Vive at a price of $19.99.
User specific environments - Users need to enter their height, weight and other specifications to determine how their training experience should feel.
Music - There is also some pretty solid well-timed music playing in the background. The music also plays a role in the way we approach objects to hit. Users can also upload their own music.
Time dilation - The best thing about BoxVR is its ability to take advantage of full immersion and make workouts feel very short. For eg. a 20 minute run can feel like 8 minutes or less.
Pauses between workouts - There are intentionally planned rest periods, which is important for a high intensity training workout.
Modes - There are several modes, including the default workout one namely beginner, power and speed workouts, also train (endless, set to music of your choosing) and survival (increasing speed and complexity with limited misses allowed).
No way to cheat - The game requires proper stance, punch extension and hip turns or you will miss targets and reduce score totals. So there is no scope for cheating.

Drawbacks of BoxVR

Graphics - As far as the graphics is concerned, the game was pretty basic but the mediocre graphics did not alter the user experience.
Color - Sometimes its very difficult to figure out the subtle tint of the sphere color because the user has to just hit it with the correct hand.
Jumping - User has to jump in order to cross the logs. The jumps should be removed from the experience to avoid motion sickness and headset discomfort.
Balance - Finding the balance after jumping/moving was probably the hardest thing because the headset display wobbles and its hard to keep your bearings.
Multi User - Currently, the game is available only for a single user. But in the future, there is a scope of development to make the game more competitive and therefore social and fun. Users can actually train along with their friends in the Virtual environment. Environments - The number of currently available environments are very limited (4).
Sweat - Because of the higly intense workouts sweat accumulates across the headset, which makes it difficult for other people to use it continuously.

Reviews

User Reviews
"Best VR Fitness Game of the Year" - VR Fitness Insider
"A game for everyone that wants to get ripped" - Discovery Channel
"BOXVR, my friends, is the one boxing VR experience to score a stunning TKO" - Impulse Gamer
"For 50 days I played 4 Vive games over an hour (9 min: Audioshield, 20 min: Thrill of the Fight, 20 min: Holopoint, 10 min: Holoball per day) and the result was a weight loss of 14.4 lbs" - Tim Donahey
"Combining VR with fitness is such a unique concept. It is totally immersive, dynamic and fun. At times you do not even feel like it is a workout which is such a bonus!" - Mary Melrose
"Great workout. I have been playing this for several months now and have lost 34 pounds! If you are looking to lose some weight buy this. Much more fun than jogging" - Gokuhawks

Critical Reviews
"BOXVR is a great boxing experience for the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. It's not the prettiest game but the mechanics just work extremely well. Definitely worth picking up if you have $20 to spare." - Marat Arguinbaev
"Other than some minor shortcomings, I really enjoyed the game. It was fun, didnt feel like a workout, and it was gratifying once I got into a rhythm with the punches, dodges and squats. For those that are looking to simply get started on their path to accomplishing their health and fitness goals, I would definitely recommend Box VR as a solid first start." - Preston Lewis
"BOXVR is an amazing workout that beginners and experienced fitness boxers need to check out. While simple in its presentation and execution, it packs a fantastic exercise experience." - Paul Sturt
"Overall, BoxVR offers an intense, simple fitness session that will definitely have me coming back for more. However, I think that the offering is a bit scarce for the current price point, since it only offers about twelve workouts that are all mostly the same except for the intensity and pace of the workout. On the other hand, its much cheaper than a gym membership and much more convenient to boot." - Arline Groenewald
"I love this fitness app! I use it every day if I can and I think its only getting better! All the other VR programmes I bought, are now gathering virtual dust!" - Matster



Future of BoxVR

Given the number of positive responses, BoxVR is undoubtedly the next big thing in the Virtual Reality fitness world and it is expected to do even more better in the coming years. Below are the list of significant features that are expected to be a part of BoxVR in the near future.
User profiles - In Progress
Heart rate integration - In progress
Harder workouts - In progress
Music streaming integration - In progress
More music formats - In progress
Warm up - In progress
360 room recentering - In progress
User generated content - In discussion
Multidirectional cues - In discussion
Out of VR music analysis - In discussion
Vive Tracker integration - In discussion

Other Companies that are changing the gym experience

Holofit - Holofit machines use Vive headsets that have Holoworld games on them. These games will take you from an underwater ocean to outer space, depending on where you would like to get your workout in that day. These adventure based fitness games use the exercisers own energy and of course, fat stores to put power behind rows, and pedals and keeps them motivated to replay them for a higher score among competing players.
Icaros - The flying simulator is used with Vive, Oculus, and Gear VR headsets and comes with access to a multiplayer flight racing game called Icarace. The Icarace has flight worthy obstacles to weave and race around against players online. Pilots not only get to feel like they are playing video games, they also exercise their full body and work on their reflexes, strength, and balance at the same time. Icaros flight simulator and fitness machines have huge potential in the health, fitness, and physiotherapy fields due to the range of muscles that it targets and the difficulty settings that can be customized to each pilot.
VirZOOM - VirZOOM brings VR exercise bikes to gyms. VirZOOM is best known for their virtual reality games that make it fun for users to pedal and be rewarded for it with a high score or a better bod.
HoloSuit - HoloSuit tracks user's body movement, gather data, and provide haptic sensations to the wearer in VR. The 6-piece suit comes in the form of a jacket, gloves, pants, jersey, headband, and trackers for the foot and clavicle to track isolated areas or the full body. The wearable VR suit has body tracking support from 26 to 36 sensors and 9 haptic feedback sites that can be used in a range of activities in athletics, fitness training, and therapeutic settings. Getting data about which exercises are the best for your fitness level or whether you are performing an exercise correctly will change how gyms, fitness trainers, sports coaches, and athletes train and how physical therapists and doctors help their patients.
Beat Saber - Beat Saber is similar to BoxVR and is a music-driven, rhythm-heavy cube slicing game and extreme fat burning workout. The users are supposed to use a neon red and blue saber in each hand to hit music cubes in all directions as they go down a platform.
Sprint Vector - Sprint Vector is a multiplayer game wherein the user has to run, jump, climb, drift, and fly at extreme velocity as he/she races against 8 players and battle obstacles in this dynamic environment. Sprint Vector provides a fresh VR experience.



References

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ieC-jSwCfY0
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bRGRluMZUwM
https://youtu.be/JMk0JcpzeWw
https://fitxr.com
https://thevrsoldier.com/boxvr-review-the-best-vr-boxing-experience-to-date/
https://www.vrfitnessinsider.com/review/box-vr-game-review/
http://www.impulsegamer.com/boxvr-oculus-rift-review/
https://www.fitness-gaming.com/news/fitness-and-sports/black-box-vr-delivers-worlds-first-virtual-reality-gym-experience.html
https://www.vrfocus.com/2018/01/hands-on-with-black-box-vr-muscling-into-vr/
https://www.vrfitnessinsider.com/bill-loses-90-pounds-with-beat-saber-box-vr-weights-and-healthy-eating/