Frail elderly often have to endure an arduous rehabilitation process after hip surgery. To support this process towards regaining functionality, we have developed the application ZELFIE. ZELFIE was specifically aimed at training functional activities, and at promoting self-reliance through providing audio triggers, and recording personal user feedback.

The main challenge is to align this game application to the specific needs and capacities of vulnerable elderly, offering  optimal support during their rehabilitation process at home. To accomplish this, we make sure that the use of technology stimulates the frail elderly in question. We aim to motivate movement and mobility in a playful way.

In a multidisciplinary approach, we combine geriatric expertise, knowledge in the field of exercise, applied games, design and industrial design. Along with frail elderly and physiotherapists we develop innovative game application ZELFIE. In this project exergaming principles were applied to the group of frail elderly. ZELFIE focused on functional movement and playfully challenges elderly to move. ZELFIE can be used in the home situation, but can also play a role in a nursing / rehabilitation institution.

What was the role of the Creative Care Lab?
In this project we presented the first results of the impact that the game has on the amount of daily activity.

Since existing game applications for frail elderly are not currently adapted to the functioning of the elderly, disseminating the results of this project are important. In this context, we also provide a summary of gaming principles that are suitable for frail elderly. Furthermore we describe design guidelines that encourage making a connection with the needs of vulnerable older people. In this project, the actual needs and ambitions of the elderly we work with are key in the the creation of the application.

Project duration

31 Mar 2016 - 30 Mar 2018



  • Fonds NutsOhra - FNO


  • UMCG
  • MC Slotervaart