Wii-enhanced CPR training gets American Heart Association blessing


UAB Engineering Students use the Wii for CPR from uabnews on Vimeo.

If you’ve ever been CPR certified, you know that it involves a lot of demonstration on a dummy that isn’t the best at giving feedback. But that’s the way it’s been done forever and it’s likely not going to change — although some undergrads at the University of Alabama at Birmingham are looking at a way to make the process a little more high-tech. They’ve designed a program, or “game” if you will, which integrates the Wiimote into the motions of the CPR training and lets you know if your compressions are deep enough, if you’re doing the right amount, etc. Sure, they could implement accelerometers and wireless data connections in the dummies, but we know that’s not going to happen.

It sounds kind of random, I know, but I think this is a good thing. My CPR training, while adequate, was less than stellar and more feedback and oversight would have been welcome. I’m not sure this Wii -PR will make it to the national stage or anything, but if it helps a few people learn a life-saving technique better than before, then it sounds like a winner to me.

It’ll be free and open source when it’s finished, though you will need a couple Wiimotes around to take advantage of it.