Title of Research Output

Yoga in Virtual Reality (VR)

Faculty

Faculty of Social Science

Supervisor Name

Dr. Paul Frewen

Keywords

Virtual reality, yoga, online, presence, satisfaction

Description

Virtual reality (VR) technology involves computer visualization of a simulated (virtual) environment (e.g., coral reef) presented using a head mounted display (HMD), typically together with accompanying audio (music, sounds, e.g., sea creatures, passing boat). The user may simply view the environment but typically interacts with it in some determined way, e.g., through selection of buttons or hand movements that mimic behaviors appropriate to the virtual environment (e.g., snorkeling in the reef). Research including our own previous studies have already shown that practicing guided meditations using a HMD is associated with positive affect as compared with non-VR meditation. Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic yoga studios were mandated to move their classes into virtual format. However, to our knowledge the application of immersive VR technology to yoga instruction has not yet been explored. This pilot study proposes to investigate the satisfaction and sense of presence experienced during the different online delivery of yoga instruction in 5 formats, specifically: 1) traditional in-person; 2) pre-recorded 360° videos viewed by HMD; 3) pre-recorded 360° videos viewed without HMD (i.e., on standard flatscreen such as laptop or smartphone); 4) live streamed 360° videos viewed with HMD; and 5) live streamed 360° videos viewed without HMD.

Acknowledgements

Thank you to my supervisor Dr. Frewen, Dr. Ellis, the USRI program and the rest of my lab members.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License

Document Type

Paper

Included in

Psychology Commons

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Yoga in Virtual Reality (VR)

Virtual reality (VR) technology involves computer visualization of a simulated (virtual) environment (e.g., coral reef) presented using a head mounted display (HMD), typically together with accompanying audio (music, sounds, e.g., sea creatures, passing boat). The user may simply view the environment but typically interacts with it in some determined way, e.g., through selection of buttons or hand movements that mimic behaviors appropriate to the virtual environment (e.g., snorkeling in the reef). Research including our own previous studies have already shown that practicing guided meditations using a HMD is associated with positive affect as compared with non-VR meditation. Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic yoga studios were mandated to move their classes into virtual format. However, to our knowledge the application of immersive VR technology to yoga instruction has not yet been explored. This pilot study proposes to investigate the satisfaction and sense of presence experienced during the different online delivery of yoga instruction in 5 formats, specifically: 1) traditional in-person; 2) pre-recorded 360° videos viewed by HMD; 3) pre-recorded 360° videos viewed without HMD (i.e., on standard flatscreen such as laptop or smartphone); 4) live streamed 360° videos viewed with HMD; and 5) live streamed 360° videos viewed without HMD.

 

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