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Tai Chi tools such as the ruler, ball and bang were typically taught to advanced students. They are of general benefit to almost all students, and are of particular benefit to students in the cerebral palsy and arthrogryposis spectra who suffer from what is described as a painful and progressive arthritis involving the fingers, hands, wrists and lower arms. So we moved the tools into the earliest sections of the curriculum. The typical configuration was biosensors for heart rate, blood pressure and temperature on one wrist (a smart watch that does not tell time) that sends data to a hub (a small computer that gets signals from multiple sensors). The only other sensors we had planned for along the arms were position sensors reporting x y z coordinates.

Then we got interested in the rather obscure tool known as the tai chi bar. This is (we think) exclusively for feet, specifically the soles of the feet. We were having some technical problems putting pressure sensors in chair seats and floor mats so we added some temperature sensors inside the shoes. It soon became clear that for some students there was chronic bottom of the foot pain that ranged from dull aches to sharp stabs.

Armsleeves

So we are going to experiment with embedding some temperature sensors in armsleeves (shown above some product from Suddora). We are less concerned with color than with feel for people with hypersensitivity. There may be an issue with length (only going to the elbow, for example) as well as well sensor placement. But that’s not all.

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