Skills Acquisition

In sport, a person’s muscle pattern is tuned faster with training. A certain ‘muscle memory’ develops in response to the required task. We have developed an idea that allows us to motivate a person’s muscles to reach the desired muscles reaction. Our solution is delivered through robot-like muscle vibrators – a completely autonomous system – with net-vibrators to reach the final goal, to give the muscles direct stimulation.

Athlete training is a vital component of a successful sports career. Athletes spend long periods of time trying to perfect the right posture, strength and muscle application for performing and perfecting simple actions.

However, not all athletes get the right required performance and skills. Intensive training and wrong muscle use may lead to injuries, muscle fatigue and prevent them from learning the skills needed. What if there was another way to train your muscles? 

Is it possible to change how the brain controls and uses one’s muscles? Can we train a person in less time with less risk of injuries? 

Through neuro-feedback from the brain and Electromyography (EMG) signals, we can see that a person’s muscle patterns can be changed and trained to perform better through direct instructions to the relevant muscle groups. 

Our project utilises AI and advanced robotic technology for enhancing our skills acquisition capability.

Advanced technology now allows us to get a closer look to the brain and its neural connections with the muscles to reveal some hidden secrets. It is clear that different people use different muscle patterns in performing a task. It is also clear that professional people with higher skill levels have a better way in using their muscles. 

We noticed that giving a subject direct instruction to perform a task leads the subject to focus on particular muscles and activate them. This results in increasing muscle activity pattern or a change in muscle pattern depending on the instruction given. Our experimentation has shown that when giving the subject direct stimulated instructions results in greater improvement than when giving instructions by voice only.

The EMG electrodes read the muscle activity of the task performed. Recording and reading the muscle activity provides a scale of the signals to check how active each muscle is. The next step is studying the differences between the targeted muscle to approach and the muscles that should be trained.

To help in build a good, fully-trained muscle the robot-like vibrators are used to control and enhance the muscle activity by training over a short period of time. Vibrators help motivate a specific muscle to activate at the required time. Although, our prototype has been targeted to skill acquisition, we believe a wider application of such approach is possible in the field of rehabilitation.