ReVive: Rehabilitation Via Immersive Virtual Environment


The aim of this research project is to develop virtual reality software for eventual use during rehabilitation after a spinal cord injury. 


A user-centred design was used to develop and test the feasibility of an immersive 3D virtual reality wheelchair training tool for people with spinal cord injury (SCI).


The Oculus Rift Wheelchair Training System has the potential to provide a virtual rehabilitation setting which could allow wheelchair users to learn valuable community wheelchair use in a safe environment. 

Nausea appears to be a side effect of the system, which will need to be resolved before this can be a viable clinical tool.


Key contact 

Jo Nunnerley, Burwood Academy of Independent Living

Phone: 03 383 6871
Fax: 03 383 7500
Mobile: 021 2872 651
Email:Dr Jo Nunnerley

Other researchers and collaborators 

Debbie Snell, Burwood Academy of Assisted Living 
Marcus King, Callaghan Innovation
Dr Swati Gupta, Callaghan Innovation
Ally Calder, University of Otago, Christchurch
Final Year Physiotherapy Students, University of Otago

Phase 2: Testing a habituation protocol

From left to right: Shane, Debbie, Marcus, Anita, Logan, Gemma, Ally.
In front: Ed, Hannah and Swati

Stickmen Media have also been involved in this project.

Visit the Stickmen Media website



Following is a video of a presentation on the results of Phase 2

Video link

Following is a video of a presentation on the project and the results of Phase 1

Video link 


Article: Training wheelchair navigation in immersive virtual environments for patients with spinal cord injury – end-user input to design an effective system.

Access the article on the Taylor & Francis Online database

Status of the research 

Phase 1 is complete.

Phase 2 underway.

Related information

News article - MTech-offers-more-than-games-for-spinal-rehab (September 22, 2017)

News article - Stickmen Media powering wheelchairs in virtual reality (June 13, 2015)