Institute of Sports and Sports Science (IfSS)

Digital IRENA

After having had treatment at a rehabilitation centre as the result of a health impairment, patients need to become independent again as quickly as possible and be able to continue with their employment. For these reasons, the German Pension Insurance provides the so-called IRENA model (= intensified post-rehabilitation care). Following the release from the rehabilitation centre, offered apppointments are expected to strengthen the treatment success of the therapy. Although this is not only free of charge for an insured person, but also important for the success of the treatment, statistics show that the offer is often not made use of, mainly because oft he lack of time and the location. Therefore, as an alternative to the classic IRENA, a digital rehabilitation platform was developed. This enables an insured person to carry out the exercises flexibly, regarding time and location, using a smartphone, tablet or computer.

So far, there have been little findings about digital rehabilitation platforms. Therefore, the Health Education and Sports Psychology Unit of the IfSS, in cooperation with the German Pension Insurance, Knappschaft-Bahn-See, is investigating the effectiveness as well as the social and motivational effects of such a digital platform. Within the project, the digital rehabilitation platform will be compared with the classic face-to-face IRENA as well as a control group regarding subjective health assessment as well as work ability. In addition, the extent to which the digital platform affects the motivational processes of patients will be examined.

Funded by: German Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs

Prevention study Borkum

The German Pension Insurance (DRV), with the help of preventive measures, aims to maintain and promote work ability for people with primary health impairments and/or occupational risk factors. Participants of the so-called Betsi programme (= ensuring employability through participation) are therefore expected to learn, during a short but intensive time period, certain techniques that promote good health on a long-term basis, and to abandon behaviours that have a long-term negative influence on good health. Following an initial phase in the prevention centre, there are a training phase and a self-initiative phase, both extra-occupational, in which the previously learned behavior patterns are to be strengthened. As an alternative to the standard Betsi program, a digital platform (CASPAR) has been developed, which enables an insured person to carry out the exercises flexibly regarding the time and place, using a smartphone, tablet or computer.

Since, to date, there have been few findings on digital platforms in prevention work, our work unit, in cooperation with the German Pension Insurance Knappschaft-Bahn-See, is investigating the effectiveness as well as the social and motivational effects of such a digital platform. Within the project, the digital prevention program will be compared with the standard Betsi regarding subjective health assessment as well as work ability. Furthermore, it will be examined to what extent the digital platform affects the motivational processes of patients, and whether the drop-out rates of the conventional offer and the digital measure differ.

Funded by: Knappschaft-Bahn-See

Mindfulness for competitive athletes - a digital application with 7Mind

In order to be successful in competitive sports, not only the physical but also the mental fitness is important. Even after long periods of stress, athletes must remain fully concentrated and act calmly despite the adversities of a competition. Mindfulness training has proven to be a very effective means of increasing concentration and the ability to regulate emotions (Jekauc & Kittler, 2015). However, learning the practices of mindfulness requires guidance and regular training, which is difficult to practically implement within competitive sports in courses with personal attendance. The increasing digitalization of our society has led to new solutions for conducting mindfulness training felxibly, regarding the time and location, and with guidance. Within the framework of this project, in cooperation with the company 7Mind, special forms of mindfulness training for athletes were developed in the form of an app.

Funded by: 7Mind