Seminar: Nordic Walking – How do you use your poles?

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Course description

Nordic Walking is a complex sport including interactions between upper and lower-body and body-sides. Nordic Walking provides many health benefits, i.e. cardio-vascular fitness when performed correctly [??, 1]. In this work, we aim to extend our analysis for the performance-oriented Nordic Walkers and focus on the pole use. In particular, we aim to analyse the pole use in alpine, long-distance athletes who use poles as support during the run.

In this project, we aim to develop an Android smartphone application (App) for the athletes. Concrete, the App should connect with two pole-attached, Bluetooth-enhanced accelerometers and stream data to the smartphone for sensor data processing.  Processed sensor data should inform the athlete about the pole use, impacts generated and accumulated, and the difference between body-sides. The project enables students to solve challenges of Android programming, sensor interactions, and data visualisation. Hence, the main aspects of the project include Android programming and sensor technology. In this seminar we aim to implement a prototype App, thus laying the foundation for potential follow-up work in theses.

Learning objectives

The learning objectives include, but are not limited to:

  • Learning design principles for an Android smartphone App.
  • Defining design requirements and propose solutions for the App.
  • Development and evaluation of the App
  • Gain practical experience in a project which combines technology and sports.
  • Teamwork.

Course data

Project type MSc.-Seminar, Group work 2-4 students
Extension to Theses can be discussed.
Work distribution 10% Theory, 70% Programming 20% Evaluation
Time of presence 4 SWS
Useful knowledge Android, Python, Sensor technology. Engineering background in electronics or informatics is highly welcomed.
Period Summer semester 2019
Med. Eng. Seminar Title Advanced Context Recognition (ACR)
First meeting Seminar introduction/Vorbesprechung
on 24. Apr 2019, 17:00-18:30 at Henkestr. 91, Haus 7, 1. OG, R 373


Up-to-date literature recommendations will be provided during the seminar.


The following publications highlight previous work at the Chair of Digital Health.

Adrian Derungs, Sebastian Soller, Gereon Berschin, Oliver Amft, "Nordic Walking 2.0 – Inertialsensoren messen Bewegungsqualität", Schriften der Deutschen Vereinigung für Sportwissenschaft (dvs 2017), Feldhaus Edition Czwalina, September 2017.


Adrian Derungs

Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg