This is why the Limbic Chair
We designed the Limbic Chair based on our knowledge of medicine and neuroscience in order to allow you be in an effortless state of weightlessness, using touch and movement in a way that makes you feel light, free, and happy. We call these movements ‘incentivized movements.‘
The incentivized movements create sensations, activating the limbic system of our brain, which translates body inputs like touch and movement, into emotions and mental states. It is also responsible for memory and learning processes, and motivation. This is the reason why being able to focus, learning, and movement are connected.
While balancing your spine in a way that you can sit upright effortlessly, the Limbic Chair allows for small, so-called micro movements, which are good for the spine, and gently train your core strength and coordination. The Limbic Chair also gives you the freedom to make larger movements, for additional joy and fun.
Or for controlling screen functions and navigating in virtual reality, see below.
Your spine is automatically upright, like when you are standing, while being effortlessly supported by our sitting shells, having a relaxing effect on your whole body.
- Constant micro-movements are good for the spine
- Freedom of movement, effortless flow
- No cramping up, no stiffness
The limbic System translates ‘incentivized movements’ into moods that we can feel. Good and light moods, in return, influence our creativity and thought processes.
- Free body helps your brain focus
- No mental cramping up
- Free flow body, free flow thoughts
Limbic Chair VR – Neurological Background
We designed the Limbic Chair VR as a tool for hands-free, gaze independent 3D navigation in VR.
With our scientific background in neuroscience and medicine, we designed the Limbic Chair VR based on how the brain and body’s nervous system best work together. We researched how navigation works in real life, particularly how it is possible that we can walk, even run, while typing on our smart phones or looking left and right without really having to focus on where exactly we are stepping most of the time.
Research revealed that evolution gave us two separate pathways that work almost independently, but in perfect coordination with each other. One of these pathways coordinates the focus area of our vision with our hands, while the other one connects our peripheral vision with our spinal gait control for locomotion.
Eye hand coordination is precise, complex, and puts a high cognitive load on our brain.
The first pathway is called hand-eye coordination. It coordinates the actions of our hands with the areas or objects our eyes are focusing on. It is a relatively new system in evolution and requires modern and sophisticated brain areas to work together so we can concentrate and solve complex problems. This is the main reason why we do not want to use our hands for navigation in VR – they are designed to do different, more complex, tasks.
PERIPHERAL VISION-SPINE COORDINATION
Peripheral vision-spine coordination is fast, reliable, and works mostly autonomously from our brain.
The second pathway is called peripheral vision-spine coordination. This system helps us intuitively move our legs to navigate through the world, even when our eye’s and our mind’s focus is somewhere else. This system is very old in evolutionary terms, making it reliable, simple, and fast. It performs almost automatically, requiring our attention only when an unexpected situation arises, for example, a fast vehicle suddenly crossing our path.
Motor learning shifts the use of one pathway to the other. For example, when we learn a new dance step, we focus our eyes on our feet and concentrate to get the step right. After a while, we can do the new dance step automatically without having to look at our feet or to think about it. By practicing and learning, we shift the process from the eye-hand pathway to the more autonomous, peripheral vision-spinal pathway.
The Limbic Chair VR allows us to optimize the use of these two systems. Navigating automatically using the peripheral vision-spinal pathway via the movement of ones legs, reduces the cognitive load on our brain, helping us focus on the task at hand.
Furthermore, because the spine is involved in navigation while using the Limbic Chair VR, levels of nauseation are observed to be lower than when compared to navigating in VR with hand held controllers such as joysticks, etc.
For more detailed scientific information, please also see the research of Prof. Philippe Fuchs.
Watch our TEDx talk where we explain how the Limbic Chair and the Limbic Chair VR were designed and how they work with our bodies and our nervous system:
Limbic Life’s work is based on our unique and novel design approach. We set emotional and functional goals and then work our way outwards from the brain to the body to designing the interface, applying our profound knowledge of neuroscience and medicine in the process.