Rehabilitation can dramatically improve mobility and function for those with conditions like osteoarthritis, cerebral palsy, and Parkinson’s disease. However, rehabilitation typically requires an in-person visit to a clinic, increasing expense and limiting access. Mobile devices, like smartphones and smartwatches, promise to revolutionize rehabilitation and movement science more broadly, but the technology and validation of these devices for such applications are limited.  

The Mobilize Center was created with the vision of enabling the research community to use mobile technology, such as 2-D video and wearable sensors, and other large-scale datasets to: 

  • Quantify movement biomechanics
  • Extract insights about conditions that reduce mobility, and 
  • Advance precision rehabilitation 

We will mobilize this revolution by developing open-source software that addresses barriers to the use of mobile technology and machine learning in movement-related academic and clinical research.  Our data-sharing hubs will be a central resource for those developing new algorithms and digital biomarkers. And we will establish partnerships to drive our software and program development, thus ensuring that the Center addresses the pressing needs of the biomedical research community. 

The Mobilize Center is based at Stanford University and is a Biomedical Technology Resource Center (BTRC) funded through the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Building on its foundations as an NIH Big Data to Knowledge Center of Excellence, the Center’s innovative technologies will transform research and the diagnosis, monitoring, and treatment of mobility disorders. 

Related Efforts

Restore Center: An NIH-funded Medical Rehabilitation Research Resource Network Center providing vital research infrastructure and training to use mobile sensors to monitor real-world outcomes for those with movement impairments. 

Stanford Catalyst Project for Motivating Mobility: An interdisciplinary project based at Stanford University to motivate mobility and health using smartphones and wearables with an evidence-based, interdisciplinary framework

Neuromuscular Biomechanics Research Lab (NMBL):  The research lab led by Mobilize Center PI Scott Delp. Based at Stanford University, the lab utilizes biomechanics, computer science, imaging, robotics, and neuroscience to analyze muscle function, study human movement, design medical technologies, and optimize human performance.