About this Research Topic
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, governments and organizations are encouraging or mandating people to minimize physical contact by working or studying from home. This cautious approach has resulted in many confining themselves at home and reducing their activity outside their residential areas. With the drastic reduction in social and outdoor activities such as exercising, travel and mingling, many are turning to digital means to improve their physical and mental wellbeing. For example, virtual and augmented reality devices allow people to engage in physical workouts in an immersive way to maintain their physical health, establish and maintain interpersonal relationships, or go for virtual sightseeing tours for a mindful and relaxing experience to sustain their mental wellbeing. Immersive technologies targeted at the general public therefore appear to be a feasible solution in promoting physical and mental health outcomes.
Indeed, past research has shown the effectiveness of immersive technologies in these areas. However, most of these studies were conducted in physical lab environments, in circumstances that are largely different from the current pandemic landscape. Less is known regarding how people are using immersive technologies for their physical and mental wellbeing during a forced constraining environment such as COVID-19, and their effectiveness in promoting physical and mental health outcomes. As risks invite opportunities as well, the COVID-19 pandemic has made the entire world a large laboratory setting where researchers can observe the outcomes of using immersive technologies in our daily activity in a less obstructive way.
As such, this Research Topic welcomes articles from various interdisciplinary perspectives to contribute to a stronger empirical, theoretical and methodological understanding of the use of immersive technologies in promoting health outcomes.
We invite submissions that include, but are not limited to, the following areas:
- The use of immersive technologies for wellbeing by the general population during COVID-19
- Empirical studies on the effectiveness of immersive technologies on personal health outcomes
- Impact of the use of immersive technologies for personal health during the pandemic on society (e.g., interpersonal, socio-cultural, economic implications)
- Challenges and opportunities in understanding the use of immersive technologies for personal health and wellbeing during COVID-19
- Theoretical approaches to the study of immersive technologies on physical and mental wellbeing
- Innovative methodological solutions to explore the impact of immersive technologies on individual health during COVID-19
Keywords: Physical Health, Mental Wellbeing, COVID-19, Healthy Eating
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.