Run&Tap: Investigation of On-Body Tapping for Runners

An empirical investigation of the feasibility of smart textile t-shirts for runners.


Devices like smartphones, smartwatches, and fitness trackers enable runners to control music, query fitness parameters such as heart rate and speed or be guided by coaching apps. But while these devices are portable, interacting with them during running is difficult: they usually have small buttons or touchscreens which force the user to slow down to interact with them properly. On-body tapping is an interaction technique that allows users to trigger actions by tapping at different body locations eyes-free. This paper investigates on- body tapping as a potential input technique for runners. We conducted a user study to evaluate where and how accurately runners can tap on their body. We motion-captured participants while tapping locations on their body and running on a treadmill at different speeds. Results show that a uniform layout of five targets per arm and two targets on the abdomen achieved a 96% accuracy rate. We present a set of design implications to inform the design of on-body interfaces for runners.

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Paper (ISS 17)
Project folder [Internal Access} 
Funding project: Intuitex
Contact: Nur Hamdan




  • Nur Al-huda Hamdan, Ravi Kanth Kosuru, Christian Corsten and Jan Borchers. Run&Tap: Investigation of On-Body Tapping for Runners.  In ISS '17: Proceedings of the 2017 ISS Conference on Interactive Surfaces and Spaces, ACM, New York, NY, USA, Oct 2017.
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Contact: Nur Hamdan

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