Practically Feasible Sensor-Embedded Kinetic Assessment Piano System for Quantifying Striking Force of Digits During Piano Playing

Kuan Yin Lai, Chieh Hsiang Hsu, Yu Chen Lin, Chung Hung Tsai, Cheng Feng Lin, Li Chieh Kuo, Fong Chin Su

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: Understanding the pathogenesis of playing-related hand disorders through investigations based on coordination and biomechanical perspectives is indispensable. This study aimed to establish a sensor-embedded kinetic assessment piano system (SeKAPS) and conduct reliability and validity tests for this system. In addition, the differences in digit coordination between professional pianists and non-musicians were investigated. Methods: Twelve subminiature load cells were embedded in the middle of the 12 corresponding keys of an upright piano. A customized calibrated system with a load cell was used to establish the criterion-related validity of the SeKAPS. The reliability of the SeKAPS was determined by 22 volunteer pianists. The other ten professional pianists and ten non-musicians were recruited to indicate the feasibility of the SeKAPS to distinguish the performing differences between groups. Results: The R 2 values of regression analyses for the load cells were 0.993–0.999 (p < 0.001), indicating high validity. The ICC values of the modified keys were 0.82–0.93, indicating high reliability. The results indicate that SeKAPS is accurate in detecting the striking force of digits during piano playing. Significant differences existed in the mean peak force and mean CVs of the peak force of the specific digits between the two groups. The results showed differences in finger control strategies between the pianists and non-musicians. Conclusion: The SeKAPS may provide a valuable assessment for assisting pianists in understanding digit force control and movement strategies to achieve efficient digit coordination.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)749-757
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Medical and Biological Engineering
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2023 Dec

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biomedical Engineering


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