VR Training Safety: 5 Tips You Need To Know
Read Time: 4 minutes
You’ve decided that Virtual Reality (VR) training is the next step for your employees. There are so many exciting features and benefits that you are going to bring to your training program, but how safe is it for your employees?
In this article, we will talk about what VR training is and how you can conduct VR training safely.
What is VR Training?
Virtual Reality is an artificial environment in which the user is fully immersed in an experience. Putting on a VR headset can transport a user to a new location where they can look around themselves, walk up close computer-generated objects, and interact with items and people.
There are two types of virtual reality settings:
- 3DoF or Three Degrees of Freedom – Employees can interact with the environment via gaze control or a laser pointer controller. An excellent way to remember 3DoF is that your head and neck control the movement.
- 6DoF or Six Degrees of Freedom – It allows a person with a headset to move freely and organically in a virtual environment. Employees can observe and walk or move around objects placed in the environment, just like they would if those objects were real. An excellent way to remember 3DoF is that your full body controls the movement.
Virtual Reality has become an increasingly valuable tool in learning and development, allowing your education to extend beyond an eLearning course or classroom setting. VR simulates any world you can imagine, enabling your learners to encounter true-to-life scenarios without facing real-world risk.
Read More: What is Virtual Reality Training?
How To Conduct VR Training Safely
Immersive learning is the next stage of learning and development. As we start to utilize these new tools and new technologies, it’s the facilitator’s responsibility to ensure all of the participants are safe during their training.
Create a Safe Environment
As you can imagine, participating in a fully immersive experience means that you need to ensure that your environment is safe to be in. Set up your VR training away from other people, stairs, balconies, windows, furniture, or other items that you can bump into or knock down when using the VR headset.
It’s always safer to use VR sitting down unless the designers if the VR program made standing and walking a critical piece of the training.
Short VR Activities
VR is not meant to be used for hours at a time. When used for training, VR should be designed as a short activity to integrate into your program. We recommend 20 minutes for your VR activity length to avoid disorientation and possible simulator sickness.
VR headset manufacturers like Oculus suggest a “10 to 15-minute break every 30 minutes, even if you don’t think you need it.”
Use the Buddy System
Most training tends to be conducted in pairs or groups, but it is most important when utilizing VR training. Have a second person act as a spotter for the VR participant to ensure they are safe in their real-world designated VR environment.
Use Proper Sanitation
Anytime you share a device with others, proper sanitation is essential. Sanitize any part that touches your face between users. If you tend to sweat on your head, wear a bandanna between the top of the headset and your forehead.
To quicken the process and keep your headset clean, consider investing in VR Covers that are machine washable.
Read More: Taking Care of Your Oculus Rift
Watch for Symptoms
VR is still a relatively new technology, and there are not many studies on the effects. Some people are more susceptible to eye strain, headaches, and nausea. If you have an employee that suffers from motion sickness, they may suffer from motion sickness from the VR experience as well. The most important rule is that if your employee starts to feel ill, have them stop immediately.
Pros and Cons of Virtual Reality Training
- Safe Learning Environment – You can give your employees a safe learning environment where they can take risks without affecting customers or the business.
- Exciting and Engaging – VR will create a buzz and get people excited to use the technology and participate in the development program.
- Adaptable – You can adapt your program to make it accessible to all of your employees.
- Physical Side Effects – Not everyone can participate in virtual reality programs. Some people will get headaches, nausea, eye strain, or even worse symptoms.
- Technology Development – Newer hardware, upgrade capabilities, and brand new accessories are always on the horizon. You may have to refresh your program to stay current.
- Set Up Cost – Between the hardware, designing, programming, etc. it may be daunting to your leadership team.
Is Virtual Reality Training Right for You?
We covered what VR training is and how you can conduct VR training that is safe for your employees.
So now it’s time to ask, is Virtual Reality right for you?