Light-Board reaction time test


So I'm into martial arts and I was surfing the net looking for hand-eye and reaction time tests. I came across this
http://www.topendsports.com/testing/tests/reaction-batak.htm

The NFL and other sports trainers use it to  either gauge or improve reaction time, it's very popular among boxers and hockey goalies. I want one, but of course it's outrageously expensive so I was wondering if anyone had any advice on how I could make something similar of my own. I was thinking of using LED lights and some kind of pressure switch to register my touching the light. the main problem is I don't have any idea how to make the lights blink randomly. if anyone has any Ideas I would greatly appreciate it
thanks!




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Nikiniku2 years ago

These comments might be helpful for people who are knowledgeable about electronics but useless for others. What I'm looking for is a guide for building such a device for someone with NO knowledge of electronics. Aren't there any kits that anyone could put together? micro controller? sample code? piezo sensors? drum pad controllers? logic gates? flip flops? Happ controls? Sorry, but these terms are of no help.

Nikiniku2 years ago
caitlinsdad2 years ago

The easiest thing to do is to use a microcontroller like an Arduino to build an "electronic Simon game". Simon blinks randomly and you can program the timed response and have it score with hits and misses. There are a lot of Simon projects out there to grab sample code. It would be easy to mod that with piezo sensors instead of switches so you can mount them in hitting surfaces like a punching bag dummy. If you look up drum pad controllers with arduino, you will get the same idea for implementation. Good luck.

Nikiniku2 years ago

I've long thought of building a reaction tester along the lines of the Batak device, although the Batak seems to be new, and I've been to thinking of it for years. Anyway, would it be so difficult? Isn't there an "off-the-shelf" item called a random light generator?

This is an interesting device. I see from the website you reference, the name derives from the words "bat" and "attack". I could see how a person who trains with this device would be better prepared for an actual attack by a bunch of bats..

Anyway, the design of the circuiry will depend on how much of the functionality of the commercial device you wish to replicate. The web site lists sever different programs that can be used. Although it was not shown in the video or pictures, I assume there is also some kind of display that shows your "score" or other feedback on performance. If you want a device with capabilities like the commercial unit, a microcontroller based design would be absolutely necessary. If you just wanted to have it do one simpler routine, it could be done with logic gates and flip flops, etc, but it would still get to be a fair amount of electronics.

I don't know your skill level, but I would suggest a microcontroller design in any case. This would also allow you to implement cool things like an output to a PC to record timing to track your performance improvement over time.

As for the switches, they just appear to be large push button switches. I would suggest using the type found on arcade games. They are large diameter (about 1") and are intended for applications that could take alot of abuse. They're also relatively inexpensive. Try Happ Controls for those switches.