Hierarchical, Multi-Sensor Based Classification of Daily Life Activities: Comparison with State-of-the-Art Algorithms Using a Benchmark Dataset
Insufficient physical activity is the 4th leading risk factor for mortality. Methods for assessing the individual daily life activity (DLA) are of major interest in order to monitor the current health status and to provide feedback about the individual quality of life. The conventional assessment of DLAs with self-reports induces problems like reliability, validity, and sensitivity. The assessment of DLAs with small and light-weight wearable sensors (e.g. inertial measurement units) provides a reliable and objective method. State-of-the-art human physical activity classification systems differ in e.g. the number and kind of sensors, the performed activities, and the sampling rate. Hence, it is difficult to compare newly proposed classification algorithms to existing approaches in literature and no commonly used dataset exists. We generated a publicly available benchmark dataset for the classification of DLAs. Inertial data were recorded with four sensor nodes, each consisting of a triaxial accelerometer and a triaxial gyroscope, placed on wrist, hip, chest, and ankle. Further, we developed a novel, hierarchical, multi-sensor based classification system for the distinction of a large set of DLAs. Our hierarchical classification system reached an overall mean classification rate of 89.6% and was diligently compared to existing state-of-the-art algorithms using our benchmark dataset. For future research, the dataset can be used in the evaluation process of new classification algorithms and could speed up the process of getting the best performing and most appropriate DLA classification system.