Fight stress with virtual reality

People want to relax, but they don’t have time: these two urges are in conflict. Juanjo Sáez (Executive MBA 2017) and his partners, Raúl Sánchez and Jorge Serna, sought a way to achieve that state of relaxation in the shortest time possible. To do so, they used virtual reality and a robotized massage couch. They called the result Woolax.

“We live in a world that’s continually busy. Our minds are active all day and that takes a physical toll.” Approximately 25% of people experience stress at least once a month, but “more than half don’t know what to do or have the time to de-stress.” They decided to take on the problem using technology. “The immersion achieved with virtual reality is capable of ‘deceiving’ the brain’s perception by 93%.”

Some companies, like hotels or airlines, use the Woolax service to care for their clients. Others, to pamper their employees (corporate wellness). “While we’re still a startup, we can create solutions ad hoc.” An example: their glasses for dentists’ patients, which hides the noise of the drill.

Sáez says that there are many managers and people in human resources departments who are concerned about this subject, but that many of them “have their hands tied” because of budget limitations. “Our challenge is to demonstrate the system’s efficiency through key performance indicators (KPIs), thus adapting ourselves to the language of the companies but without forgetting that we are dealing with people.”

To develop Woolax they have worked with experts in the psychology of stress. They are not the only ones on the market, but they have tried to improve some things that the competition hadn’t fully achieved. “Sometimes, to stay away from being boring, some develop solutions that aren’t really relaxing.”

Taking into account that 30% of worker absenteeism is caused by stress, it seems logical to start implementing solutions that address this problem.

By Inés Dolz

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