Scientists at Newcastle University have designed a computer game to help stroke victims recuperate.
The Circus Challenge game, created with a computer game studio, aims to help patients recover motor functions. Players use wireless controllers to perform virtual acts such as lion taming and plate spinning.
It is hoped the PC-based game will serve as a cheaper and more effective alternative to existing treatments.
Janet Eyre, professor of Paediatric Neuroscience at Newcastle University, said the game would help meet the shortfall of trained therapists.
"With our video game, people get engrossed in the competition and action of the circus characters and forget that the purpose of the game is for therapy," she said.