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About Prof. Dr Kingma

Renowned vesitbular specialist Prof. Dr Kingma developed the BalanceBelt in collaboration with Elitac Wearables, as a substitute to the existing invasive and unsustainable treatments for severe balance disorders.

Background in biology and physics

Prof. Dr Kingma obtained Master’s degrees in Biology and Physics at Amsterdam University and received a PhD in Biophysics (Quantum Physics) at Leiden University.

He then went on to study Clinical Physics at Maastricht University, and specialised in Vestibulology at the departments of ORL-HNS at Amsterdam University and Maastricht University.

In 2001 he was appointed full Professor at Maastricht University, becoming emeritus professor in 2016. In parallel, he was appointed Professor in Physics of the Vestibular System at the Technical University Eindhoven (NL) from 2002 to 2012. From 2015 until 2021, he was also professor of Medical Physics at Tomsk National Research University and Director of the Tomsk International Science Program. In 2020, he was appointed adjunct Professor at the ENT department of Aalborg University in Denmark.

He currently holds a professor position in Aalborg and works as a scientist at Maastricht University.

Specialising in balance disorders

As a Clinical Professor in Vestibulology for several decades at Maastricht University Hospital, Prof. Dr  Kingma saw many patients in consultation for diagnosis and treatment of vestibular disorders.

In 1996 he was the primary initiator of the creation of international classification and standardisation committees within the Barany Society (the international interdisciplinary society that facilitates contact between scientists and clinicians involved in vestibular research).

Developing the BalanceBelt

In 2018, he developed the BalanceBelt with his research group: the only currently available non-invasive vestibular prothesis. To make the belt lighter, more effective and cheaper to produce, he joined forces with Utrecht-based wearables development company Elitac Wearables. The improved version was launched worldwide in 2020.

Read an interview with Prof. Dr Kingma

Key publications

Prof. Dr Kingma has given hundreds of keynote lectures around the world and contributed to many international peer reviewed WI-1 international publications in biophysics and medical sciences. A selection can be seen below:

Kingma H, van de Berg R. Anatomy, physiology, and physics of the peripheral vestibular system. Handb Clin Neurol. 2016;137:1-16. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-444-63437-5.00001-7. PMID: 27638059.
Perez Fornos A, Guinand N, van de Berg R, Stokroos R, Micera S, Kingma H, Pelizzone M, Guyot JP. Artificial balance: restoration of the vestibulo-ocular reflex in humans with a prototype vestibular neuroprosthesis. Front Neurol. 2014  Apr 29;5:66.
Kingma H, Felipe L, Gerards MC, et al. Vibrotactile feedback improves balance and mobility in patients with severe bilateral vestibular loss. J Neurol. 2019;266(Suppl 1):19-26. doi:10.1007/s00415-018-9133-z