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How do you walk, exactly?

A sock that measures steps and foot placements and then, via an accompanying device, wirelessly sends the information to a smartphone application. The fibres sense load and movement through the changes in electrical current that result from the fabric in the sock being stretched as the foot moves. These changes are monitored, and data is converted into feedback on the way the user walks – which can say quite a lot about their movement patterns and state of health. This will provide the healthcare with data with which to diagnose diseases and tailor treatments. The sock can also be used in sports in order to, for example, optimise running technique.

 

Researcher: Karin Rundqvist, Nils-Krister Persson and Leif Sandsjö

The sock features piezoelectric fibres, which have been developed by the researcher Anja Lund in collaboration with the research institute Swerea IVF.