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2 inches of extra sole

Based on simple physics, I believe that adding 2 inches of sole at the rear part, will give more stability and help prevent sliping.

Photo of juan lambertini
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Who is your idea designed for and how does it enable older adults to live their best possible life by preventing falls?

I believe this simple adaptation will help prevent falls.

This started by trying to give more balance to the user and avoiding the sliping part that occurs when the heel of the fornt leg (when walking) slips. This Is one of the major causes of accidentes when slipping and falling according to .

So I decided to add a suppport to the sole and see what happens...

I made a wood sole with the attachment because It was hard to attach it directly to the shoe.

Because I can´t just slip and fall and try to simulate a fall. I decided to run a distance of 3 meters and try to slip and see what happens.

On the splipperiest part of the house (where I did this test) with a dry floor I slipped 80 cm.

With a wet floor 1.15 meters. 

And now with my great invention...=) 

And yes!! On a dry floor with my attachment I only slipped 5 cm. But the truth Is, I 

didn´t look for this. I was searching for more stability, not more grip to the floor. I practically didn´t slip. I even tried this several times with the same response. I even tripped forward (because of inercia)... I tried to learn a bit more about the subject, and everybody seems to agree that the size or the area in the slipping action doesn´t matter ( a physics thing). The materials could some how change the the friction between both parts, but wood should slip a lot more than a rubber sole. And what happend with water?

  20 cms!!! It´s like 6 times less... I´m not sure, after seeing several sliping videos on youtube. One of the first things that happens when slipping is that the front part of the shoe tends to go up. I believe that even if it´s just a little bit, your not in contact with the ground any more, and that that Is why one slips and falls. It all happens to fast. My pursuit of balance gave me more grasp to the ground (sounds kind of yoga).  

And it works as a ready to go tuffet too. A walked a couple of hours with these on. They were ok. No problmes after a while I started to feel the screws ( that screwed the sneakers to the sole) on my heels and I had to take them off. The good part though, Is that I never fell. 

What early, lightweight experiment might you try out in your own community to find out if the idea will meet your expectations?

At first I would see how to attach the extra heel without having to screw it threw the shoe. Once this is resolved, I would ask elder people to try It on and see what happens. Just walk with them and ask them what they feel. I would like to work on the tripping part too. I believe that the answer on this is absorbing the impact rather than sliping over it (like skies and bobsleds do).

What skills, input, or guidance from the OpenIDEO community would be most helpful in building out or refining your idea?

Other ways to simulate slipping and triping without broken bones. The best way to simulate a slip. Anything is welcome.

How long has your idea existed?

  • 0-3 months

This idea emerged from

  • An OpenIDEO Outpost or Chapter
  • An Individual

Tell us about your work experience:

One final away from becoming a Industrial designer. And I work as a salesman of a beverage company.


Join the conversation:

Photo of Kate Rushton

Hi Juan!

Thank you for sharing your idea and all the photos - it really shows the thought and testing process!

Have you been able to find anyone else to try your shoes? What sort of feedback have you received from a comfort/aesthetic point of view?

Photo of juan lambertini

Hi Kate... Well I went to a senior citizens club. I had the luck that they were In some kind of meeting (near 20 people). So I had a chance to ask them for some feedback... In resume I had two answers. The first, that matches both Tianqi's research and Andrea's Is that a woman wouldn´t wear them. Only If she has a serious problem with walking. Although I explained them that It was research model, and that at the end it would look prettier. They didn´t seem very convinced on trying them on. On the other hand. The men found it interesting, they would not only give it a try (they didn´t at that moment because they were In this meeting) but even one of them wanted to present It to a region seniors convention with over 200 people invited. I thank them for the invitation, but I prefered to have It a bit more elaborated.
They were concerned on the weight issue, but they felt It was ok
The other thing Is that most of them agreed that most of their falls was becuase of triping more than by sliping. That perhaps It would be better to work on that issue.
So... I can´t answer your questions yet. But I think I will be able to answer you back quite soon.

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