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FallWall & BoneMetrics [Fall Prevention & Fall Analysis]

FallWall is a fall protector that is superior to current airbag based products. BoneMetrics is a new international bone injury data service.

Photo of Alain Trottier
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What challenges or opportunities are you trying to address within the problem? (200 characters or less)

Current airbag protectors are high cost and have low adoption. Current fall data is sparse and error prone.

FallWall + BoneMetrics address a serious medical problem:

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, falls are the number one cause of injuries and deaths from injury for older Americans. In 2014, according to a CDC report, older Americans had 29 million falls, costing over $30 billion in Medicare costs. And the number of Americans over 65 will double by 2060, according to a 2016 report by the Population Research Bureau.

Available Products

There are several products on the market including static pads and dynamic air bags. These airbags work in three steps:

  1. Detects a fall
  2. Deploys airbag
  3. Alerts caregivers

Body airbags have matured and work reasonably well. Helite is a company that makes motorcycle airbag vests and now offers Hip’Air an airbag belt they say absorbs 90 percent of the impact from a regular fall, whereas a regular hip protector (padded underwear) supposedly only absorbs 10 percent of the impact.

Airbag Problems

The two problems with current airbag protectors are high cost and low adoption due to negative perception and inconvenience. Hip’Air costs about $800 so few can afford them. The Tango Belt [was ActiveProtective] is similarly priced. Even those can afford them, don't like them, feel degraded using them.  

Cost Analysis

Hip located airbag costs are about $800 [chest air bags cost is only $400]

Chest air bags for motorcycle riders average $400.

  1. Spidi Neck DPS-1 Airbag Vest
  2. Motoairbag MAB VZero Airbag Vest
  3. Held Clip In Air Protector Vest
  4. Helite Airnest Airbag Vest
  5. Ixon IX-Airbag U03
  6. Bores Helite Airbag System


FallWall + BoneMetrics

FallWall is an on demand fall cushion system.

BoneMetrics is a combination of on person devices and Amazon cloud based service which together improve population bone injury prevention and treatment.


FallWall Cost - the two primary components are the detector and the airbag system. Current detectors are expensive. FallWall lowers the detector costs in two ways: using a smartphone or smart watch which come with fall detector technology or building a fall detector from Ardruino and sensor combination which costs about $50.   

Adoption - FallWall is more likely to be adopted because it is built into the clothes instead of the current ugly belt systems on the market. 


We can't improve what we don't measure. BoneMetrics makes reliable & comparable bone and health metrics made easy.

Problem - Correctly stating cause and effect of a bone injury is absent or unreliable in current medical data and reports due to faulty data collection methodology. The majority of bone injury details are collected from patients who recount their fall. This is error prone and unreliable. Worse, the data is not centralized nor standardized.

Similar to a flight recorder, A.K.A blackbox, a fall recorder, A.K.A graybox, is an electronic recording device placed on a person for the purpose of facilitating the investigation of falls, accidents and bumps. The gray box uploads data to the BoneMetrics service hosted in Amazon AWS. Graybox allows meaningful trend analysis.

There are two different fall recorder devices: the fall data recorder (FDR) preserves the recent history of the person's movement through the recording of dozens of parameters collected several times per second; the body cam recorder (BCR) preserves the visual history of the person's movements. The two devices may be combined in a single unit. Together, the FDR and BCR give an accurate testimony, narrating the person's movement history, to assist in any later investigation. This device is periodically uploaded to the BoneMetrics service.


  1. Manage Clients: Create multiple client profiles with one account.
  2. Calculate Bone and Health Fitness: Comprehensive health and fitness assessments.
  3. Track Progress: Visual data of individuals and entire population.
  4. Share Results: Securely store and share data with clients and other professionals.

BoneMetrics will do for elderly bone care what the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) did for crime fighting. UCR compiles official data on crime in the United States, published by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). BoneMetrics intends to be a nationwide, cooperative statistical effort of hospital, physician, university and college, county, state, and federal law enforcement agencies voluntarily reporting data on elderly falls and injuries.

With aggregate data over time, the app can get health practitioners better data on what interventions are useful. 

Who is your target end user and why will they be interested? (650 characters or less)

Seniors, 60 years old and older.

How is your idea scaleable? (650 characters or less)

FallWall + BoneMetrics are highly scaleable. Benefits of hosting BoneMetrics at Amazon AWS 1. Easy to use - AWS is designed to quickly and securely build applications. 2. Flexible - With AWS, we receive a virtual environment that is extremely flexible while preserving options for building new solutions. 3. Cost-Effective - We pay only for the compute power, storage, and other resources FallWall + BoneMetrics use. 4. Reliable - With AWS, FallWall + BoneMetrics take advantage of a scalable, reliable, and secure global computing infrastructure. 5. Scalable and high-performance - Using AWS tools, Auto Scaling, and Elastic Load Balancing, FallWall + BoneMetrics can scale up or down based on demand. 6. Secure - AWS utilizes an end-to-end approach to secure and harden our infrastructure, including physical, operational, and software measures.

What do/will you measure to know if your solution worked? (500 characters or less)

FallWall: Execute battery of fall tests, ensuring the airbags deploy under specified conditions and ensure they don't deploy when they shouldn't. BoneMetrics: we will collect data from many sources throughout the U.S. and abroad. This vast quantity of data will improve the quality controls and procedures.

What is the current stage of development of your idea?

  • Blueprint: We are exploring the idea and gathering the inspiration and information we need to test it with real users.

If you were to become a Top Idea, would you want to actively participate in piloting your idea?

  • I want my idea piloted, and I prefer to do my own piloting in collaboration with the health system and with assistance from the Challenge partner

Tell us about yourself or your team (500 characters or less)

I'm a career computer engineer who has solved numerous digital problems, but also physical ones also.

Location (50 characters)

Kennesaw, GA, 30152

What is your legal / organizational structure?

  • We are individuals

Innovator/Organizational Characteristics

  • Veteran-led organization

How did you hear about the Challenge?

  • OpenIDEO social media

Why are you participating in this Challenge?

Serious problem that has only partial answers. I believe FallWall, or similar solutions submitted by others, will add value to the fracture care journey.


Join the conversation:

Photo of Manisha Laroia

Hi Alain Trottier 
Thank you for being part of the Ideas Phase of the Healthy Bones Challenge.
Make any last minute tweaks you wish to, asap. Like adding images or changes in text.
The DEADLINE for idea submission is Wednesday July 3rd, 2019 5pm PST.

A CHECKLIST to guide you is here:
Please make sure your idea does the following:
1) Clearly define the problem
2) Connects to at least one opportunity area
3) States how & when user accesses the solution
4) Tells the story

Let me know if you need anything.
All the best for the next phase of the challenge.

OpenIDEO Challenge Team

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