Background and Goals Neuromuscular deficits due to physiological ageing, multimorbidity and inactivity constitute the most recent cause of falls, immobility and the resulting consequences. Within the project “vitaliSHOE” a monitoring and training system will be developed, which will slow down or even prevent the need for care by identifying problems at an early stage giving the opportunity for early balance and activity training and medical intervention. In this way the system will contribute to a longer, more independent living and active ageing, which is a main target of the benefit-program.
The acquisition, processing and interpretation of movement-parameters directly on the foot of elderly people together with visual data-representation and feedback will allow a long-term assessment and trend estimation of the state of health and activity of a person. In addition a well directed and professionally supported increase of the user’s level of activity can be reached.
In this context the development of a „smart textile“ prototype in terms of an instrumented shoe is a technologically primary target of the project. Via a sensor network and an embedded system integrated in the shoe, characteristical motion patterns will be extracted by applying current methods of sensorsignal-fusion and data abstraction.
The extracted motion data will be further interpreted at a base station and prepared for a visual presentation which can easily be understood by elderly people. At the graphical user interface the data will either be presented in real time as feedback for training purpose or as trend and set of advices to enable a long-term assessment of the person’s state. In addition the data will be made available to experts and caregivers via a client-server-connection.
In order to be able to meet the needs and wishes of the end-user, the project will be carried out with a high degree of user involvement. Potential future users – elderly people, nursing staff and medical experts – will iteratively be involved in the development process right from the beginning to the end of the project. The aim of this user-centered approach is to develop a close to the market prototype.