Swiss Invent Device to Prevent Falls, Useful for Sports

LAUSANNE, Switzerland – A small device that can evaluate parameters associated with walking could be a helpful option for determining the risk of a fall in a person, but specifically, an elderly person.

According to the US National Institute for Health, falls don’t “just happen,” and people don’t fall because they get older. Often, there are a number of personal risk factors to falling including muscle weakness, loss of balance and gait, among others.

Come now Physilog a device created by Gait Up, [a Swiss company which prides itself of developing “wearable sensor technology”], formed by the University Hospital of Lausanne (CHUV) and the Swiss Institute of Technology of Lausanne (EPFL).

Physilog is a motion sensor that according to its developers can detect the risk of a fall in an older person. It was first created in 2013 but just recently commercialized and upgraded.

While walking may seem as a rather simple thing to do, it is rather a complex manoeuvre:

“The sequencing of contact between the ground to the heel and then the toes, the fluidity that connects the movements, the direction of the feet – there are so many details that can become inoperable with age, illness, or accident.”

Spatial analysis of walking - Image by Gait Up.
Spatial analysis of walking – Image by Gait Up.

Gait Up scientists say Physilog could benefit not only the elderly but could be “equally useful for sports and physical therapy.”

More on: the EPFL website.


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