Shoes Track Whether Athletes Are Running Properly

Shoes Track Whether Athletes Are Running Properly

This new form of wearable tech has a more intimate relationship with your foot than even most socks.

Rachel Pincus
  • 5 december 2013

For most of us, getting exercise while running is all about speed and endurance. Getting your heart rate to the proper levels, staying properly hydrated, and finding a killer playlist are part of it as well. Existing digital running companions often focus on these elements by measuring just pulse and breathing rate. However, people constantly strain their joints and frequently injure themselves while running, to say nothing of the habits and postures that cost them performance and calorie-burning. It can be difficult to find these bad habits unless you’re very physically self-aware.

EU Project RUNSAFER, a prototype of smartphone-assisted athletic shoe that wirelessly (via Bluetooth) measures orthopedic as well as biometric factors, takes aim at this problem. Developed by the Kelme brand and led by the Fraunhofer Institute, RUNSAFER “medically evaluates and monitors training while jogging,” Dr. Andreas Heinig of the Photonic Microsystems IPMS Lab explained. “It informs the runner for example of incorrect foot position, asymmetric loading, or warns of exhaustion or overload. There has never been a comparable device before.” Accelerometers are supplemented by GPS for more accurate positioning; they can warn whether the foot is coming down too flat or at too much of an angle. The device and its companion website also make recommendations for training routines and safer habits.

The RUNSAFER components have already had some practical needs taken care of; a charging base station has been developed, and it might use inductive, or wireless, charging technology. The tracking component can also be switched between different footwear, making it an investment likely to last many years. The main practical issue is miniaturizing the system for manufacture, and how much that will cost is unclear. Meanwhile, Google brought a running shoe to SXSW, but it wasn’t quite so advanced, preferring to stay on the motivational side of things: “In case you forgot, it’s left right left right [foot].”

Sources: SlashgearSports Med, Runner’s World
Image: Fraunhofer Institute


Lancôme's Newest Campaign Stars A Domestic Abuse Survivor

Arts & Culture Yesterday

Small Urban Pavilions Create A Nature Refuge In East London

These relaxing micro shelters provide a haven amidst chaotic city environments

Travel Yesterday

Travel Laundry Pouch Washes Your Clothes Wherever You Are

The Scrubba Wash Bag helps anyone wash their clothes easily and quickly with just a little water and soap


Get PSFK's Related Report: Future of Automotive

See All
Social Media Yesterday

Swipe Up To Register To Vote On Snapchat

The social platform has partnered with TurboVote to help young people easily enroll in less than one minute

Children Yesterday

Battle Card Game Promotes Childhood Vaccinations

An Australian doctor has developed a playful way to inform parents about immunization and entertain kids

Related Expert

Linda Boff

Open Innovator

Fitness / Sport Yesterday

Oakley And Intel’s Sunglasses Give You A Built-In Personal Trainer Wherever You Go

The sunglasses/earbuds hybrid tracks your performance and lets you know how well your workouts are going

Experiential Marketing Yesterday

UNICEF’s ‘Time Machine’ Tells Stories With Data

An experiential installation at the UN General Assembly reminds us why every child matters

Design & Architecture Yesterday

Watch The World’s Tallest Building Become An LED Display

Burj Khalifa gives a backstage look at how the transformation came to be


Future Of Automotive
Scenarios Driving The Digital Transformation Of An Industry

PSFK Op-Ed september 23, 2016

Productivity Expert: The Magic Of The Five-Hour Workday

Stephan Aarstol, Founder of Tower Paddle Boards, explains why the modern notion of office hours needs to evolve

PSFK Labs Yesterday

Modern Workplace Culture: No More Fat Cats Or Kissing Ass

Samar Birwadker, CEO & Co-Founder of Good & Co, on designing shared organizational values to optimize employee happiness and success

Travel Yesterday

Boeing Wants To Make Your Flight Better With Cloud And Star Projections

The manufacturer is trying to patent a projection system that would allow them to project images onto a plane's interior surfaces

Latin America Yesterday

Colombians Teach Dance To Fund Students’ Education

Chocó to Dance is a platform that shows you how to replicate popular Latin dances to help create scholarships for local students

Work Yesterday

Editorial Roundtable: What A People-First Workplace Must Prioritize First

Managed By Q, Soma, Workbar, Primary, AltSchool and thinkPARALLAX on why employee fulfillment is a journey and not a destination

Culture Yesterday

Brand Engagement At The Gates Of The World’s Largest Open-Air Gallery

Tiger Beer and a neighborhood-minded nonprofit celebrate and promote New York's creative spirit by beautifying 100 security gates


Future Of Work
Cultivating The Next Generation Of Leaders

Technology Yesterday

How Technology Can Save The World By Saving Time

PSFK attends the Social Good Summit 2016 to see how new tech is changing the world for the better

Travel Yesterday

Marriott’s Gravity Room Installation Gives Travelers A New Perspective

The luxury hotel chain's #MGravityRoom invites visitors to snap and share pictures of its inverted set up

No search results found.