Perfect Fit - The Self Tightening Shoe




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Published on Dec 16, 2010

PERFECT FIT - Self Tightening Shoes

The Perfect Fit is a pair of self-tightening and self-loosening shoes that can integrate seamlessly into our everyday lives, while improving the comfort and performance of our movements. The shoe understands the intentions of the wearer by responding to a variety of human kinesthetic motions and automatically adjusting tightness accordingly.

Through studying the way people walk and run, we implemented a set of different modes to the shoe. It first begins with a user putting on the shoe. As they stand in the shoe, pressure would be applied; thus, tightening the shoe. When walking, the shoe will tighten further so that the shoe will be tight enough to walk in. This effectively reduces risks for ankle injuries, which is commonly caused by loose fitting shoes. Finally, when the user is running, the shoe would be at its tightest to offer the best performance. When the shoe is to be removed, a simple gesture of crossing the leg and tilting the foot would loosen the laces, so that it can be taken off with ease.

Human beings understand the world through patterns. Likewise, the Perfect Fit recognizes kinesthetic motions by identifying a set of natural gestures. The shoes are able to recognize the intention of a user wishing to remove the shoes by detecting the angle of the foot. Common gestures of shoe removal across cultures allow this to happen. Another method of which the shoes utilize to understand kinesthetic motions is by calculating the ground contact time of the feet. This allows them to determine the movement speed of the user and respond accordingly. Through a number of research subjects, ranging from the ground contact time of Olympic runners to elderly women, we were able to program the shoe to recognize the user's movement speed and differentiating walking from running.


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