Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Sensoria smart sock gives RespondWell foothold in wearables market

Steve Rogerson
January 7, 2015
Sensoria announced at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas that it has been working with RespondWell to create the next generation of rehabilitation patient monitoring using wearable textile sensing technology.

Sensoria's smart sock technology will enable physical therapy patients to perform gait and balance exercises from RespondWell and receive reliable and instant feedback from a virtual therapist on a tablet or large display screen. By imitating what they see on-screen, patients will receive correct, visual and easy-to-follow instructions for each exercise and are encouraged to complete the prescribed routines.

This same feedback information can also be accessed and analysed remotely and securely by the patient's therapist and healthcare team. Leveraging the Sensoria developer kit, this integrated system enables telehealth scenarios involving patient rehabilitation and healthy aging today.

"By using the Sensoria Sock we become part of the patient's daily workflow, which means more data collected on patient health status," said RespondWell chief executive officer John Grispon. “Patients using our assessment and physical therapy solution can benefit from the dynamic feedback provided by the Sensoria sock and anklet. The Sensoria developer kit offers healthcare developers truly wearable devices to build seamless solutions for telehealth and gait monitoring.”

Gait exercises help improve dynamic balance and gait functions for elderly individuals. According to a May 2003 study published in the Journal of Clinical Rehabilitation, performing gait exercises regularly for twelve weeks improved dynamic balance and gait functions of frail elderly subjects.

In the future, RespondWell may also use Sensoria wearables technology for stroke rehabilitation, disease management, sports rehabilitation and to improve general wellness.

"Sensoria is two things: a development platform and an integrated suite of smart garments that can turn gait and activity analytics into meaningful behavioural feedback," said Sensoria co-founder and chief executive officer Davide Vigano.

The RespondWell platform provides falls prevention, pulmonary, pre-diabetic and senior fitness modules. At the same time, it is designed to improve patients' rehabilitation experience and adherence using gamification, rewards and challenges.

The Sensoria smart sock is equipped with textile pressure sensors that connect to a lightweight anklet. The anklet is equipped with an accelerometer, local storage and Bluetooth Smart communications. The smart sock and anklet together measure a range of parameters including steps, repetitions, activity, balance and plantar pressure.

The data can be transmitted wirelessly to a mobile device for real-time alerts, and to the cloud for ex-post analytics and behavioural feedback.