Project Description

  • Client: iShear (Netherlands)
  • Year: 2016
  • Briefing: Develop a measuring tool for shear force in wheelchair bound people.

People who are bound to wheelchairs often have pressure wounds on their upper legs and behind. When they visit an occupational therapist the measurement tool most often used is a pressure mat to determine what kind of seating, pillow and adjustments are required to give the best comfort and prevent decubitus (pressure wounds). Studio Mango was approached by the company behind iShear to find a way to measure sheer force between the seating surface the wheelchair bound person, it was commonly known in the field that this shear force played a larger part in discomfort and wounds then pressure.

After a few months of trial and error a prototype was built which could not only accurately measure the total sheer force in the seating surface but also positive versus negative, the direction of forces and differences between buttocks and legs. After this success a period of trials followed in which occupational therapists from all over the world tested the prototype and gave their input. This input was used to create the final version iShear measurement tool as it has been released in the market, easy to install on any type of wheelchair and with a simple to understand app which gathers all data and gives realtime feedback to the therapist to make the best possible adjustments for the comfort and health of their clients. Since its introducion the iShear is slowly taking over the worldwide used pressure mat as the most important tool for wheelchair seating comfort.

Besides the hardware all electronics and the apps (Android & iOS) have been developed by Studio Mango. Series manufacturing of the iShear device is also arranged by Studio Mango.