Spinovo is an electronic pain relief garment that has been designed to help relieve pain for chronic back pain sufferers. Unlike other back pain products on the market, Spinovo offers a holistic approach by providing heating, cooling and transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) therapies as well as preventing back pain through biofeedback. Removable packs clip into the garment and provides feedback through the remote control interface.
The flexible film bend sensor and electromyography (EMG) sensors monitor the user’s posture and muscle fatigue. Both sensors accurately measure small changes in electrical resistance, which are communicated by the circuit packs within the garment to the remote control.
Two Polymer lithium ion batteries are located in the front pockets, which allow the garment to be heated for up to one hundred and fifty minutes on the full setting. The batteries are joined together through hinges to allow for maximum movement and flexibility.
I was inspired to research the topic of back pain after seeing how chronic back pain largely affected my father’s daily life. What I discovered was that lower back pain is the one of the most common and complicated health problems spanning all ages, genders and cultures. It is a problem that is often long-lasting and re-occurring but is different for every individual sufferer.
In developing Spinovo, primary and secondary research was conducted. Physiotherapists, chiropractors and a teacher of the Alexander Technique were consulted for their views and experience with the causes and treatment of back pain. Interviews with sufferers of back pain were also conducted to discover the environments and activities in which most back pain was experienced. I came to the discovery that the main challenge for this project was to design a product that could target these common problems and address them holistically.
Another challenge was to design the product so that it was simple to use. The remote control, for example, provides feedback intuitively by mapping the muscle fatigued areas through backlit LEDs within the remote control. An alarm sounds when poor posture is detected over a prolonged period of time.