Smart Takes

Shoes that help you dance

Shoes that help you dance

Posting in Design

They don't dance for you, but these shoes will track the movements of your feet and let you know when you step out of line.

They look like something Marty McFly wore during one of the "Back to the Future" movies. But, as Tom Sykes of the Loughborough Design School will attest, his prototype GroundWave Shadow Trainers will do something far cooler than lacing themselves: they will teach you how to dance.

The shoes track a wearer’s movements and then sends the data to a smartphone app for real-time feedback and instructions. Users can also link the app to social networks to challenge friends to a dance-off or share scores.

Designer Sykes says that he made the shoes not only to help people improve their moves, but to offer kids an interactive way to exercise.

He writes on the project website:

"The aim of this project is to produce a design proposal for a product that introduces exercise into a child’s life in an innovative and exciting way.

"This product combines exercise with video game style interaction. Whereas many products, such as the Wii approach the union of physical interaction and gaming with a bias towards the game and start with the gaming platform, this product gives full attention to the quality of the exercise thus approaching the union with a bias towards the health benefits."

The GroundWave Shadow Trainers won the 2012 James Dyson Foundation Bursary. No word yet on when they will be available.

SHOES TEACH YOU HOW TO DANCE  [Discovery News]

Photo via Tom Sykes

Share this

Amy Kraft

Weekend Editor

Contributing Editor Amy Kraft is a freelance writer based in New York. She has written for New Scientist and DNAinfo and has produced podcasts for Scientific American's 60-Second-Science. She holds degrees from CUNY Graduate School of Journalism and the University of Illinois at Chicago. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure