WAEWAE TECH is an R&D university grown start-up.

It is common knowledge that footwear has a direct impact on our health in many ways[1,2,3]. Quality footwear is important to assure long-term health and prevent several injuries, such as spinal stress fractures[4], joint pains[5], ankle sprains, and many other related foot/leg injuries[5,6]. Currently, shoes are a passive tool, failing to respond to a user’s context, such as to provide optimal workout performance that could counteract potential arising health issues. We are researchers that try to understand properties of the foot and explore new ways on how emerging wearable technology can offer benefits. Our mission is to drive foot-related research and to share our gained knowledge.

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Denys J.C. Matthies, Founder and CEO

I am the CEO of WAEWAE TECH LIMITED and an Associate Professor for Mobile Applications at the Technical University of Applied Sciences Lübeck. Education-wise, I am an engineering scientist specializing in pattern recognition, sensing, and prototyping with wearable technology. Since the past eight years, I conducted a great variety of research projects, particularly with significant focus on foot interfaces. One of my achievements includes the development of the patented method of ground surface detection.

These are the Collaborators

Dr. Samitha Elvitigala

...is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Augmented Human Lab at the Auckland Bioengineering Institute, New Zealand. He explores novel wearable foot interfaces, such as insoles. His aim is to create smart footwear that understands physical conditions but also the user’s mental state, enabling assistive interventions to improve life style.

Dr. Kelly Sheerin

...is a Senior Lecturer, Manager of the Sports Performance Clinics located at AUT Millennium, and the President of the Auckland Branch of Sports Medicine New Zealand. In particular, Kelly is a sports scientist specializing in running injuries and biomechanics. His contribution lies in his valuable experience and important theoretical knowledge of human biomechanics.

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Stefan Seelecke

...is the Head of the intelligent Material Systems Lab - IMSL at the University of Saarland, Germany. Stefan provides know-how and research facilities in Germany. He supports the development of a series of high-fidelity wearable prototypes that has specific requirements, such as a high efficiency when being ready for use in field studies.

A summary of our Research Findings

Vibrotactile Feedback can alter Gait

Augmenting vibrotactile feedback under the foot has shown to impact gait, in particular Stance Time, which may be used to compensate gait asymmetries caused by Leg Length Discrepancy (LLD).
✎ Paper  ▸ Video

Feet Reflect Acute Stress

Acute stress can quickly occur throughout the day, even when performing office work at a desk. A machine learning approach can infer on acute stress by considering unique foot movements and foot postures.
✎ Paper  ▸ Video

Improving Body Posture

Solely visualizing the user’s center-of-pressure gathered from the user’s foot sole can significantly improve body posture for specific workout exercises.
✎ Paper1  ✎ Paper2  ▸ Video

Detecting Ground Surfaces

Identifying various terrains the user is walking on can be accomplished based on the capacitive ground coupling in conjunction with the user’s individual gait.
✎ Paper  ▸ Video

User Authentication by Shoe-Print

The shoes' specific outer sole in combination with the distinct wear created by the user’s individual gait can be used for user authentication.
✎ Paper

Distinguishing Users by Gait

A pressure sensitive insole can be used to uniquely distinguish users based on their individual gait.
✎ Paper  ▸ Video

Identifying Walking Styles

Machine learning can be used to identify different walking styles across a variety of individual users.
✎ Paper  ▸ Video

Foot Gesture Control

Explicit foot gestures can be seamlessly used to control smart devices and VR applications preventing other interaction channels from overburden.
✎ Paper1  ✎ Paper2  ▸ Video

Vibrotactile Feedback

Applying vibrotactile feedback at the foot can be used to convey minor-complex information, such as directional cues. This releases other interaction channels and showed to reduce stress.
✎ Paper

Thermal Feedback

Thermal feedback at the foot sole is barely perceivable as there is a natural adaption preventing the perception of temperature changes quickly.
✎ Paper

Increasing Immersion

Utilizing foot movement, such as walking-in-place, in VR for the purpose of locomotion can significantly increase the subjectively perceived immersion.
✎ Paper1  ▸ Video1
✎ Paper2 ▸ Video2

Ready to do something?

If you share our passion and like our foot-based research, you could contribute a little donation. This will help us to cover costs, such as conferences travels at which we present our research results. If you are an investor or a potential collaborator, please do not hesitate to get in touch!

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