Walking in a (simulated) winter environment

IMG_3208I just wrapped up two fascinating days of research at the Challenging Environment Assessment Laboratory (aka CEAL), part of Toronto Rehab’s iDAPT Centre. The lab, a world leader in rehabilitation research, is home to dozens of projects aimed at making our streets, homes and workplaces safer. One of its goals is help prevent injuries before they happen, to help people remain active. Naturally, I was most interested in research into how to increase and improve mobility among healthy adults, the elderly and people with disabilities — specifically, how to help keep us walking. One of CEAL’s “pods” is WinterLab (above), where researchers can test how different types of footwear perform in icy and snowy conditions. The work underway here is part of a broader health care trend: reducing demand on the system and long-term costs by investing in the development of new strategies and products right now.

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