This was a submission into the 2012 Student Design Competition for the International Home+Houseware Show in Chicago. I was inspired to do this project by my mom, who has arthritis. Originally I wanted to make a handle that could be attached over existing handles to better aid people with arthritis. I realized that that was the wrong direction when I my research exposed me to the various attachments for everything and how this would just add to the clutter. I realized that the the problem is not with the existing products, however it was with the hand. This gave me the idea of a glove, much like a brace or prosthetic.
After exploring many different ideas to make it work, I came up with the idea to incorporate the Boa system into the glove, along with an Electromyograph Sensor. The Boa system has been used in snowboard bindings, athletic shoes, backpacks and more; proving itself as a durable device that could be used in the glove. The Electromyograph Sensor is a device that reads Myoelectric signals that are sent from the brain to nerves and muscles. This technology is currently being used in prosthesis devices and is showing promising results for future uses.
The Grip Glove would read myoelectric signals and control a motor that operates the Boa system. The cables in the glove would be pulled by the Boa system, taking the load from the joints and muscles in the hand. This would allow the user of the glove to grab objects that would otherwise cause them pain and discomfort. Hopefully the reduced inflation and wear on the joints would prevent damage in the future as well. In case of malfunction there is a release on the back of the glove that would disengage the motor, freeing the user.