Honda Motor Co. will begin leasing in November 2015 its Walking Assist Device to hospitals and rehabilitation facilities throughout Japan.
The robotic device is use for walking rehabilitation under the guidance of a doctor and/or therapist. It’s based on the inverted pendulum model, a theory of bipedal walking, and features two motors that help lift the leg at the thigh as it moves forward and backward. This lengthens the users stride and helps them walk further and faster.
The Walking Assist Device measures the walking patterns and training status of each user on a tablet, creating visualizations to assist medical personnel. The belt-like design makes it easier for users to put on and off, and its adjustable frames help it fit on anyone.
The Walking Assist Device features three training modes:
Following mode: The Walking Assist Device influence the user’s walking motions based on the walking pattern of the user
Symmetric mode: Based on the walking patterns of the user, the Walking Assist Device influences the user to achieve bilaterally symmetric motions such as bending and extending both legs
Step mode: The Walking Assist Device influence the user’s steps repeatedly to recover the rocker functions* which enable the smooth shifting of weight
The Walking Assist Device has been in development since 1999. With the help of about 50 medical facilities throughout Japan since 2013, a limited number of the Walking Assist Device have been used, helping Honda refine the device throughout the years.