Exercise mat for older people bags Future Perfect Award

An interactive exercise mat and storybook for older people has won first prize in a competition to design products for an ageing population.

University of Brighton 3D design student Harry Trimble scooped the Designing for the Future £1000 cash prize for his mat, which changes colour where pressure is applied. The mat and accompanying book are intended to encourage older people to exercise and to play with small children.

Trimble claims to have taken inspiration from observing people in their 50s and 60s playing with toddlers.

The competition was organised by the University of Brighton and The Future Perfect Company, whose founder Philippa Aldrich describes the winning design as ‘challenging how we think about older people and what we expect their lifestyles to be like’.

Other entries in the competition included a hearing aid designed to look like a piece of jewellery, ergonomic bowls and trays, and a circular wooden pill box.

Aldrich adds that Trimble’s product stood out because ‘it was inspired by looking at the needs of the customer group first, rather than reworking an existing product’.

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