Type : Innovative Design

Partnership : L’École de Design Nantes Atlantique
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How, as a product designer, can I influence people run ?
My work lead was to easily start running thanks to the basis of learning.

The product
BREATHE IN is a learning tool that teaches abdominal breathing to the novice runner. It is made up of a silicone shell and a polypropylene base. Its shape is rounded and soft in order to bring back the swelling stomach during the abdominal breathing. Its components are an electric motor, an Arduino card, a blade, a battery, a printed circuit board and light-emitting diodes.

BREATHE IN has three breathing levels to gently teach the stomach respiration. During the inhalation cycle, the “stomach” of the product blows up and lights up gradually. During the exhalation cycle, BREATHE IN deflates and goes out gradually.

Thanks to this concept, the runner will be able to run avoiding shortness of breath whilst improving performance at the same time.

The context
People spend too much time sitting on a chair instead of doing physical exercise. The consequence on our health is terrible, especially when we know that sport has many benefits to reduce risk of cancer, improve our mental health or optimize our musculoskeletal system.

Running is an interesting sport for several reasons. It is cheap, accessible at any age, effective for a loss of weight, freedom of hours, wide range of places, etc.

How, can I motivate refractory people to run?
The running basis is essential to know how to run properly to avoid injuries. It is important to roll up the foot in the right way, adopt the good posture and find the breathing rhythm. My objective was to focus on the breathing learning process to help people to find their breathing rhythm and type.

Concept 1
The first concept is a connected object that allows people to find their perfect breathing rhythm according to their physiology. The idea is based on a pulse oxymeter, which calculates the amount of oxygen in the blood thanks to an infrared LED.

Concept 2
The second concept is an interior companion that teaches the abdominal breathing. That type of breathing allows the runner to calm down impulsiveness, reduce stress and to be positively effective on health and performance improvement. It also allows the user to handle his respiration to avoid stitches and shortness of breath.

The user-experience
I worked with users and professionals to make the project sustainable. A kinesiologist and a physiotherapist helped me and gave me precious advices. I have questioned people of all ages, tested my mock-ups on some novice runners and participated to some races. They helped me to approve some choices, work lead, etc.
Color Me Rad, Nantes.
mesure2Measure of the stomach distortion when the user inhales and exhales.
Test of the abdominal breathing on a user.

The researches
recherches formellesFormal researches and « dirty » mock-ups.dessins2

dessinsTechnical researches on the mechanism that inflates and deflates.

The mock-up
Mock-up, piece of foam turned by the use of lathe

© 2016 Julie Charrier