sto fin 2--.jpg

AREA

TYPE

PRODUCT

DURATION

LEG GUARD

Custom injury protection

for footballers.

Leg Guard improves current protection of weak points below the knee to prevent future injuries. It provides protection without interfering with the user's performance. Additionally, it allows for the possibility of easily customizable padding. This option allows the user to personalize their protective gear as they see fit. 

Soft Goods

Athletic Apparel

Soccer Leg Guard

15 Weeks

MADE IN SAN JOSE

SPRING 2019

design

prototype

test

repeat

jannik-skorna-mY2ZHBU6GRk-unsplash (1).j

Injury Breakdown

Athletes who participate in soccer are more susceptible to below the knee injuries. This is due to the particular physical interactions of the sport and using equipment that does not provide enough protection for the user. In a study conducted by the NCAA, 65.3% of all injuries in women's soccer players affect the lower limbs.

repeat

test

prototype

design

 

1

Areas of Improvement

1  Pad Placement

Location and size of padded protection can interfere with the user's equipment and gear.

2  Overpadding

Users expressed a preference for optimizing padding to fit their needs and not adding it wherever there is space.

3  Foot Strap

Most leg guards have a fabric strap at the bottom to prevent the leg guard from moving up the leg. However, this fabric strap can bunch up causing discomfort.

based on user feedback and direct observation

*

IMG_2780_edited.jpg
IMG_2767_edited.jpg
71bysAZxthL_edited.jpg

1

2

3

 
IMG_1757 copy.jpg
storelli%20mockups_edited.jpg

Optimizing Pad Placement

*

After doing some early ideation for the leg guard, I began prototyping low-fidelity mockups with dish packing foam sheets and knee-high socks to quickly explore a wide-range of pad placement variations. The pliable foam sheets allowed me to easily cut out different pad shapes, pin them to the the sock, and observe how they would form to the user's leg.

 

MATERIAL TESTING

DIY Pressure Sensor

While I was refining the form of the leg guard, I needed to test materials for the padding itself. At the time we did not have access to any type testing equipment, but I was able to create pressure sensor with the help of a few of electrical engineers and electricians. I used the sensor to measure how much pressure each material would absorb at different weights.

IMG_2714_edited.jpg
fig. a
fig. b
fig. c
voltage meter
wires
pressure sensor

How it Works

Midterm presentation.jpg

1

1  Before Padding

Multiple pockets on leg guard can securely hold custom protective pads that would be placed by the user.

2  Insert Protective Pad

Users can insert protective pads for extra protection and to the extent needed.

user interaction with leg guard

*

Midterm presentation.jpg

2

 
IMG_34lll89.jpg
storelli_icon_2.png

initial pocket prototype

initial protection prototype

*

*

TESTING PROTOTYPES

IMG_3506-01.jpg

refined pocket prototype

refined protection prototype

*

*

storelli_icon_2.png

Prototype Refinement

After user testing with the initial prototype, I learned that it was difficult to insert a longer piece into the pockets especially since it needed to wrap around the leg. As a result, I minimized the size of the pads and focused them towards the ankle. As well as securing the lower calf padding on to the leg guard.

001

002

003

004

sprint across field

dribble across field

pass the ball

scrimmage with teammates

list of user tasks

*

USER TESTING

P2_image4_Baltazar_Natalia.jpg

LEG GUARD

Final Product

Through various methods of ergonomic testing and prototype refinements, I was able to develop a leg guard that allows users to customize their own lower limb protection, placing this protection where they need it avoiding over-padding and uncomfortable placement that interferes with the user's performance.

Untitledfinnnnn.jpg
Insert Pad into Pocket
sto%20fin%202_edited.jpg

1  Polyethylene Foam

Utilized for protective padding due to its ability to absorb a large amount of pressure while maintaining a small thickness.

2  Breathable Mesh Fabric

Users can insert protective pads

for extra and to the extent needed.

265FE91A-A2CA-4A38-87E2-0E2EE15E1A5D.png

POST-TEST QUESTIONNAIRE

Untitled design (5) copy 9.png
Untitled design (5) copy 7.png
001.png

40%

60%

80%

80% of users strongly agree that the leg guard padding is lightweight.

60% of users strongly disagree that the leg guard padding interferes with their performance on the field.

40% of users agree that the leg guard padding is too bulky.

storellisplash.jpg
smlllogo_edited_edited.png
by
natalia
baltazar