Carry-Na: Good Design Comes to the Seniors Set



all images by Dave Pinter of PSFK

I did not photograph the Carry-na because at the time, I couldn't really think of a green angle; reading Dave Pinter in PSFK has made me reconsider. It is a reinvention of the clunky walkers that help seniors get around, but it looks sleek and folds flat.Katsumi Takeno told me that women have no problem with walkers, but men are embarrassed to be seen with them. Takano HeartWorks Company redesigned the walker so that it would look slick enough that a man might use it.

Perhaps it is different in Japan; my 90 year old mom would not be caught dead with a walker, but might think this is a cool enough design to consider. Certainly as the baby boomer cohort gets more fragile they will demand good looks and slick functionality, just like they now wear multi-coloured hearing aids instead of pretending they don't exist.

Dave at PSFK described its functions really well:

It is essentially made of two components, a handle and a pair of legs with wheels. But it simply, and rather magically transforms between three different uses. First, with the legs extended and the handle angled back, the Carry-na is in walker mode. The handle can telescope up or down to match the users height. There are also dual brake levers for control and simple locking clips to stabilize the walker.

Second, with a press of the foot pedal, the handle folds up vertically and a seat flips down. The handle serves as a backrest for users wanting to take a rest.

One more press of the foot pedal and the legs fold vertically for storage. A really clever bit of engineering is the way the front of the leg becomes the foot the Carry-ha rests on.


More at PSFK.

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Tags: Appliances | ICFF/ New York Design Week | Japan

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