Test of swedish anti-skid devices on five different slippery surfaces

Accid Anal Prev. 2001 Jan;33(1):1-8. doi: 10.1016/s0001-4575(00)00002-6.


The interest for effective preventive strategies for slips and falls is growing. Much remains to be done, however, to prevent slips and falls in the traffic environment. Some pedestrians are injured because of slippery pavements and roadways. Using an appropriate anti-skid device may reduce the risk of slips and falls on different surfaces outdoors during winter. The aim of this study was to evaluate new anti-skid devices on the Swedish market representing three different designs of anti-skid devices; heel device, fore-foot device and whole-foot device on different slippery surfaces, gravel, sand, salt, snow and ice. The evaluations were done according to subject's perceived walking safety and balance, videorecordings of walking postures and movements, time to take on and off each anti-skid device, advantages/disadvantages with each anti-skid device and a list of priority for own use according to three criteria; safety, balance and appearance. Practical tests were carried out on different slippery surfaces, gravel, sand, salt, snow and ice. The subject's were randomly selected from the registered population over 55 years in a city in northern Sweden. The results showed that eight or more of the ten subjects perceived all four anti-skid devices as fairly good or good regarding walking safety and balance when walking on gravel, sand, and salt. Anti-skid device 3, a whole-foot device was perceived as having none or bad walking safety and balance on snow by seven subjects and anti-skid device 4, a heel device, as having none or bad walking balance on ice by all ten subjects. Eight subjects walked with a normal muscle function in the hip and knee with all anti-skid devices on all surfaces. Small deviations in walking posture and movements were noted in one to two subjects when walking on different surfaces, but no systematic difference between the devices. Anti-skid device 1 'Rewa', a fixed heel device, was perceived as the most rapid one to take on. All four devices were perceived as easy to use and as giving good foothold. Anti-skid device 1 'Rewa' and 4 'Thulin-spike', both heel devices, had the highest priority according to walking safety. 'Rewa' also had the highest priority according to walking balance as well as own use. When combining the criterias 'Rewa' had the highest priority according to walking safety and balance, priority for own use, time to take on and easiness to use.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Accidental Falls / prevention & control*
  • Accidents, Traffic / prevention & control*
  • Aged
  • Equipment Design
  • Ergonomics
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Ice
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Movement
  • Postural Balance
  • Protective Devices*
  • Shoes*
  • Sweden
  • Technology Assessment, Biomedical
  • Walking / injuries*


  • Ice