Welcome to the website of the Technology for Injury Prevention in Seniors (TIPS) program.

TIPS is a unique university-community partnership for developing new technologies to prevent falls and fall-related injuries in older adults. We are funded by the AGE-WELL National Centre for Excellence (NCE), and by the Canadian Institute for Health Research (CIHR) through the Emerging Teams in Mobility in Aging and Strategic Teams in Applied Injury Research programs.

Everyone experiences a fall now and then. While most falls do not cause serious injury, occasionally we are reminded of how even a simple fall from standing can be catastrophic. Indeed, falls from standing height are the most common cause of injury-related hospitalizations across the lifespan. 

Falls are especially devastating among older adults, as the cause of over 90% of hip fractures and wrist fractures, and 60% of head injuries in this population. Approximately 20% of hip fracture patients die within a year, and 50% will not return to their pre-fracture level of mobility and independence.

TIPS uses innovative approaches (such as video capture and wearable sensors) to determine the causes and circumstances of falls of older adults. We also develop and test the effectiveness of engineering interventions such as protective clothing and compliant flooring in reducing fall-related injuries.

We invite you to explore our website to learn more about this innovative program.

The above video is based on a 2009 Discovery Channel episode highlighting TIPS research on fall injury prevention.


Lab contact information: 

Injury Prevention and Mobility Laboratory 
Room K8508 
Simon Fraser University 
8888 University Drive 
Burnaby, BC, Canada 
V5A 1S6 
Telephone: 778.782.6679 
Fax: 778.782.3040

Recent News

On November 10th 2017, IPML researchers Stephen Rovinovitch, Yijian Yang, Olivia Aguiar, Monina Catotal and Brigitte Potvin led a 60 minute oral session at the Fraser Health Patient Experience Conference, titled "From the Bench to the Clinical Environment: New Directions in Fall and Injury Prevention.” The talk covered video capture of how falls occur in long term care, the development of new exercise programs for seniors in assisted living focusing on upper limb strength, and injury prevention through compliant flooring and hip protectors. Also, IPML trainee Chantel Galang presented her work titled "Effect of Age on Heart Rate and Heart Rate Variability during Activities of Daily Living" during the poster session.

On October 19-21 2017, Yijian Yang from the IPML presented his research on “Sex difference on the circumstances of falls” at the Canadian Association on Gerontology (CAG) conference in Winnipeg. IPML trainee Chantel Galang's work was also featured in the poster session with her research titled "Effect of Age on Heart Rate and Heart Rate Variability during Activities of Daily Living". Recent PhD graduate of the lab, Alex Korall (now a postdoctoral at U Manitoba), won the award for best poster in the doctoral and post-doctoral category for her PhD work titled “The effectiveness of hip protectors to reduce risk of hip fracture in residents of 14 long-term care homes.” Congrats Alex! Click here to see their posters (AlexChantel).

On October 17-19th 2017, IPML researchers Stephen Robinovitch, Bobbi Symes, Brigitte Potvin and Karam Elabd participated in the AGE-WELL conference in Winnipeg showcasing their work on analyzing the circumstances of falls in older adults, hip protector design and compliant flooring during the poster session, scientific talks, and the “Drinks and Demos” event. Click here for highlights.

This summer two new graduate students and an exchange student from Japan joined the IPML team - Natalie Shishov, PhD candidate in Biomedical Physiology and Kinesiology, Karam Elabd, MASc candidate in Engineering Science and Tomomi Yamamoto, MASc student in Mechanical Engineering at Tottori University in Japan. Welcome to the lab!

In June 2017, TIPS researchers Andreas Ejupi, Omar Aziz, Yijian Yang, Kim van Schooten and Stephen Robinovitch presented their various projects titled "Similarity of repeated falls in older people: do past falls predict the circumstances of future events?", "Successful landing during a fall: Video evidence of the strategies used by older adults in long-term care to avoid head impact during real-life falls", "Evidence from Video Capture of the Characteristics of Falls Leading to Hip Fracture in Older Adults in Long-Term Care" and "Digging into data: What sensor signals from from real-world falls can tell us." at the International Society of Posture and Gait Research (ISPGR) World Congress in Florida, USA. 

In May 2017, TIPS researchers Yijian Yang and Kim van Schooten presented their work on the role of recreation therapy programs on the mobility of older adults in long-term care at the BC Care Providers Association (BCCPA) 40th annual conference in Whistler, BC. The BCCPA represents many providers of community care for seniors in the province. More details on the BCCPA and their conference can be found here.

On June 6, 2017, Mosaic published an article on falls featuring TIPS. Mosaic is an online publication on the science of life, produced by the Wellcome Trust, a UK-based charitable organization that funds over £5 billion in health research annually. TIPS director Stephen Robinovitch was interviewed in Mosaic’s feature story, ‘How to fall to your death and live to tell the tale’ by Neil Sternberg, published June 6, 2017. See the story here. Mosaic also produced a short video to accompany the story with some interesting statistics and footage from SFU-TIPS. See the video here.