Seat means elderly can take a well-earned rest from exercise

The elderly population is growing at a rapid rate, and to keep healthy and mobile they need to do regular light exercise such as walking. However, the elderly often need to break their walks up into manageable distances with small intervals to rest – an issue that can sometimes prove to be problematic.

Nichola Trudgen, a student in her fourth and final year studying for a Bachelor of Industrial Design at Massey University in Auckland, New Zealand, has developed a novel seat that could help.

Her so-called Wanderest seat, which could easily attach to existing circular or octagonal lamp posts situated around rest homes and retirement villages, has been shortlisted for this year’s 2010 James Dyson Award.

The seats themselves can be installed at a perching height and attached either directly with a bolt or clamped onto lamp posts with a steel strap. Lamp posts were chosen as a base for the seat to be installed on as they are usually placed at equal intervals along a footpath.

But the seats could also be depolyed in areas where the elderly have to wait for short periods of times, such as banks and hospitals.

The panels of the Wanderest seats themselves are injection moulded from a recycled wood plastic composite material, which is durable, cheap and rot-resistant.