This ski exoskeleton prototype could soon become a common sight on the slopes.
Created by startup Roam Robotics, it’s essentially a wearable with “intelligent shock absorbers” that will markedly improve your safety and comfort while skiing.
The ski exoskeleton consists of leg braces that connect to a backpack. Air-filled bladders inflate or deflate automatically in sync with the wearer’s movements, absorbing mechanical shocks and removing strain from muscles. The exoskeleton also connects to an iOS or Android app that controls torque level, switches between autonomous or manual modes, and, of course, displays performance metrics.
Roam Robotics first developed it in 2015 to assist soldiers and help those with impaired mobility, moving the project towards winter sports early last year. Since June, the ski/snowboard exoskeleton was tested on indoor slopes in the US and in a Japanese resort.
According to the testimonials on the official website, it works pretty great!
“I felt the power and energy as I held the edge on turns – which is what makes skiing fun for me“, said one of the testers.
If you’d like to try it, you can place a reservation for $99. Of course, it’s an exoskeleton and that doesn’t come cheap, so be prepared to shell out $2000-$3000 when it releases in early 2019. If you also get the one that turns into a chair, you won’t be Iron Man but you’ll definitely achieve maximum comfort!