A forearm crutch incorporating sensor technology has been developed by engineers from the University of Southampton.
The crutch is fitted with three accelerators that detect movement and force sensors that measure the weight being applied to a patient's leg to ensure the walking aids are being used correctly.
Data is transmitted wirelessly to a remote computer so that the patient can learn from his or her mistakes, using low-cost sensor technology that is similar to that used by the Nintendo Wii.
Professor Neil White of the university's school of electronics and computer science said the devices will aid people in physiotherapy who may be using their crutches incorrectly.
"Until now, there has been no way to monitor this, even though repeated incorrect use of the crutch could make the patient's injury worse," he commented.
The University of Southampton recently invested £3 million in the UK's most powerful university-owned supercomputer, which contains more than 8,000 processors.