MizunoCane ST, a white cane for the visually-impaired

Mizuno has commercialized the white cane, MizunoCane ST, for the visually-impaired.

The concept of the product is “a white cane that inspires users to go out,” which was developed based on dialogue among a diverse group of stakeholders, including both Mizuno and the general incorporated association PLAYERS, which lent its cooperation to Mizuno. Based on this concept, Mizuno leveraged the knowledge and technologies it has cultivated as a manufacturer of a wide range of sporting goods to create a white cane with easy-to-use functionality and a sporty design.

Before development began, Mizuno and PLAYERS conducted a questionnaire among 261 visually-impaired people on what they sought in white canes. It was revealed that people wanted “durability” and “lightness.” For durability, Mizuno made use of the carbon design and processing technologies it has cultivated in the development of golf club shafts to achieve both the strength and lightness required. Moreover, unlike conventional rigid canes,*1 Mizuno’s white cane adopts a design in which the diameter decreases toward the tip, making it as light as just 70 g, as opposed to other conventional shafts, which weigh around 100 g.

*1 Canes without joints

As for its appearance, it was designed with a vivid blue color extending from the tip toward the center of the shaft for a brisk and refreshing look in response to requests from visually-impaired people for something “stylish” and “different from other people’s.” We hope that the cane will give rise to new opportunities for communication. The cane has been wrapped in a decorative film,*2 which also suppresses CO2 emissions compared to conventional coatings and printing.

*2 Method in which a dedicated film is wrapped directly around the shaft

MizunoCane ST also comes with a service for transporting users to their destinations by taxi if their canes were to break while they are out, in the hope that more visually-impaired people will “want to take it with them whenever they go out.”

Mizuno will continue to use sports technologies to realize a dynamic world in which all people lead more active lives.