Traditional methods of warding off muggers – pepper spray, self-defense classes, whistles – work well, but an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. That’s the concept behind this bizarre neck accessory. It encourages women to improve their posture and walk with their heads up, habits that have been shown to keep muggers away.
The idea is that if a woman walks hunched over or with her head down, a mugger will take that body language as a sign of weakness. Some studies suggest that walking with more confidence can keep women safe, and the PosturAroma necklace, designed by a group of University of Amsterdam students, works on that principle. The weird furry necklace has an accelerometer on the back near its clasp. The necklace can sense when the wearer is hunching or walking with her head down, and corrects the posture with a spritz of aroma.
More about the science behind this invention, via the designers:
“Body posture can have a big influence on the feeling of safety as the attacker chooses the most vulnerable victim that is present (Foncke 2002: p.22). This is done during the selection phase. In general, this is the one with the most insecure, vulnerable body posture. Research has been done on who victim convicts in prison in California choose when they are presented with pictures of girls. Nearly every one of them chose the girls with the vulnerable body posture and charisma: looks, age and sexy clothes did not affect their choice (Foncke 2002: p.22). When there is only one possible victim, the perpetrator will start with the second phase immediately, which consists of testing the victim. This is when the perpetrator will further find out whether the girl or woman is an obedient victim. He will make eye contact to find out whether the woman becomes insecure or confused. He can also try to flatter or intimidate her in order to show her his superiority. The woman’s reaction will influence the attacker’s final decision to attack her or not. If she shows the attacker that she does not feel intimidated or scared, the attacker will stop trying.”