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TOFI: Tongue Fitness through Wearable Technology and Interaction Strategies

Exploring the novel technology based on material innovation, this project will explore novel interactive modalities by the means of tongue movement.

Adequate sleep is a key part of a healthy lifestyle and is essential for your mind’s fitness. However, every second person worldwide is affected by sleep-disordered breathing and in more than 30% correlated to a lack of tongue muscle control. With this project, we are developing a personalized and interactive tongue fitness (TOFI) therapy. We will develop a unique ultra-thin pressure-sensor as a tactile interface between the tongue and a smartphone app. Integrated into personalized clear aligners, the "TOFI trainer” will be sensitive to the tongue’s position and force. This enables the patient to interact using the tongue. The envisioned interactive myofunctional motor skills training will be able to increase strength and subconscious control of the tongue at night, while also providing motivating and fun interaction. Thus, this project is a significant puzzle piece to prospectively prevent chronic snoring and light sleep apnea ensuring self-esteem and vitality as prerequisites for adolescent’s development and quality of life of adults and in age. At the same time, it allows us to develop novel interactive modalities exploring the use of the tongue.


Karmen Franinovic
Research 2020

Partners: Empa (Dominik Bachmann), dem Universitätsspital Basel (Florian Thieringer) und dem Uni Basel SpinOff Bottmedical (

Funding: Innosuisse