GlideWear™ Technology | Tamarack Habilitation Technologies, Inc.

GlideWear™ Technology

GlideWear is a patented silk-like two-layer knit material designed to protect skin and soft tissue from the effects of rubbing/friction. The very slippery, low-friction interface (CoF, 0.2) between the two fabric layers of GlideWear protects the wearer from the friction forces which are the major factor responsible for soft tissue damage such as foot blisters, ulcers and bed sores.

GlideWear is made from a very light-weight Lycra knit material that stretches to fit closely, conforming to body contours. It is not intended to function as a compression garment.  GlideWear is typically utilized as a patch or a component of clothing, footwear and/or support surface covers coming in forceful contact with body surfaces. It is strategically included as a discreet panel sewn into or onto only those locations which are known or expected to experience damaging levels of friction/rubbing.

Friction is the aspect of rubbing which does damage by applying excessive traction-type forces to the skin surface. These cause damaging shear distortion of skin and soft tissue layers. GlideWear will typically reduce friction forces by 50% to 80%.

GlideWear is bi-elastic and gas-and-vapor-permeable. 

For more material information, please contact info@tamarackhti.com

Current GlideWear™ status

In September 2019, Tamarack sold the intellectual property for GlideWear to the Swedish company MIPS.  Tamarack continues to use GlideWear under license from MIPS for Orthotic & Prosthetic, wheelchair surfaces (sublicensed to PermobilUS), for the Tamarack FlexForm Custom Seating System, and for other specialty applications (EB and burn garments).

Torbot Jobskin continues to use GlideWear as an option for custom compression garments. 

Prosthetic Liner Patch with GlideWear™ Technology for Lower-Limb Amputees

The Prosthetic Liner Patch uses the patented GlideWear™ Technology to protect skin and strategically reduce the friction that causes hotspots and sores. Prosthetic Liner Patches absorb shear to protect amputees’ skin where it comes into contact with the prosthetic liner.

  • Get immediate relief from rubbing at painful points your residual limb comes into contact with your prosthesis.
  • Designed exclusively for below the knee (trans-tibial) amputees who are experiencing friction/shear-induced pain, redness, soreness, or rubbing on their residual limb.
  • Silk-like, two-ply breathable fabric prevents moisture and heat buildup against the skin. Stays in place all day long. Patented technology reduces friction 50-80% and protects skin.
  • Easy to use, durable, and machine washable. Just toss it in the wash with your other laundry. As seen in Amplitude magazine.
  • Works with most gel or silicone prosthetic liners. Sold 2 patches per package.
  • Also great for targeted skin protection for kids with epidermolysis bullosa.

Available to professionals through O&P industry suppliers. To see a list,

Available to consumers through Ithaca Sports.

To use your Prosthetic Liner Patch

  1. Place the patch against the area of concern. If the skin is broken, be sure to clean and cover appropriately with a wound dressing to support proper wound healing.
  2. Roll up your liner as usual, over the patch and your limb, taking care to ensure the patch does not fold over itself as the liner is rolled into position.
  3. Use your prosthesis as usual.

Above-Knee Amputee Prosthetic Brim Sheath with GlideWear™ Technology

Say goodbye to socket discomfort and skin breakdown for good! The Above-Knee Prosthetic Brim Sheath uses  patented GlideWear™ technology to protect skin and reduce the friction that causes hotspots and sores. The brim sheath reduces friction at the socket brim to protect amputees’ skin where it comes into contact with their prosthesis. It’s designed for use with any pin suspension or seal-in liner. By reducing friction (50-80%), the silk-like two ply GlideWear fabric protects against hotspots, blisters, sores and other skin irritation when used daily.

  • Get lasting protection from painful rubbing where your brim comes into contact your skin at the socket brim. Designed for above-the-knee (trans-femoral) amputees.
  • Two-ply silk-like breathable fabric prevents moisture and heat buildup against the skin. Patented technology reduces friction and protects skin.
  • Use the brim sheath to protect the skin where it exits the socket at the brim. Use with any pin suspension or seal-in liner.
  • Easy to use and machine washable. Just toss it in the wash with your other laundry.
  • Providers have suggested HCPCS Code L8410(Rachel, please format this the same way as PLP’s section) Available exclusively through industry suppliers and licensed Orthotic-Prosthetic healthcare providers. To see a list,

How to Use Your Prosthetic Brim Sheath

Size Chart

  • SMALL: GW-KRS-S / Small (S/P) / Socket circumference: 14-18” (35-45 cm)
  • MEDIUM: GW-KRS-M / Medium (M) / Socket circumference: 18-22” (46-55 cm)
  • LARGE: GW-KRS-L / Large (L/G) / Socket circumference: 22-30” (56- 76 cm)
  • EXTRA-LARGE: GW-KRS-XL / Extra Large (XL/XG) / Socket circumference: 30-40” (77-101 cm)

Tamarack Socks with GlideWear™ Technology

GlideWear Socks are crew height and available in white or black. They are designed for protecting specific locations on the feet:

  • Forefoot protection (diabetic neuropathy)
  • Heel and Ankle (primarily for someone in bed for long periods)
  • Midfoot protection (diabetic neuropathy – such as for the common Charcot foot)
  • Partial foot, especially for metatarsal amputations (diabetic neuropathy)

Tamarack Underwear and Shorts with GlideWear™ Technology

Underwear/shorts designed specifically for the fit and function of the wheelchair user with a spinal cord injury.

  • GlideWear Underwear (mens) and Shorts (womens) are NOT the same as biking/sports shorts which have a different fit and design and do not deliver a strategic low friction interface zone.

Friction causes shear stress and strain in the load bearing tissue of wheelchair and prolonged bed users leading to increased risk of skin trauma – both at the surface and in deep tissues. There are currently very few interventions addressing friction and shear available for clinicians and users. An intervention must not only be effective at reducing/controlling friction (which causes the shear stress/strain, but must be practical and easy to use for clinicians and consumers. 

Movements associated with performing any activity, whether in bed or sitting in a chair, are not only unavoidable, they are often desirable and necessary. These “micro movements” should be recognized as contributors to shear stresses and strains (tissue distortion) throughout the day. The consumer would benefit from an intervention that increases skin safety by reducing friction in the at risk areas which causes potential for skin damage from shearing. 

A physically active consumer will find themselves in multiple situations and various locations – not just in bed or their primary wheelchair, but in other seating/function locations or support structures such as standing frames, motor vehicle seats, furniture, and sports and recreational equipment. A perfect seat support surface is necessary and beneficial while sitting in the wheelchair, but is not available in these alternate places. The “perfect seat” may manage pressure well, but if it does not have a targeted friction reducing interface incorporated into the cover, it will not be as safe as if it did.

Transfers increase the risk of skin damage from shearing. No wheelchair user can be expected to perform perfect transfers 100% of the time. Small bumps and scrapes can occur during transfers – occasionally in the best cases, frequently in difficult cases – which gradually accumulate and increase the risk of damaging the skin.  Standing frames and multiple position wheelchairs, such as recliners and sit-to-stand chairs, offer many benefits for consumers. Most modern equipment offering these variable positions have designs to reduce the shearing which is unavoidable during position changes. However shear stresses remain when the consumer is weight bearing against the support surface because the joint axes of the equipment simply cannot match the alignment of the anatomical skeletal joint locations and duplicate their movements closely enough. Small traumas which accumulate from micro-movements, positioning changes and the inevitable bumps and scrapes during transfers can be minimized or avoided by incorporating simple friction management strategies. This presentation demonstrates a friction management technology and how incorporating strategically placed low friction interfaces directly into garments, such as underwear and socks, can provide skin protection wherever/ whenever the consumer needs, without having to otherwise plan for or have independent devices constantly available.

Men’s (GW-UND)

Woman’s (GW-SHORT)

Epidermolysis Bullosa with GlideWear™ Technology

Epidermolysis bullosa (EB) is a rare condition in which the skin is so fragile that even the slightest bit of friction causes blistering, and even skin loss. According to Dystrophic Epidermolysis Bullosa Research Association of America (debra of America), there are 20,000 people in the US living with EB.

The GlideWear™ Technology is a patented, ultra-low-friction fabric that’s widely used in medical and sports applications where skin is at risk for injury caused by friction, shear, rubbing, and breakdown. It’s a two-layer fabric that protects skin by gliding smoothly against itself and absorbing the harmful friction and shear that can damage skin.

GlideWear™ Technology is made in the USA by Tamarack Habilitation Technologies, winner of a 2015 Minnesota Manufacturing Award.