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Publication numberWO1994009858 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberPCT/CA1993/000457
Publication date11 May 1994
Filing date4 Nov 1993
Priority date4 Nov 1992
Publication numberPCT/1993/457, PCT/CA/1993/000457, PCT/CA/1993/00457, PCT/CA/93/000457, PCT/CA/93/00457, PCT/CA1993/000457, PCT/CA1993/00457, PCT/CA1993000457, PCT/CA199300457, PCT/CA93/000457, PCT/CA93/00457, PCT/CA93000457, PCT/CA9300457, WO 1994/009858 A1, WO 1994009858 A1, WO 1994009858A1, WO 9409858 A1, WO 9409858A1, WO-A1-1994009858, WO-A1-9409858, WO1994/009858A1, WO1994009858 A1, WO1994009858A1, WO9409858 A1, WO9409858A1
InventorsEdward J. Green, Gerald R. Kendall, Gregory C. Meimaroglou, Carlos Ferrari
ApplicantSport Specific Inc.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: Patentscope, Espacenet
Exercising apparatus
WO 1994009858 A1
Abstract
An exercising apparatus especially suited for use in simulating ice skating. The apparatus has a standard (16) at the front end with a handle (18) mounted on the top of the standard. Towards the rear are two tracks (28) arranged in a rearwardly opening V. Two foot pad assemblies (30) are supported on respective ones of the tracks by wheels (46) mounted directly under the foot pads so as to carry most of the body weight of a user. The two foot pad assemblies (30) are linked by a common cable (54) that runs over a pulley system (56, 58, 60). Movement of the foot pads displaces part of the pulley system (58) against the force of a gas spring (68), which is adjustably mounted to provide for varying resistance to movement.
Claims  (OCR text may contain errors)
1. An exercising apparatus comprising: standard means projecting upwardly at a front end of the apparatus; handle means on the standard means for engagement with the hands of a user; two foot pad assemblies; foot pad guidance means linking the foot pad assemblies to the frame means for constraining the foot pad assemblies to travel along two paths diverging in a direction away from the standard means; and foot pad support means supporting the foot pad assemblies for movement along the respective paths.
2. An apparatus according to Claim 1 including resistance means for resisting movement of the foot pad assemblies along the paths, away from the standard means.
3. An apparatus according to Claim 3 wherein the foot pad support means include two tracks spaced rearwardly from the standard and at a position below the handle means, the tracks diverging in a direction away from the standard means.
4. An apparatus according to Claim 3 wherein the foot pad support means further comprise wheels mounted on the foot pad assemblies for supporting the assemblies on the tracks.
5. An apparatus according to Claim 3 wherein each track includes a top support surface and the foot pad support means comprise wheels mounted on the foot pad assemblies to engage the respective support surfaces, the foot pad guidance means comprising, for each foot pad, an arm carrying the foot pad and two links connecting the arm to the apparatus to guide movement of the foot pad along the respective path.
6. An apparatus according to Claim 5 wherein the wheels are mounted for rotation on fixed axes substantially perpendicular to the respective foot pad paths.
7. An apparatus according to Claim 2 wherein the resistance means comprise a cable connected to both foot pad assemblies and cable tensioning means for tensioning the cable.
8. An apparatus according to Claim 7 wherein the cable tensioning means comprise pulley means engaging the cable, pulley mounting means mounting the pulley means for movement on the apparatus, and means for biasing the pulley means for movement in a direction to tension the cable.
9. Apparatus according to Claim 8 wherein the pulley mounting means comprise a lever having a fixed fulcrum on the apparatus and carrying the pulley means at a position spaced therefrom, the cable tensioning means comprising means for pivoting the lever about the fixed fulcrum.
10. Apparatus according to any one of Claims 7 to 9 wherein the cable tensioning means comprise spring means.
1 1. Apparatus according to Claim 9 wherein the cable tensioning means include spring adjustment means for adjusting the spring means.
12. Apparatus according to Claim 9 wherein the cable tensioning means comprise a spring, a first spring coupling means coupling the spring to the lever and second spring coupling means coupling the spring to a stationary part of the apparatus.
13. Apparatus according to Claim 12 including spring adjustment means for adjusting the position of the first spring coupling means with respect to the fixed fulcrum, so as to vary the moment exerted on the lever by the spring.
14. Apparatus according to any one of Claims 1 1 to 13 wherein the spring means comprises a gas spring.
15. Apparatus according to any preceding Claim wherein the foot pad assembly includes a support, a foot cup and a resilient pedestal supporting the foot cup on the support.
16. Apparatus according to Claim 4, 5 or 6 wherein the wheels are mounted under the foot pad assembly.
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

EXERCISING APPARATUS FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to exercise apparatus. BACKGROUND

The present invention is concerned especially with the provision of an exercise machine which can be used to stimulate and condition the body. One aspect of the invention relates to the provision of an apparatus that enables conditioning of those muscles used in such activities as ice skating and in-line roller skating, including the leg and groin muscles. In these and other activities, lateral movements of the body, especially the legs, are very important to generate the necessary propulsion. The legs are alternately driven rearwardly and to the side, while the foot is pronated, that is turned outwards (everted) and moved outwards (abducted) with a consequent rolling to the inside to provide the desired propulsive force. This movement is very different from running, jogging, skiing and many other types of activities that are simulated by conventional exercise machines. Some muscle groups, for example those in the groin area, are very difficult to condition.

Another aspect of the invention relates to the provision of a simple operating system for an exercise apparatus, suitable for use in resistance training, rehabilitation or aerobic training.

Earlier exercising devices are disclosed in Hague United States Patent 3,756,595, issued September 4, 1973, Walker United States Patent 4,915,373 issued April 10, 1990 and Green et al PCT

SUBSTITUTE SHEET Green et al PCT International Publication WO90/08572, published August 9, 1990. These are all especially designed for simulating ice skating.

Of these, the devices described in Hague and Green et al have two foot pads, each mounted on the free end of an arm that is in turn pivotally connected to the end of a second arm. The second arm is mounted on a frame of the apparatus by a second pivot. This double cantilever arrangement must be very robust in order to support the weight of a user and other forces applied on the apparatus. In each case, the resistance to leg movement is provided by two independent resistance cylinders, one for each leg. There is thus no coordination of the leg movements to provide a natural overall skating simulation.

In the Walker device, the apparatus is a bicycle type apparatus with a seat and two pedals that run in respective oval tracks. The pedals are tied together with a cable so that the two will work in coordination. The resistance to movement is applied only along one section of the track, where a brake pad projects into the track to retard movement of the foot pedal. This does not provide a true simulation of the leg movements in ice skating. The use of a bicycle type frame with a seat takes much of the load off the feet that would normally be applied during normal ice skating.

The present invention is concerned with an improved exercise apparatus. SUMMARY

According to the present invention there is provided an exercising apparatus comprising: frame means, including standard means projecting upwardly at a front end of the apparatus; handle means on the standard means for engagement with the hands of a user; two foot pad assemblies; foot pad guidance means linking the foot pad assemblies to the frame means for constraining the foot pad assemblies to travel along two paths diverging in a direction away from the standard means; and foot pad support means supporting the foot pad assemblies for movement along the respective paths.

For any exercise requiring power development, the apparatus includes resistance means for resisting movement of the foot pad assemblies along the paths away from the standard means.

Preferably, the foot pad guidance means includes two linkages connecting the respective foot pad assemblies to the frame. The foot pad support means may include two tracks spaced rearwardly from the standard and at a position below the handle means, the tracks diverging in a direction away from the standard means.

By using the foot pad support, much of the stress applied in the foot pad' guidance means, for example the double cantilever linkage arrangement of the prior art, is eliminated so that the apparatus can be manufactured in a much lighter weight and therefore less expensively than with the apparatus of the prior art. The foot pad support preferably includes a wheel mounted directly under each foot pad and riding on the top surface of the track. The two foot pad assemblies are preferably connected to opposite ends of a single cable that runs over a pulley mechanism in the apparatus. This coordinates the movements of the two feet. At the same time, a resistance means is associated with the cable so that a single resistance device, for example a gas spring, may be used in the device. The resistance means is preferably adjustable to vary the resistance to movement. BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

In the accompanying drawings which illustrate an exemplary embodiment of the present invention:

Figure 1 is a side view of an apparatus according to the present invention;

Figure 2 is a plan view of the apparatus of Figure 1 ;

Figure 3 is a plan view of the apparatus with the handle and resistance mechanism housing removed

Figure 4 is a side detail of the resistance and pulley mechanism;

Figure 5 is a view along line 5-5 of Figure 4;

Figure 6 illustrates a foot pad assembly;

Figure 7 is a plan detail of the resistance and pulley mechanism; and Figure 8 is a plan detail of the foot pad assembly, showing the foot pad in ghost line.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Referring to the accompanying drawings, and especially to Figures 1 and 2, there is illustrated an exercise apparatus 10 that has a base 12 including two rearwardly divergent base arms 14 and a centre beam 15 that projects to the rear from the junction of the two base arms. A standard 16 projects upwards and slopes slightly to the rear from the junction of the arms 14 and beam 15. At the top of the standard is a handle 18 that includes a base loop extending across the back of the standard and curving forwardly to convergent sides 22. At the front of the handle, the sides merge into an upright front loop 24. On each of the converging sides 22 is a cushion 25 that is configured to receive the forearms of a user of the apparatus when the sides of the front loop 24 are gripped by the hands. The overall handle 18 is quite versatile and may be gripped at any location around the handle by the hands so that most any posture may be used.

Within the handle 18 is an instrument console 26 for displays showing a user's activity level and the like. In that this type of display is known, it will not be described in further detail.

At the rear end of the centre beam 15 are two tracks 28 that diverge to the rear at an included angle somewhat smaller than that between the base arms 14. The tracks are constructed as shallow, inverted channels.

Positioned above each track, adjacent the point where it meets the centre beam 15, is a foot pad assembly 30. This is mounted on the end of an arm 32 which extends forwardly from the foot pad along the respective side of the centre beam 15. At its front end, the arm 32 is connected to a lateral link 34 by a pivot 36. The link 34 extends outwardly from the arm 32 and is in turn connected to the base arm 14 by a pivot 38. A second link 40 is connected to the arm 32 by a pivot 42 spaced along the arm from the pivot 36. The outer end of the link 40 is connected to the base arm 14 on the same side of the apparatus by a pivot 44. Thus, the base arm, the two links 34 and 40 and the arm 32 act as a four bar linkage guiding the movement of the arm 32 and thus the foot pad assembly 30.

Supporting the foot pad assembly on the associated track 28 is a wheel 46 (Figures 6 and 8) mounted on the end of the arm 32 with its axis 47 perpendicular to the path of travel 49 (Figures 3 and 8) of the foot pad.

The foot pad assembly itself is illustrated most particularly in Figures 6 and 8. As shown in those figures, the end of the arm 32 carries a foot pad support 48. Forwardly from the support is a resilient pedestal 50. This pedestal has its base supported on a flange 51 projecting to the inside of the arm 32. The pedestal slopes upwardly and outwardly to a position above the arm, where it is connected to the rigid base of a foot cup 52. The foot cup rotates on the pedestal and the pedestal flexes resiliently in order to accommodate normal pronation of the foot that will occur during movement of the foot to the rear and outwardly. Direct support of the foot cup is provided by the wheel 46 positioned beneath it, so that the links 34 and 40, and their pivots are not required to sustain a large cantilevered load. The foot pad support 48 limits the downward movement of the heel of the foot cup and supports the foot cup in the rest position while a user is mounting or dismounting the apparatus.

As illustrated most particularly in Figures 3, 4, 5 and 7, the apparatus includes a cable 54 wrapped under a pulley 56 mounted on the center beam 15, behind the standard 16. From the pulley 56, the cable extends upwardly around two coaxial pulleys 58 and then down around two additional pulleys 60 and thence to the ends 61 of the arms 32 (Figure 7). The two pulleys 60 are on axes that converge rearwardly so that the cables may diverge from the centre towards the ends of the arms (Figures 3 and 7).

The two pulleys 58 are mounted on opposite sides of a lever 64. The lever 64 extends rearwardly from the pulleys 58 to a fixed fulcrum 66 on inverted L-shaped frame 67 extending from the back of the standard 16 to the top of the centre beam 15. The lever 64 is supported by a self damping gas spring 68 that is connected to the centre beam 15 by a pivot 70 and extends upwardly to the lever. The spring 68 has a cross pin 72 on the end of its piston rod. The spring 68 is a compression spring that resists compression along a line of action 73, joining the pivot 70 and cross pin 72.

The cross pin engages in an arcuate slot 74 extending along the lever. The slot is a circular curve with its centre of curvature on the spring pivot 70, so that for any given position of lever 64, the spring compression and thus force will remain the same, regardless of the position of the cross pin in the slot. The cross pin 72 also carries a nut 76 engaged on a lead screw 78 extending along the top of the lever 64 and supported on the lever by bearings 80. The rear end of the lead screw is connected by a universal joint 82 to an adjustment knob 84 mounted on the back side of the frame 67. Rotating the knob 84 will drive the nut 76 along the lead screw and the cross pin 72 along the slot 74. This will adjust the distance between the line of action 73 of the spring 68 and the fulcrum 66. As this distance varies, the moment exerted by the spring 68 on the lever 64, acting to rotate the lever 64 upwardly about the fulcrum 66, will be varied proportionally. This moment is balanced by the moment exerted on the lever 64 by the cable 54 through pulleys 58. The pulleys 58 are at a fixed distance from the fulcrum 66, so that any change in the moment exerted by the spring 68 on the lever 64 is balanced by a change in the force exerted on the lever 64 by the cable 54. This force exerted by the cable 54 is derived from the force exerted by a user of the apparatus on a foot pad, connected to the cable through the associated arm 32. Consequently, adjusting the position of cross pin 72 along the slot 74 will adjust the amount of resistance to foot pad movement exerted by the spring.

The entire mechanism, including the spring, the lever and the pulleys, is enclosed in a housing 86 as illustrated most particularly in Figures 1 and 2.

With the apparatus arranged this way, the rest position is with both foot pads at the forward positions illustrated in Figures 1 and 2. If one of the foot pads is moved to the rear from this position, the cable 54 pulls down on the pulleys 58 and the lever 64 to compress spring 68, which resists this movement. If then the other foot pad is moved to the rear, this pulls on the cable, tending to draw the first foot pad forward while at the same time working against the resistance of the spring. As the foot pad assembly moves to the rear, the wheel traces the path shown in broken line in Figure 3 as controlled by the four bar linkage. At the same time, the foot is allowed to pronate. the pronation is the same as that which would occur normally in ice skating.

While one embodiment of the present invention has been described in the foregoing, it is to be understood that other embodiments are possible within the scope of the invention. Thus, for example, it is possible to construct the apparatus with the base arms, tracks and standard all pivotally connected so that the apparatus will collapse to a compact storage condition especially suited for domestic use. The illustrated embodiment of the apparatus uses the two tracks to support the foot pad assembly wheels, in some embodiments, these will not be necessary, as the wheels may run on a hard floor to provide adequate support for the foot pad assemblies. For aerobic training, the cable may be lengthened so that the foot pads may move in a coordinated way without acting against high resistance. In some embodiments for aerobics, the resistance may be omitted, and the foot movements will be coordinated with the cable or some equivalent mechanism. It is also to be understood that the specific components of the illustrated embodiment may be replaced with equivalent components without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. For example chains, belts, gears, electromagnetic resistance devices, friction resistance devices and other mechanisms may be used in other embodiments.

The invention is therefore to be considered limited solely by the scope of the appended claims.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
FR2569569A1 * Title not available
US3756595 *23 Apr 19714 Sep 1973G HagueLeg exercising device for simulating ice skating
US4183520 *9 Mar 197815 Jan 1980Chase Daniel FExercising device having operably interconnected primary and secondary pivot arms
US4733858 *23 May 198629 Mar 1988Lan Chuang SMulti-purpose exerciser
US4781372 *15 Apr 19871 Nov 1988Mccormack Patrick JIce-skating exercise device
US4915373 *26 Oct 198810 Apr 1990Walker Kevin WExercising machine for ice skating
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
WO2015120004A1 *4 Feb 201513 Aug 2015Boykin James DarrylExercise device
US5911650 *29 Sep 199715 Jun 1999Cox; Daniel AndrewIce skating simulator apparatus and method of using same
Classifications
International ClassificationA63B23/035, A63B21/008, A63B69/00, A63B23/04
Cooperative ClassificationA63B21/4047, A63B22/203, A63B21/0087, A63B22/0061, A63B21/00072, A63B23/0488, A63B69/0022, A63B22/0015
European ClassificationA63B22/00B, A63B22/00P8, A63B21/00F6L, A63B23/04E2
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