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The present invention relates to a device that is weighted and securable to a limb of a body to assist in strengthening the limb to which it is connected. While the present invention refers to a finger weight it can be used to strengthen muscles or tendons in other parts of the body such as wrists or forearms.
While there have been a number of other devices used to strengthen arms and fingers such as disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 757,041 to Hasfeld, Design Pat. Nos. 384, 381 and 362,701 and recent U.S. Pat. No. 6,413,193. They do not provide a device that permits quick and easy assembly, disassembly and retention of weights within the device nor an effective design for relieving finger pressure and improving circulation.
The simple and efficient design forming applicant's invention can be quickly and easily attached and detached to the limb that is to be strengthened. Also weights can be quickly and easily inserted and removed swiftly to readily adjust the forces imposed on the limb. The ease with which the device can be modified makes it very adaptable to be used when doing a variety of tasks such as walking, typing, exercising, bicycling, etc.
In accordance with one embodiment of the invention there is illustrated a finger weight device that is an integral unit that includes a finger receiving opening defined between an upper body portion and depending lower interlocking generally triangular flexible finger portions. The flexible finger portions enable the device to handle fingers of various sizes. The receiving opening can be made larger and designed to accommodate wrists, forearms, etc. of varying sizes by flexing the flexible finger portions that vary the designed opening accordingly.
The device can be made of a variety of plastics or other suitable materials.
The integral body portion is formed in its upper section with longitudinally extending cylindrical openings to receive weights that enable the device to perform its strengthening function when the limb to which it is attached is moved or flexed. Separate cylindrical weights are located in the cylindrical openings and the walls of the openings include inwardly extending bumps to interact with grooves formed in the weights to positively locate them in place when the weights are positioned in their respective openings. The openings are located in a generally triangular configuration but this is by way of example only.
The intermediate portion of the body which forms the upper ring section between the weight openings and the flexible fingers define longitudinally extending grooves that relieve pressure on the fingers when located in the ring section and improve circulation.
To obtain a better understanding of the invention, reference is made to the accompanying drawings illustrating one embodiment of the invention in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an embodiment of applicant's invention;
FIG. 2 is a perspective view similar to FIG. 1 showing the weights inserted in position;
FIG. 3 is a bottom view of the subject embodiment;
FIG. 4 is a front view of the present invention without the weights;
FIG. 5 is a front perspective view of the embodiment shown in FIG. 1; and;
FIG. 6 is a perspective view of a weight used in the invention.
Referring now to FIG. 1 there is illustrated a unitary body 10 having a lower ring portion 12 and an upper generally triangular weight receiving section 14 including cylindrical openings 16, 18 and 20 that receive the weights 2.2.
The lower ring portion 12 includes an upper section 12A located below the triangular section 14 that is relatively rigid and defines longitudinal grooves 24 that relieve the pressure on the fingers when in place in the ring section and improve the circulation through the finger. These grooves are placed around substantially the upper half of the ring portion.
At the lower portion 12B of the ring section 12 and extending from both sides of the upper portion of the ring section 12A are flexible intertwining flexible fingers 26, 28. The fingers 26, 28 allow the device to handle varying sizes of fingers. The flexible abutting 26, 28 are generally triangular in shape to provide a relatively snug fit against the lower portion of the finger to assist in retaining the device in place relative to the finger.
Referring again to the upper generally triangular weight receiving portion 14 attention is directed to the cylindrical weights 22 that are designed to fit into the openings 16, 18, 20. These weights are formed with grooves 32 that are positioned to engage with bumps 34 extending inward from the wall of the cylindrical openings 16,18, 20. These bumps are shown in FIGS. 4 and 5. When the weights are inserted the bumps 34 will retain them in place during usage of the device. Grooves 36 located at the outer ends of the cylindrical weights 22 provide for ease of gripping the weights to facilitate insertion and removal relative to the weight openings.
As previously mentioned a finger weight is illustrated and described but the device can be made any size desired to accommodate a wrist, an arm, etc.
With respect to the various features of the device the rods can be of any desired shape such as triangular, rectangular, etc. in which case the openings would be designed to accommodate the weight to be used. Obviously, the weights could be made of a variety of materials, i.e., plastic, etc. and any length to provide the weight that is most effective to accomplish the result desired. Similarly, the ratio of ring diameter to band length is not limited to that illustrated.
It is intended to cover by the appended claims all features and characteristics that fall within the true spirit and scope of the invention.