Title:
SKI BOOT FOR GRINDING, SYSTEM AND METHOD OF USE THEREOF
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A solution for newschool skiing so as to more readily be able to “grind” is provided. A ski boot may include an outer shell that has an upper portion and a lower portion; a liner, configured to fit within the outer shell; a closure system, that is attached to either, or both of, the upper portion and the lower portion, configured to suitably close the ski boot around a foot; and at least one extended portion (e.g., “lip”), that extends laterally from a side of the boot, configured to receive a rail, and further configured for travel longitudinally along the rail (e.g., allow for “grinding”). In one embodiment, an extended portion on either side of the boot is disclosed. A system that employs the boot with a ski is also disclosed, as is a method of using the ski boot.



Inventors:
Len, Brian C. (Mechanicville, NY, US)
Application Number:
11/536417
Publication Date:
04/05/2007
Filing Date:
09/28/2006
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63C5/07
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
RESTIFO, JEFFREY J
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Brian C. Len (21 C. Fairway Drive, Mechanicville, NY, 12118, US)
Claims:
1. A ski boot comprising: an outer shell having an upper portion and a lower portion; a liner, configured to fit within the outer shell; a closure system, attached to at least one of the upper portion and the lower portion, configured to suitably close the ski boot around a foot; and at least one extended portion, that extends laterally from a side of the boot, configured to receive a rail, and further configured for travel longitudinally along the rail.

2. The boot of claim 1, further comprising a ski binding receiving system.

3. The boot of claim 1, wherein the at least one extended portion comprises two rigid lips, each extending laterally from opposites sides of the boot.

4. The boot of claim 1, the at least one extended portion is attached to the lower portion.

5. The boot of claim 1, wherein the side of the boot is part of the lower portion.

6. The boot of claim 1, wherein at least one of the lower portion and the at least one extended portion define a recess.

7. The boot of claim 1, wherein the at least one extended portion extends laterally from the side of the boot at least in a range of approximately 1/2 inch to approximately 3 inches.

8. The boot of claim 1, wherein the at least one extended portion extends longitudinally along a length of the boot at least in a range of approximately 3 inches to substantially a length of the lower portion.

9. The boot of claim 1, wherein the at least one extended portion is monolithic with the outer shell.

10. A system for skiing comprising: a boot including: an outer shell having an upper portion and a lower portion; a liner, configured to fit within the outer shell; a closure system, attached to at least one of the upper portion and the lower portion, configured to suitably close the ski boot around a foot; and at least one extended portion, that extends laterally from a side of the boot, configured to receive a rail, and further configured for travel longitudinally along the rail; and a ski operatively attached to the boot.

11. The system of claim 10, wherein the ski is removably attachable to the boot.

12. The system of claim 10, wherein the ski further comprises a bottom surface having a recess therein configured to receive a rail and further configured for travel transversely along the rail.

13. The system of claim 12, wherein the recess is located substantially underneath the boot.

14. The system of claim 12, wherein the recess has a cross-section shape being one selected from a group consisting of: channel-shaped, curved, angled, and box-shaped.

15. The system of claim 10, the ski further comprising: a binding system; and the boot further comprising: a ski binding receiving system for removable attachment to the binding system.

16. The system of claim 10, wherein the ski is a length in a range of approximately 12 inches to approximately 250 cm.

17. The system of claim 10, wherein the at least one extended portion extends laterally from the side of the boot at least in a range of approximately 1/2 inch to approximately 3 inches.

18. A method of skiing, comprising: attaching a ski boot to a foot, wherein the ski boot includes: an outer shell having an upper portion and a lower portion; a liner, configured to fit within the outer shell; a closure system, attached to at least one of the upper portion and the lower portion, configured to suitably close the ski boot around the foot; and at least one extended portion, that extends laterally from a side of the ski boot, configured to receive a rail, and further configured for travel longitudinally along the rail; operatively attaching a ski to the ski boot; and traveling so that the at least one extended portion receives the rail.

Description:

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 60/722,768 filed on Sep. 30, 2005, and entitled “Ski/Boot System For Grinding,” which is incorporated by reference herein in its entirety.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The invention relates generally to alpine skiing and more particularly to a ski boot to aid a skier with various newschool skiing tricks, such as “grinding”, a system and method of use thereof.

BACKGROUND OF INVENTION

With the recent advent and popularity of newschool terrain parks at ski mountains, there has been an explosion in the sport. Whether snowboarders or skiers, this genre of snow sport is extremely popular, especially with youth.

Many types of terrain are used to do the various tricks for the skier and snowboarder alike. Terrain and the types of tricks are constantly changing, and often becoming more extreme. Often terrain and/or tricks are brought into the newschool realm from other extreme sports including skateboarding. Amongst others in newschool skiing, terrains use various rail systems (e.g., bar, rail, funbox, etc.) for “grinding”. Grinding is a term to include the activity of sliding along and/or over a rigid material, be it manmade or natural.

The tricks and/or terrain for newschool skiing are changing and growing at a rate that far outpaces the equipment. With the exception of “park” type skis designed more specifically for skiing within terrain parks (e.g., “jibbing”), the ski, boot, and/or binding used for alpine skiing have not markedly changed to keep up with the world of newschool skiing.

In view of the foregoing, a need exists to overcome one or more of the deficiencies in the related art.

SUMMARY OF INVENTION

A solution for newschool skiing so as to more readily be able to “grind” is provided. A ski boot may include an outer shell that has an upper portion and a lower portion; a liner, configured to fit within the outer shell; a closure system, that is attached to either, or both of, the upper portion and the lower portion, configured to suitably close the ski boot around a foot; and at least one extended portion (e.g., “lip”), that extends laterally from a side of the boot, configured to receive a rail, and further configured for travel longitudinally along the rail (e.g., allow for “grinding”). In one embodiment, an extended portion on either side of the boot is disclosed. A system that employs the boot with a ski is also disclosed, as is a method of using the ski boot.

A first aspect of the present invention is directed to a ski boot comprising: an outer shell having an upper portion and a lower portion; a liner, configured to fit within the outer shell; a closure system, attached to at least one of the upper portion and the lower portion, configured to suitably close the ski boot around a foot; and at least one extended portion, that extends laterally from a side of the boot, configured to receive a rail, and further configured for travel longitudinally along the rail.

A second aspect of the present invention is directed to a system for skiing comprising: a boot including: an outer shell having an upper portion and a lower portion; a liner, configured to fit within the outer shell; a closure system, attached to at least one of the upper portion and the lower portion, configured to suitably close the ski boot around a foot; and at least one extended portion, that extends laterally from a side of the boot, configured to receive a rail, and further configured for travel longitudinally along the rail; and a ski operatively attached to the boot.

A third aspect of the present invention is directed to a method of skiing, comprising: attaching a ski boot to a foot, wherein the ski boot includes: an outer shell having an upper portion and a lower portion; a liner, configured to fit within the outer shell; a closure system, attached to at least one of the upper portion and the lower portion, configured to suitably close the ski boot around the foot; and at least one extended portion, that extends laterally from a side of the ski boot, configured to receive a rail, and further configured for travel longitudinally along the rail; operatively attaching a ski to the ski boot; and traveling so that the at least one extended portion receives the rail.

The illustrative aspects of the present invention are designed to solve the problems herein described and other problems not discussed.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWINGS

These and other features of this invention will be more readily understood from the following detailed description of the various aspects of the invention taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 depicts a front perspective view of a ski boot in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 2 depicts a side elevation of the ski boot of FIG. 1 in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 3 depicts a front sectional view along sectional line 33 of the ski boot in FIG. 2 in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention

FIG. 4A depicts a side elevation of a ski boot system accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 4B depicts a bottom view of the ski boot system of FIG. 4A in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIGS. 5A - 5D depicts side views of a ski of the ski boot system in accordance with a embodiments of the present invention

FIG. 6A depicts a perspective view of a skier using the ski boot portion of the ski boot system of FIG. 4A in a grinding move in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 6B depicts a perspective view of a skier using the ski portion of the ski boot system of FIG. 4A in a grinding move in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention.

The drawings are merely schematic representations, not intended to portray specific parameters of the invention. The drawings are intended to depict only typical embodiments of the invention, and therefore should not be considered as limiting the scope of the invention. In the drawings, like numbering represents like elements.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The invention provides a solution for newschool skiers so as to more readily be able to do various tricks, such as “grinding”. The invention includes a boot, a ski system that employs a boot with a ski (wherein the ski may be integrated with boot or removably attachable to the boot), and a method of using the boot.

Turning to the figures, FIG. 1 depicts a front perspective view of a ski boot in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention. A ski boot 10 for grinding includes various parts including an outer shell having an upper portion 12 and a lower portion 14. Within the upper portion 12 and/or the lower portion 14 is a liner 20, configured to fit within the outer shell. As is known, the liner 20 typically is made of a softer, compliant material (e.g., foam, cloth, padding, etc.) designed to conform to a skier's foot 99 (FIG. 3). Contrastingly, the upper portion 12 and lower portion 14 of the outer shell are made of a single hard material and/or a combination of materials that merely includes hard material (e.g., plastic) along with, optionally, soft material(s) (not shown).

The ski boot 10 further includes a closure system 16 that is configured to suitably close the ski boot 10 around the foot 99 (FIG. 3) of the skier. The closure system 16 may include at least one buckle-type enclosure device, and/or the like. The closure system 16 is attached to either the upper portion 12 or the lower portion 14, or both. As shown in FIG. 1, the closure system 16 has a first closure system 16A attached to the upper portion 12 and a second closure system 16B attached the lower portion 14. It is contemplated under aspects of the invention, that the closure system 16 and various aspects of the shell (e.g., upper portion 12, lower portion 14) comprise, what is known, as a front-entry, rear-entry, and/or mid-entry ski boot 10.

In any event, regardless of the configuration of parts and/or types of material(s) of the ski boot 10, the ski boot 10 further comprises at least one extended portion 30 that extends laterally from a side 15 of the boot 10, configured to receive a rail 98 (See e.g., FIGS. 2, 3), and further configured for travel longitudinally along the rail 98. For example, the extended portion 30 may engage with the rail 98. The configuration ultimately allows a skier, using the boot 10, to readily be able to “grind”. The at least one extended portion 30 may be on one, or both, sides 15 of the boot 10. As shown in FIG. 1, the boot 10 includes a first extended portion 30A along an outer side 15 of the boot 10 and a second extended portion 30B along an inner side 15 of the boot 10. In an alternative embodiment, the at least one extended portion 30 may extend from one, or both, sides of a binding system 52 (FIG. 4A); and/or, the at least one extended portion 30 may extend from a combination of both a side 15 of the boot 10 and the binding system 52.

The boot 10 may optionally include a ski binding receiving system 18, fore and aft on the boot 10 which allows the boot 10 to be removably attached to numerous binding systems 52 (FIG. 4A) now known, or later developed. An embodiment of the invention includes a boot 10 that is integrated with a ski so that a ski binding receiving system 18 and/or binding system 52 is not necessary. Further, it is contemplated that the ski binding receiving system 18 and/or binding system 52 may be any systems suitable for Nordic, Alpine, Randonee′, Telemark, and/or other types of skiing.

Turning to FIGS. 2 and 3, which depict a side elevation and front sectional view along sectional line 3-3 of the ski boot 3 of FIG. 1 in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention, the extended portion 30 is receiving a rail 98. The rail 98 may be any object, manmade or natural, that is suitable for “grinding”, though typically it is a object made out of hard material (e.g., metal, wood, composite, etc.) that is solid, semi-solid, or hollow. As shown, the extended portion 30 may be attached to the lower portion 14 of the ski boot 10. In some embodiments, the extended portion 30 may be monolithic with the outer shell. Further, the extended portion may form a lip and may have a lower surface 32. The extended portion 30 and/or the lower surface 32 and the lower portion 14 of the boot 10 may define a recess 34 that suitably receives the rail 98 during “grinding” and/or other skiing techniques.

Sizes and material type(s) of the extended portion 30 may vary. For example, the distance that the extended portion 30 extends beyond the side 15 of the boot 10 may be in the range of approximately 1/2 inch to approximately 3 inches. Similarly, the extended portion 30 need not be of uniform distance. For example, the extended portion 30 may extend from the boot 10 a greater distance towards the rear of the boot 10 than the front. Further, while it may be advantageous that the extended portion 30 be of sturdy construction, it need not be of the same material as the outer shell. Similarly, the extended portion 30 may be monolithic with the lower portion 14 and/or upper portion 12 of the boot 10. The extended portion 30 may extend longitudinally along the length of the boot 10 for different distances, depending on the embodiment. For example, the extended portion 30 may extend longitudinally along a length of the boot 10 at least in a range of approximately 3 inches to substantially a length of the lower portion 14. In any event, the shape, configuration, and construct of the single, or dual extended portion 30 is such that a skier 100 (FIGS. 5A, 5B) can perform techniques, such as “grinding.”

Turning to FIG. 4A and 4B, which depict a side elevation and bottom view, respectively, of a ski boot system 40 in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention. The system 40 may include a boot 10 such as that described herein and a ski 50 operatively attached to the boot 10. As discussed the ski 50 may be integrated with the boot 10 or removably attachable to the boot 10 with a variety of binding systems 52 on the ski 50 acting in consort with a suitable ski binding receiving system 18 on the boot 10. The ski 50 may be of any suitable length for skiing and/or doing various techniques. For example, the length of the ski 50 may be in a range of approximately 12 inches to approximately 250 cm. In any event, the ski 50 may further include a recess 54 located along a lower surface 56 of the ski 50. This recess 54, similar functionally to the extended portion 30 on the boot 10 discussed herein, allows an additional feature of “grinding” for the skier 100. Specifically, the recess 54, which may be located, for example, underneath the boot 10, is configured so as to also receive a rail 98 and to allow travel by the skier 100, in this case, transversely along the rail 98 (FIG. 6B). Similarly, the recess 54 need not be curved in its shape. Other suitable shapes, depths, and/or the like may be employed while still suitably receiving the rail 98. The recess 54 may have a cross-section shape being one selected from a group consisting of: channel-shaped, curved, angled, and box-shaped. Further, the recess 54 may be symmetrical in cross-section, asymmetrical in cross-section, and/or the like. The shape and depth of the recess 54, while suitable for “grinding” (FIG. 6B), may be such so as to also allow for “traditional” skiing position with the ski 50 (i.e., ski traveling with longitudinal length of ski 50 going down the fall line). FIGS. 5A through 5D show various suitable recesses 54 on a ski 50 of the system 40.

The foregoing description of the preferred embodiments of this invention has been presented for purposes of illustration and description. It is not intended to be exhaustive or to limit the invention to the precise form disclosed, and obviously, many modifications and variations are possible.





 
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