Title:
EXERCISING MACHINE WITH ADJUSTABLE STRIDE LENGTH AND HEIGHT
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An exercising machine includes a base frame, a rotary member, left and right rocker link units, left and right foot pedals, left and right cross links, and left and right coupling units. The rotary member is mounted rotatably on the base frame. Each of the left and right rocker link units is coupled pivotably to the base frame. The left and right foot pedals are coupled pivotably and respectively to the left and right rocker link units. Each of the left and right cross links has a length that is adjustable, is coupled pivotably to the rotary member, and is coupled pivotably to a respective one of the left and right rocker link units.



Inventors:
Lee, Sunny (Nan-Tou Hsien, TW)
Application Number:
11/743047
Publication Date:
11/06/2008
Filing Date:
05/01/2007
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63B22/04
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Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
TECCO, ANDREW M
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie LLP (PO BOX 29001, Glendale, CA, 91209-9001, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. An exercising machine, comprising: a base frame; a resistance-imparting rotary member mounted rotatably on said base frame; left and right rocker link units, each of which is coupled pivotably to said base frame and each of which has a plurality of engaging segments disposed along the length thereof; left and right foot pedals, each of which is coupled pivotably to a respective one of said left and right rocker link units; left and right cross links, each of which is coupled pivotably to said rotary member; and left and right coupling units, each of which couples pivotably a respective one of said left and right cross links to a selected one of said engaging segments of the respective one of said left and right rocker link units; wherein the length of each of said left and right cross links is adjustable.

2. The exercising machine as claimed in claim 1, wherein each of said left and right cross links includes a front cross link member, and a rear cross link member that is coupled telescopically to said front cross link member.

3. The exercising machine as claimed in claim 2, wherein said front cross link member of each of said left and right cross link has a plurality of engaging segments that are disposed along the length thereof, the exercising machine further comprising left and right securing members, each of which is operable so as to secure said rear cross link member of the respective one of said left and right cross links to a selected one of said engaging segments of said front cross link member of the respective one of said left and right cross links.

4. The exercising machine as claimed in claim 3, wherein each of said engaging segments of said front cross link member of each of said left and right cross links is formed with an engaging hole, each of said left and right securing members including a screw that extends through the rear cross link member of the respective one of said left and right cross links and that engages threadedly said engaging hole in the selected one of said engaging segments of said front cross link member of the respective one of said left and right cross links.

5. The exercising machined as claimed in claim 1, wherein each of said left and right coupling units includes a pivoting member, a pivot joint that interconnects the respective one of said left and right cross links and said pivoting member, a pair of arms that extend from said pivoting member and that clamp the selected one of said engaging segments of the respective one of said left and right rocker link units, and a fastening member that is operable so as to fasten releasably said arms to the selected one of said engaging segments of the respective one of said left and right rocker link units.

6. The exercising machine as claimed in claim 1, wherein said base frame includes front and rear frame members, and an intermediate frame member that interconnects said front and rear frame members, and that is disposed between said left and right rocker link units, each of said left and right rocker link units being coupled pivotably to said intermediate frame member of said base frame.

7. The exercising machine as claimed in claim 1, further comprising left and right handle units, each of which is coupled to the respective one of said left and right rocker link units so as to be co-rotatable therewith, each of said left and right handle units including a handle holder that extends from the respective one of said left and right rocker link units, a handle that is coupled pivotably to said handle holder, said handle being pivotable relative to said handle holder to a selected one of angular positions, and a retaining member that is operable so as to retain the handle to the selected one of the angular positions.

8. The exercising machine as claimed in claim 1, wherein said base frame is adapted to be disposed on a flat surface, each of said left and right cross links forming an angle relative to the flat surface that is greater than zero.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The invention relates to an exercising machine, more particularly to an elliptical exercising machine.

2. Description of the Related Art

FIG. 1 illustrates a conventional exercising machine that includes a base frame 11, left and right rocker links 131, left and right handles 133, and left and right foot pedals 132. The base frame 11 includes left and right frame members 111. Each of the left and right rocker links 131 is coupled pivotably to a respective one of the left and right frame members 111 of the base frame 11. Each of the left and right handles 133 extends from an upper end portion of a respective one of the left and right rocker links 131. Each of the left and right foot pedals 132 is mounted on a lower end portion of the respective one of the left and right rocker links 131.

The aforementioned conventional exercising machine is disadvantageous in that since the left and right rocker links 131 are disposed between the left and right frame members 111 of the base frame 11, the conventional exercising machine is inevitably large and bulky. Moreover, the conventional exercising machine permits the user (not shown) to perform only one type of a striding movement. That is, the stride length and height of the conventional exercising machine are fixed. As such, the user may get bored of the conventional exercising machine very quickly. Further, each of the left and right rocker links 131 wobbles when the user gets on and off of the left and right foot pedals 132. This poses safety risks in that the user may be lose his or her balance and fall.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Therefore, the main object of the present invention is to provide an exercising machine that can overcome the aforesaid drawbacks of the prior art.

According to the present invention, an exercising machine comprises a base frame, a resistance-imparting rotary member, left and right rocker link units, left and right foot pedals, left and right cross links, and left and right coupling units. The resistance-imparting rotary member is mounted rotatably on the base frame. Each of the left and right rocker link units is coupled pivotably to the base frame and has a plurality of engaging segments disposed along the length thereof. Each of the left and right foot pedals is coupled pivotably to a respective one of the left and right rocker link units. Each of the left and right cross links is coupled pivotably to the rotary member. Each of the left and right coupling units couples pivotably a respective one of the left and right cross links to a selected one of the engaging segments of the respective one of the left and right rocker link units. The length of each of the left and right cross links is adjustable.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Other features and advantages of the present invention will become apparent in the following detailed description of the preferred embodiment with reference to the accompanying drawings, of which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a conventional exercising machine;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the preferred embodiment of an exercising machine according to the present invention;

FIG. 3 is a schematic rear view of the preferred embodiment shown in FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is a schematic top view of the preferred embodiment shown in FIG. 2;

FIG. 5 is a schematic left side view of the preferred embodiment shown in FIG. 2;

FIG. 6 is a fragmentary schematic view to illustrate a handle unit of the preferred embodiment;

FIG. 7 is a fragmentary schematic view to illustrate the handle unit of the preferred embodiment disposed at a first angular position;

FIG. 8 is a fragmentary schematic view to illustrate the handle unit of the preferred embodiment disposed at a second angular position;

FIG. 9 is a fragmentary schematic view to illustrate a cross link of the preferred embodiment;

FIG. 10 is a fragmentary schematic view to illustrate the length of the cross link of the preferred embodiment when shortened;

FIG. 11 is a fragmentary schematic view to illustrate a coupling unit of the preferred embodiment;

FIG. 12 is a schematic view to illustrate operation of the preferred embodiment after adjustment thereof to a minimum stride height and a minimum stride length;

FIG. 13 is a schematic view to illustrate operation of the preferred embodiment after adjustment thereof to a maximum stride height; and

FIG. 14 is a schematic view to illustrate operation of the preferred embodiment after adjustment thereof to a maximum stride length.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

Referring to FIGS. 2 to 4, the preferred embodiment of an exercising machine according to this invention is shown to include a base frame 20, a resistance-imparting rotary member 22, left and right rocker link units 50, left and right foot pedals 30, left and right cross links 40, and left and right coupling units 70.

The exercising machine, such as an elliptical exercising machine, permits adjustment of stride height and length thereof, in a manner that will be described hereinafter.

The base frame 20 includes front and rear frame members 211, 212, each of which is disposed on a flat surface (not shown), and an intermediate frame member 213 that interconnects the front and rear frame members 211, 212 and that is disposed between the left and right rocker link units 50. In this embodiment, the intermediate frame member 213 has a front segment 2131 that extends upwardly and inclinedly from the front frame member 211, and a rear segment 2132 that extends upwardly and inclinedly from the rear frame member 212 and that is connected to the front segment 2131 thereof.

The rotary member 22 is mounted rotatably on the front segment 2131 of the intermediate frame member 213 of the base frame 20, has left and right sides 221, and is operable so as to impart a resistance. Since the construction of the rotary member 22 is known to those skilled in the art, a detailed description of the same will be dispensed with herein for the sake of brevity.

The left and right rocker link units 50 constitute a four-bar linkage. In particular, with further reference to FIG. 5, the left rocker link unit 50 includes front and rear rocker links 51, 52, each of which has an upper end 511, 521 that is connected pivotably to the intermediate frame member 213 of the base frame 20. In this embodiment, the rear rocker link 52 of the left rocker link unit 50 has a plurality of engaging segments that are disposed along the length thereof.

Since the construction of the right rocker link unit 50 is similar to that of the left rocker link unit 50, a detailed description thereof is omitted herein for the sake of brevity.

The exercising machine further includes left and right handle units 80, each of which is coupled to the upper end 521 of the rear rocker link 52 of a respective one of the left and right rocker link units 50 so as to be co-rotatable therewith. In particular, as best shown in FIG. 6, the left handle unit 80 includes a handle holder 81, a handle 82, and a retaining member 83. The handle holder 81 of the left handle unit 80 includes left and right walls 811, 812, each of which extends from the upper end 521 of the rear rocker link 52 of the left rocker link unit 50. The handle 82 of the left handle unit 80 has an end portion 821 that extends between the left and right walls 811, 812 of the handle holder 81, and that is connected pivotably to the left and right walls 811, 812 of the handle holder 81 via a pivot joint 84.

In this embodiment, the handle 82 of the left handle unit 80 is pivotable relative to the handle holder 81 between first and second angular positions. As illustrated in FIG. 7, when the handle 82 of the left handle unit 80 is disposed at the first angular position, the end portion 821 of the handle 82 forms an angle of a hundred and eighty degrees with respect to the rear rocker link 52 of the left rocker link unit 50. On the other hand, as illustrated in FIG. 8, when the handle 82 of the left handle unit 80 is disposed at the second angular position, the end portion 821 of the handle 82 forms an angle of less than a hundred and eighty degrees with respect to the rear rocker link 52 of the left rocker link unit 50 and leans toward the front frame member 211 of the base frame 20 (see FIG. 2). The retaining member 83 of the left handle unit 80 is a fastening element, such as a screw, and is operable so as to retain the handle 82 to a selected one of the first and second angular positions. In particular, each of the left and right walls 811, 812 of the handle holder 81 is formed with first and second through-holes 8111, 8121, 8112 (only the first through-hole 8121 in the right wall 812 is shown in FIG. 6). The end portion 821 of the handle 82 is formed with a through-hole 8210. When the handle 82 is disposed at the first angular position, the retaining member 83 is operable so as to extend through the first through-hole 8111 in the left wall 811 of the handle holder 81, the through-hole 8210 in the end portion 821 of the handle 82, and the first through-hole 8121 in the right wall 812 of the handle holder 81. On the other hand, when the handle 82 is disposed at the second angular position, the retaining member 83 is operable so as to extend through the second through-hole 8112 in the left wall 811 of the handle holder 81, the through-hole 8210 in the end portion 821 of the handle 82, and the second through-hole in the right wall 812 of the handle holder 81.

It is noted that, in this embodiment, the first and second through-holes 8111, 8121, 8112 in each of the left and right walls 811, 821 of the handle holder 81 are displaced by an angle of twenty-five degrees with respect to the pivot joint 84.

Since the construction of the right handle unit 80 is similar to that of the left handle unit 80, a detailed description thereof is omitted herein for the sake of brevity.

Each of the left and right foot pedals 30, as best shown in FIG. 2, includes a lever 31, first and second pairs of ears 32, 33, and a footpad 34. The lever 31 of each of the left and right foot pedals 30 has a top surface 311. The first pair of ears 32 of each of the left and right foot pedals 30 are provided on a front end portion of the top surface 311 of the lever 31 and are connected pivotably to a lower end 512 of the front rocker link 51 of a respective one of the left and right rocker link units 50. The second pair of ears 33 of each of the left and right foot pedals 30 are provided on the front end portion of the top surface 311 of the lever 31, are disposed behind the first pair of ears 32, and are connected pivotably to a lower end 522 of the rear rocker link 52 of the respective one of the left and right rocker link units 50. The footpad 34 of each of the left and right foot pedals 30 is provided on a rear end portion of the top surface 311 of the lever 31.

Each of the left and right cross links 40 has a length that is adjustable and is coupled pivotably to a respective one of the left and right sides 221 of the rotary member 22. Since the left and right cross links 40 are identical in structure, only the left cross link 40 will be described herein.

With further reference to FIG. 9, the left cross link unit 40 includes front and rear cross link members 41, 42, each of which has an engaging end portion 411, 421. The engaging end portion 421 of the rear cross link member 42 is tubular in shape and receives telescopically the engaging end portion 411 of the front cross link member 41 therein. The front cross link member 41 has a distal end 412 (see FIG. 5) that is distal from the rear cross link member 42 and that is coupled pivotably to the left side 221 of the rotary member 22.

The exercising machine further includes left and right securing members 60, each of which is operable so as to secure the engaging end portion 421 of the rear cross link member 42 of the respective one of the left and right cross links 40 to the engaging end portion 411 of the front cross link member 41 of the respective one of the left and right cross links 40. In particular, as best shown in FIG. 9, the engaging end portion 411 of the front cross link member 41 has a pair of engaging segments 4111 that are disposed along the length thereof, each of which is formed with an engaging holes 4110. The left securing member 60 includes a screw that extends through the engaging end portion 421 of the rear cross link member 42, and that engages threadedly the engaging hole 4110 in a selected one of the engaging segments 4111 of the engaging end portion 411 of the front cross link member 42.

Since the construction of the right securing member 60 is similar to that of the left securing member 60, a detailed description thereof is omitted herein for the sake of brevity.

It is noted that, as best shown in FIG. 10, when the engaging end portion 421 of the rear cross link member 42 is secured to the engaging hole 4110 in the engaging end portion 411 of the front cross link member 41 that is closer to the distal end 412 of the front cross link member 41, the length of the left cross link 40 is shortened. On the other hand, when the engaging end portion 421 of the rear cross link member 42 is secured to the engaging hole 4110 in the engaging end portion 411 of the front cross link member 41 that is farther from the distal end 412 of the front cross link member 41, the length of the left cross link 40 is lengthened.

Each of the left and right coupling units 70 couples pivotably the respective one of the left and right cross links 40 to a selected one of the engaging segments of the rear rocker link 52 of the respective one of the left and right rocker link units 50. In particular, as best shown in FIG. 9, the left coupling unit 70 includes a pivoting member 71, a pivot joint 72, a pair of arms 73, and a fastening member 74. With further reference to FIG. 11, the pivot joint 72 of the left coupling unit 70 interconnects the rear cross link member 42 of the left cross link 40 and the pivoting member 71 of the left coupling unit 70. The arms 73 of the left coupling unit 70 extend from the pivoting member 71 of the left coupling unit 70 and clamp the selected one of the engaging segments of the rear rocker link 52 of the left rocker link unit 50. The fastening member 74 of the left coupling unit 70 is operable so as to fasten releasably the arms 73 to the selected one of the engaging segments of the rear rocker link 52 of the left rocker link unit 50. In this embodiment, the fastening member 74 of the left coupling unit 70 includes a bolt 741 that extends through the arms 73, and a nut 742 that engages threadedly the bolt 741.

Since the construction of the right coupling unit 70 is similar to that of the left coupling unit 70, a detailed description thereof is omitted herein for the sake of brevity.

From the above description, referring to FIG. 12, when the length of each of the left and right cross links 40 is lengthened, the exercising machine of this invention is adjusted to a minimum stride height. As such, when the exercising machine of this invention is in operation, that is, when the user (not shown) steps on the left and right foot pedals 30, the striding movement performed by the user corresponds more to motion made while walking. On the other hand, referring to FIG. 13, when the length of each of the left and right cross link 40 is shortened, the exercising machine of this invention is adjusted to a maximum stride height. As such, when the exercising machine of this invention is in operation, the striding movement performed by the user corresponds more to motion made while climbing.

In addition, referring back to FIG. 12, when it is desired to adjust the exercising machine of this invention to a minimum stride length (L1), the arms 73 of each of the left and right coupling units 70 are simply fastened to the engaging segment of the rear rocker link 52 of the respective one of the left and right rocker link units 50 that is farthest to the upper end 521 of the rear rocker link 52 of the respective one of the left and right rocker link units 50. On the other hand, referring to FIG. 14, when it is desired to adjust the exercising machine of this invention to a maximum stride length (L2), the arms 73 of each of the left and right coupling units 70 are simply fastened to the engaging segment of the rear rocker link 52 of the respective one of the left and right rocker link units 50 that is closest to the upper end 521 of the rear rocker link 52 of the respective one of the left and right rocker link units 50.

It is noted herein that the exercising machine of this invention is configured such that, when in operation, each of the left and right cross links 40 always forms an angle, relative to the flat surface, that is greater than zero degree. As such, dead center positions of the rotary member 22 are bypassed, thereby ensuring smooth operation of the exercising machine of this invention.

It is further noted herein that when the exercising machine of this invention is adjusted to the minimum stride height, the handle 82 of each of the left and right handle units 80 may be adjusted to the first angular position. On the other hand, when the exercising machine of this invention is adjusted to the maximum stride height, the handle 82 of each of the left and right handle units 80 may be adjusted to the second angular position.

From the above description, since the intermediate frame member 213 of the base frame 20 is disposed between the left and right rocker link units 50, the physical size of the exercising machine of this invention is considerably reduced. Moreover, since the left and right rocker link units 50 is coupled to the rotary member 22, the left and right rocker link units 50 is prevented from wobbling when the user gets on or off of the left and right foot pedals 30. Further, the stride height and length of the exercising of this invention is adjustable, thereby permitting the user to perform various striding movements.

While the present invention has been described in connection with what is considered the most practical and preferred embodiment, it is understood that this invention is not limited to the disclosed embodiment but is intended to cover various arrangements included within the spirit and scope of the broadest interpretation so as to encompass all such modifications and equivalent arrangements.