Title:
Training device
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A training device to strengthen the legs of a user while the device is worn by the user is disclosed. The device includes a belt for attachment about the waist of a user and a first foot engaging assembly coupled to the belt by a first resilient strap. The first resilient strap has a first end coupled to a front portion of the belt and a second end coupled to a rear portion of the belt, wherein the first foot engaging assembly is coupled to the first resilient strap along a central portion of the first resilient strap between the first end of the first resilient strap and the second end of the first resilient strap. The device also includes a second foot engaging assembly coupled to the belt by a second resilient strap. The second resilient strap has a first end coupled to a front portion of the belt and a second end coupled to a rear portion of the belt, wherein the second foot engaging assembly is coupled to the second resilient strap along a central portion of the second resilient strap between the first end of the second resilient strap and the second end of the second resilient strap. In use, the belt is secured to the waist of a user while the first foot engaging assembly and the second foot engaging assembly are respectively secured to the feet of a user in such a way the first resilient strap and the second resilient strap strengthen the legs of a user.



Inventors:
Strachan, Kenneth L. (Bowie, MD, US)
Application Number:
09/727710
Publication Date:
06/06/2002
Filing Date:
12/04/2000
Assignee:
STRACHAN KENNETH L.
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
482/126, 482/125
International Classes:
A63B21/055; A63B69/00; (IPC1-7): A63B21/02
View Patent Images:
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20070149368KNEE REHABILITATION DEVICEJune, 2007Koch
20070155588Remote monitoring of a patientJuly, 2007Stark et al.
20080103023Method of Developing and Creating a Personalized Exercise Regime in a Digital MediumMay, 2008Chung et al.
20070213184Abdominal exercise stationSeptember, 2007Habing et al.
20080051269Exercise Assemblies Having Foot-Retaining ApparatusFebruary, 2008Lines
20070042873Sports deviceFebruary, 2007Lutkov
20070265148Pneumatic-aided fitness equipmentNovember, 2007Lin



Primary Examiner:
BAKER, LORI LYNN
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
John L. Welsh (Arlington, VA, US)
Claims:
1. A training device to strengthen the legs of a user while the device is worn by the user, comprising: a belt for attachment about the waist of a user; a front pad and a rear pad connected about the belt so as to slide thereon; a first foot engaging assembly coupled to the belt by a first resilient strap, the first resilient strap having a first end coupled to the front pad and a second end coupled to a rear pad, wherein the first foot engaging assembly is coupled to the first resilient strap along a central portion of the first resilient strap between the first end of the first resilient strap and the second end of the first resilient strap; a second foot engaging assembly coupled to the belt by a second resilient strap, the second resilient strap having a first end coupled to a front pad and a second end coupled to a rear pad, wherein the second foot engaging assembly is coupled to the second resilient strap along a central portion of the second resilient strap between the first end of the second resilient strap and the second end of the second resilient strap; and wherein the belt is secured to the waist of a user while the first foot engaging assembly and the second foot engaging assembly are respectively secured to the feet of a user in such a way the first resilient strap and the second resilient strap strengthen the legs of a user.

2. The training device according to claim 1, further including a third resilient strap having a first end coupled to a front pad adjacent the first end of the first resilient strap and a second end coupled to a rear pad adjacent the second end of the first resilient strap, the third resilient strap being coupled to the first foot engaging assembly along a central portion of the third resilient strap between the first end of the third resilient strap and the second end of the third resilient strap; and a fourth resilient strap having a first end coupled to a front pad adjacent the first end of the second resilient strap and a second end coupled to a rear pad adjacent the second end of the second resilient strap, the fourth resilient strap being coupled to the second foot engaging assembly along a central portion of the fourth resilient strap between the first end of the fourth resilient strap and the second end of the fourth resilient strap.

3. The training device according to claim 2, wherein the first resilient strap, the second resilient strap, the third resilient strap and the fourth resilient strap are releasably coupled to the front and rear pads.

4. The training device according to claim 2, wherein the first foot engaging assembly is releasably coupled to the first resilient strap and the third resilient strap, and the second foot engaging assembly is releasably coupled to the second resilient strap and the fourth resilient strap.

5. The training device according to claim 2, wherein the first foot engaging assembly is slidably coupled to the first resilient strap and the third resilient strap, and the second foot engaging assembly is slidably coupled to the second resilient strap and the fourth resilient strap.

6. The training device according to claim 1, wherein the first resilient strap is releasably coupled to the front and rear pads and the second resilient strap is releasably coupled to the front and rear.

7. The training device according to claim 6, wherein the first foot engaging assembly is releasably coupled to the first resilient strap and the second foot engaging assembly is releasably coupled to the second resilient strap.

8. The training device according to claim 1, wherein the first foot engaging assembly is releasably coupled to the first resilient strap and the second foot engaging assembly is releasably coupled to the second resilient strap.

9. The training device according to claim 1, wherein the first foot engaging assembly is slidably coupled to the first resilient strap and the second foot engaging assembly is slidably coupled to the second resilient strap.

10. The training device according to claim 1, further including a fifth resilient strap having a first end coupled to a first side portion of the belt and a free second end adapted to be gripped by a user, and a sixth resilient strap having a first end coupled to a second side portion, opposite the first side portion, and a free second end adapted to be gripped by a user.

11. The training device according to claim 10, further including a first handle coupled to the second end of the fifth resilient strap and a second handle coupled to the second end of the sixth resilient strap.

12. The training device according to claim 10, further including a releasable attachment assembly connected to the free second end of the fifth resilient strap and a releasable attachment assembly connected to the free second end of the sixth resilient strap.

13. The training device according to claim 12, wherein a jump rope is attached between the releasable attachment assembly on each of the fifth and sixth resilient straps.

14. The training device according to claim 1, wherein the first and second foot engaging assembly are the form of a toe cap.

15. A kit including a training device including: a pair of pads having a plurality of attachment loops thereon wherein the pads may be slide over a belt; at least two resilient straps with releasable coupling means on each end thereof; a pair of foot engaging assemblies; and at least two straps with adjustable buckles associated therewith.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field of the Invention

[0002] The invention relates to a training device. More particularly, the invention relates to a resilient training device adapted to strengthen the legs of a user while being worn by the user.

[0003] 2. Description of the Prior Art

[0004] Training devices for strengthening the legs of an individual have been around for some time. In fact, some of the prior training devices may be worn by the user while he or she exercises to strengthen his or her legs. For example, U.S. Pat. No. 2,097,376 to Marshman discloses an exerciser for attachment to the body of a user. The exerciser includes a harness for attachment to the upper body of the user. The harness supports a plurality of cables secured between the harness and the feet of the user.

[0005] Specifically, two cables are worn on the front of the harness and secured to the front of special shoes having eyes for attachment of the cables thereto. Two cables are also worn on the back of the harness and secured to the back of the special shoes having eyes for attachment of the cables thereto. Unfortunately, this design is rather cumbersome and does not provide a user with a wide range of flexibility as he or she uses the exerciser.

[0006] For example, the full upper body harness substantially confines the movements of the user, while the special shoes required by the exerciser make it difficult to adapt the exercise for different uses. In addition, the use of separate straps for the front and back of the exerciser substantially limits the versatility of the exerciser, since the fixed lengths of the cables do not adapt to the different positions a user might assume while he or she exercises.

[0007] Another training device employing elastic straps is disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 5,062,642 to Berry et al. This training device includes a single strap secured between a belt and a pair of foot engaging loops to create two forward runs and two rearward runs. The device is primarily designed for training golfers to properly position their legs while swinging a golf club. As such, the foot engaging loops are shaped and designed for attachment at the arch of the user's feet.

[0008] While positioning each loop at the arch of a user's foot may be advantageous for golfers who remain stationary, the use of a foot engaging loop secured at each arch of a user's foot would cause a great deal of discomfort resulting from the application of pressure on the arch of the user's foot. In addition, the loop is not designed to remain on the foot of a user moving about while he or she exercises. Finally, the use of a single strap requires that the strap pass along the inner surface of the belt. While the attachment of the belt along the inner surface of the belt may be acceptable in golf training, where the golfer does not move a great deal, the belt mounted on the inner surface would apply undesirable pressure to the body of a user moving about while he or she exercises with the training device.

[0009] After reviewing the prior art, it is clear that a need exists for a training device that may be worn by a user to strengthen his or her legs while the user goes about his or her normal training routine. The present invention provides such a training device.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0010] It is, therefore, an object of the present invention to provide a training device to strengthen the legs of a user while the device is worn by the user. The device includes a belt for attachment about the waist of a user and a first foot engaging assembly coupled to the belt by a first resilient strap. The first resilient strap has a first end coupled to a front portion of the belt and a second end coupled to a rear portion of the belt, wherein the first foot engaging assembly is coupled to the first resilient strap along a central portion of the first resilient strap between the first end of the first resilient strap and the second end of the first resilient strap. The device also includes a second foot engaging assembly coupled to the belt by a second resilient strap. The second resilient strap has a first end coupled to a front portion of the belt and a second end coupled to a rear portion of the belt, wherein the second foot engaging assembly is coupled to the second resilient strap along a central portion of the second resilient strap between the first end of the second resilient strap and the second end of the second resilient strap. In use, the belt is secured to the waist of a user while the first foot engaging assembly and the second foot engaging assembly are respectively secured to the feet of a user in such a way the first resilient strap and the second resilient strap strengthen the legs of a user.

[0011] It is also an object of the present invention to provide a training device including a third resilient strap having a first end coupled to a front portion of the belt adjacent the first end of the first resilient strap and a second end coupled to a rear portion of the belt adjacent the second end of the first resilient strap. The third resilient strap is coupled to the first foot engaging assembly along a central portion of the third resilient strap between the first end of the third resilient strap and the second end of the third resilient strap. The device also includes a fourth resilient strap having a first end coupled to a front portion of the belt adjacent the first end of the second resilient strap and a second end coupled to a rear portion of the belt adjacent the second end of the second resilient strap. The fourth resilient strap is coupled to the second foot engaging assembly along a central portion of the fourth resilient strap between the first end of the fourth resilient strap and the second end of the fourth resilient strap.

[0012] It is another object of the present invention to provide a training device wherein the first resilient strap, the second resilient strap, the third resilient strap and the fourth resilient strap are releasably coupled to the belt.

[0013] It is a further object of the present invention to provide a training device wherein the first foot engaging assembly is releasably coupled to the first resilient strap and the third resilient strap, and the second foot engaging assembly is releasably coupled to the second resilient strap and the fourth resilient strap.

[0014] It is also an object of the present invention to provide a training device wherein the first foot engaging assembly is slidably coupled to the first resilient strap and the third resilient strap, and the second foot engaging assembly is slidably coupled to the second resilient strap and the fourth resilient strap.

[0015] It is another object of the present invention to provide a training device wherein the first resilient strap is releasably coupled to the belt and the second resilient strap is releasably coupled to the belt.

[0016] It is a further object of the present invention to provide a training device including a fifth resilient strap having a first end coupled to a first side portion of the belt and a free second end adapted to be gripped by a user, and a sixth resilient strap having a first end coupled to a second side portion, opposite the first side portion, and a free second end adapted to be gripped by a user.

[0017] It is also an object of the present invention to provide a training device including a first handle coupled to the second end of the fifth resilient strap and a second handle coupled to the second end of the sixth resilient strap.

[0018] Other objects and advantages of the present invention will become apparent from the following detailed description when viewed in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, which set forth certain embodiments of the invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0019] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an individual wearing the device.

[0020] FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the training device.

[0021] FIG. 3 is a detailed view of the toe cap.

[0022] FIG. 4 is a detailed view of the strap connection.

[0023] FIG. 5 is a perspective view of an alternate embodiment of the present invention.

[0024] FIG. 6 is a perspective view of a jump rope attachment.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0025] The detailed embodiments of the present invention are disclosed herein. It should be understood, however, that the disclosed embodiments are merely exemplary of the invention, which may be embodied in various forms. Therefore, the details disclosed herein are not to be interpreted as limited, but merely as the basis for the claims and as a basis for teaching one skilled in the art how to make and/or use the invention.

[0026] With reference to FIG. 1, a training device 10 to strengthen the legs of a user is disclosed. The training device 10 is utilized while the device is worn the user. As such, the device 10 includes a belt for attachment about the waist of a user. The belt 12 is similar to weight lifting belts used by an individual to support his or her back as he or she lifts weights. The belt is, therefore, provided with a buckle 14 for releasably securing the belt 12 about the waist of the user. Adjustment of the belt 12 is achieved by the provision of a Velcro (hook and loop material) connection loop 15.

[0027] Strength training is provided by the provision of four resilient straps positioned between the belt 12 and toe engaging caps 16, 18. Specifically, a first toe cap 16 is coupled to the belt by a first resilient strap 20. The first toe cap 16 includes first and second loops 22, 24 through which a central portion 26 of the first resilient strap 20 passes to slidably couple the first toe cap 16 to the first resilient strap 20.

[0028] Attachment of the first toe cap 16 to the belt 12 is achieved by releasably coupling the first end 28 of the first resilient strap 20 to a first front portion 30 of the belt 12 via a slidably mounted front pad 69 and releasably coupling the second end 32 of the first resilient strap 20 to a first rear portion 34 of the belt 12 via a slidably mounted rear pad 70. Specifically, the front pad 69 includes a first attachment loop 36 at the first front portion 30 to which the first end 28 of the first resilient strap 20 is releasably coupled by a clip 38 secured at the first end 28 of the first resilient strap 20. The first attachment loop 36 is coupled to the front pad 69 by a connection strap 40 having an adjustment buckle 42 thereon. Similarly, the rear pad 70 includes a second attachment loop 44 at the first rear portion 34 to which the second end 32 of the first resilient strap 20 is releasably coupled by a clip 38 secured at the second end 32 of the first resilient strap 20. The first attachment loop 36 and the second attachment loop 44 are positioned such that the first resilient strap 20 extends along the front and the back of a user's leg while the device 10 is worn by the user.

[0029] The device is also provided with a second toe cap 18 for attachment to the other foot of a user. Specifically, the second toe cap 18 is coupled to the belt by a second resilient strap 46. The second toe cap 18 includes first and second loops 48, 50 through which a central portion 52 of the second resilient strap 46 passes to slidably couple the second toe cap 18 to the second resilient strap 46.

[0030] Attachment of the second toe cap 18 to the belt 12 is achieved in much the same manner as attachment of the first toe cap 16 to the belt 12. Specifically, the belt 12 includes a third attachment loop 54 at the second front portion 56 to which the first end 58 of the second resilient strap 46 is releasably coupled by a clip 38 secured at the first end 58 of the second resilient strap 46. The third attachment loop 54 is coupled to the belt by a connection strap 40 having an adjustment buckle 42 thereon. Similarly, the rear pad 70 includes a fourth attachment loop 60 at the second rear portion 62 to which the second end 64 of the second resilient strap 46 is releasably coupled by a clip 38 secured at the second end 64 of the second resilient strap 46. The third attachment loop 54 and the fourth attachment loop 60 are positioned such that the second resilient strap 46 extends along the front and the back of the user's other leg while the device is worn by the user.

[0031] As shown in FIG. 2, the toe caps can easily be interchanged with stirrups 116 and 118. Thus, in keeping within the spirit of the invention, it is contemplated that various foot engagement assemblies can be used.

[0032] Increased resistance is provided by third and fourth resilient straps 66, 68 respectively coupled between the belt 12 and the first toe cap 16 and the second toe cap 18. The third and fourth resilient straps 66, 68 are attached between the belt 12 and the toe caps in the same manner as the first and second resilient straps.

[0033] The use of sliding pads 69 and 70 provide for improved adjustability so that the device may comfortably conform to may size and shaped users. In addition, the first and second loops attaching the straps to the toe caps are coupled to the toe caps by straps 71 with adjustment buckles 42.

[0034] The first and second toe caps 16, 18 are designed to be positioned and held over the toe portion of a user's foot such that force is applied between the ball of the user's foot and the tip of the user's foot. While the toe caps are simply designed to fit over the front portion of a user's foot, the toe caps could be provided with a variety of restraining structures without departing from the spirit of the present invention.

[0035] In use, the belt is positioned about the waist of a user and the toe caps are secured to the front portion of the user's feet. The resilient straps are coupled between the toe caps and the belt such that the first and third resilient straps wrap about the front and rear of one of the user's legs, while the second and fourth straps wrap about the front and rear of the user's other leg. Once the device is properly attached to the user's body, the user may exercise while the resilient straps apply resistance to the motion of his or her legs. The constant resistance exercises the muscles in the user's legs and ultimately increases the strength of the user's legs.

[0036] An alternate embodiment of the present invention is disclosed in FIG. 5. This embodiment is identical to the embodiment previously described with the exception that it is provided with fifth and sixth resilient straps 72, 75 which the user may grasp to exercise his or her upper body. Specifically, the fifth resilient strap 72 includes a clip 38 at its first end 77 and a threaded fastener 90 at its other end. The clip 38 is releasably secured to a fifth attachment loop 78 secured to the belt 12. Similarly, the sixth resilient strap 75 includes a clip 38 at its first end 73 and a threaded fastener 90 at its other end. The clip 38 is releasably secured to a sixth attachment loop 74 secured to the belt 12. Handles 82, 84 having mating threaded fasteners 91 on the resilient straps 86, 88 extending therefrom. Threaded fasteners 90 may be connected to threaded fasteners 91 to secure the handles to the belt 12.

[0037] In use, an individual may grip the handles of the fifth and sixth resilient straps as he or she exercises with the device attached about his or her waist. The additional resistance straps help a user exercise his or her upper body while exercising his or her lower body with the resilient straps.

[0038] Still further as shown in FIG. 6, a jump rope 100 is shown having a series of weighted threaded fasteners 95 on the ends thereof. These fasteners are similar to threaded fasteners 90 on the ends of resilient straps 72 and 75 and can be connected thereto. Once connected a user can jump rope while using the training device of the present invention.

[0039] As shown the attachment loops may be of various shaped, however, circular are the preferred embodiment.

[0040] While the preferred embodiments have been shown and described, it will be understood that there is no intent to limit the invention by such disclosure, but rather, is intended to cover all modifications and alternate constructions falling within the spirit and scope of the invention as defined in the appended claims.