Title:
Basketball shooting training device
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A basketball shooting training device consisting of flexible sheet having a basketball facing side, a palm contact side, an upper end, a lower end, a right side, and a left side; sheet tensioning side extensions extending leftwardly and rightwardly from the left and right sides of the flexible sheet, the side extensions being adapted, through attachment of hook and loop fasteners, for encircling the hand and for securing the palm contact side of the flexible sheet in contact with the palm of a basketball player's hand; and consisting of a finger biasing strap extending upwardly from the flexible sheet, the finger biasing strap being adapted for, engaging the index finger of such hand, and for forwardly thrusting such finger.



Inventors:
Kreutzer, Gerald Wayne (Derby, KS, US)
Application Number:
09/739153
Publication Date:
06/20/2002
Filing Date:
12/18/2000
Assignee:
GORDON PHILLIP STEWART
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63B69/00; (IPC1-7): A63B69/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
ARYANPOUR, MITRA
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Kenneth H. Jack (Wichita, KS, US)
Claims:

I claim:



1. A basketball shooting training device comprising: (a) a flexible sheet having a basketball facing side, a palm contact side, an upper end, lower end, a right side, and a left side; (b) sheet tensioning means extending leftwardly and rightwardly from the left and right sides of the flexible sheet, the sheet tensioning means being adapted for securing the palm contact side of the flexible sheet in contact with the palm of a basketball player's hand; and (c) finger biasing means extending upwardly from the flexible sheet, the finger biasing means being adapted for, upon such securing of the palm contact side, engaging the index finger of such hand, and for forwardly thrusting such finger.

2. The basketball shooting training device of claim 1 wherein the leftward and rightward extensions of the sheet tensioning means in combination with the flexible sheet are adapted to encircle the palmar and dorsal aspects of such hand, such device further comprising first attaching means adapted for interconnecting said leftward and rightward extensions.

3. The basketball shooting training device of claim 2 wherein the finger biasing means comprises a strap having a proximal end and a distal end, the proximal end of the strap being fixedly attached to the flexible sheet.

4. The basketball shooting training device of claim 3 wherein the finger biasing means further comprises a second attaching means adapted for interconnecting the distal end of the strap and the flexible sheet.

5. The basketball shooting training device of claim 4 further comprising at least a first finger loop fixedly attached to the upper end of the flexible sheet.

6. The basketball shooting training device of claim 5 wherein the flexible sheet has a thumb receiving aperture therethrough.

7. The basketball shooting training device of claim 6 further comprising a ball imbalancing pad fixedly attached to the basketball facing side of the flexible sheet.

8. The basketball shooting training device of claim 7 wherein the at least first finger loop is positioned for receiving the middle finger of such hand, and further comprising a second finger loop fixedly attached to the upper end of the flexible sheet, the second finger loop being positioned for receiving the ring finger of such hand.

9. The basketball training device of claim 4 wherein the first attaching means comprises a hook and loop fastener.

10. The basketball training device of claim 9 wherein the second attaching means comprises a hook and loop fastener.

11. The basketball training device of claim 4 wherein the first and second attaching means comprise a fastener selected from the group of buttons, snaps, zippers, hook and loop fasteners, lacings, magnetic fasteners, buckles, ridge and snap channel fasteners, and hook and eye fasteners.

12. The basketball training device of claim 11 wherein the flexible sheet comprises neoprene.

13. The basketball training device of claim 11 wherein the flexible sheet comprises a material selected from the group of neoprene, neoprene cloth inserted sheets, woven fabric, knitted fabric, vinyl, synthetic rubber, natural rubber, synthetic leather, and natural leather.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0001] This invention relates to apparatus for training basketball players to properly shoot a basketball. More particularly, this invention relates to such apparatus which provides structure promoting proper shooting hand finger positioning upon shooting a basketball.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] When a basketball player executes a set shot or a jump shot, he or she typically performs a multiple stage shooting stroke which is intended to accurately propel a basketball through an arc whose path extends through the hoop of a basketball goal. In the initial stage of such shooting stroke, the basketball is cradled in the player's palm or palms, and the ball is driven or accelerated through arm motion in the direction of the hoop. In the latter stage of such basketball shooting stroke, accelerative pressure against the ball is reduced, allowing the final instant of contact of the hand with the ball to “fine tune” the ball's trajectory. In such final phase of a shooting stroke, the tip or tips of one or more of the basketball player's fingers typically serve as a final ball contact point. Ideally, a right-handed basketball player will consistently allow only the tip of the index finger of his or her right hand to serve as such final ball contact point.

[0003] The index finger is ideally utilized as a final ball contact point because its natural extension is more closely aligned with the natural extension of the forearm than any of the other fingers. By allowing the index finger to serve as the final contact point, a natural hand positioning with respect to the forearm while shooting is promoted.

[0004] Inexperienced basketball players are known to erroneously allow fingers other than the index finger to serve as a final ball contact point; and they commonly fail to consistently utilize a single finger as a final ball contact point upon shooting basketballs. Such improper basketball shooting technique markedly slows progress in learning to accurately shoot a basketball. The instant inventive basketball training device promotes proper basketball shooting technique by causing a perceptible undesirable awkwardness in shooting whenever an inexperienced basketball player attempts to shoot a basketball without allowing the tip of his or her index finger to serve as the final ball contact point. The instant invention promotes such result by providing a glove-like finger positioning article having structure adapted for forwardly biasing or thrusting the index finger of the shooting hand, and by providing structure which awkwardly imbalances a basketball upon utilizing fingers other than the index finger as a final ball contact point.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0005] A primary structural component of the instant inventive basketball shooting training device comprises a flexible sheet fitted and sized for covering the palmar aspect of a basketball player's shooting hand. Preferably, the flexible sheet comprises a neoprene cloth inserted sheet consisting of an approximately {fraction (3/16)}″ thick layer of neoprene covered on both sides by adhesively applied layers of polyester cloth. Such sheet material readily and securely receives nylon thread stitching for attachment of other structures. Other flexible sheet materials which may suitably be substituted for a neoprene cloth inserted sheet include vinyl, woven fabric, knitted fabric, synthetic rubber, natural rubber, synthetic leather and natural leather.

[0006] In operation of the present inventive device, a side of the flexible sheet is necessarily securely positioned by tensioning means against the palm of such basketball player's hand, such side being designated as a palm contact side of the flexible sheet. A preferred tensioning means for achieving such secure contact is configuration of left and right sides of the flexible sheet to form left and right hand encircling straps, such straps having lengths sufficient to allow their ends to overlap over the dorsal aspect of such player's hand. The tensioning means preferably further comprises a hook and loop fastener, commonly known by the trade term “VELCRO”, such fastener preferably being mounted upon such overlapped ends.

[0007] Instead of configuring the left and right sides of the flexible sheet to form left and right strap extensions, the tensioning means may suitably comprise separate cords, belts or straps extending leftwardly and rightwardly from such sides. Alternately, an elastic band extending continuously from the left side of the flexible sheet over it palm contact side, and attaching to the right side of the flexible sheet, may be suitably utilized as tensioning means. Suitable alternate attaching means for interconnecting the preferred straps tensioning means include buttons, snaps, zippers, hook and loop fasteners, lacings, magnetic fasteners, buckles, snap channel and ridge combinations, and hook and eye combinations.

[0008] The primary operative structure of the instant inventive basketball shooting training device comprises index finger biasing means adapted for forwardly thrusting or biasing the index finger of the hand upon which the device is mounted. A preferred index finger biasing means comprises a flexible strap having a distal end and a proximal end, the proximal end of the strap being fixedly mounted upon an upper end of the flexible sheet. Preferably, the distal end of such strap is provided with attaching means so that, upon drawing the strap around the index finger of a wearer's hand, the distal end of said strap may be stretched rearwardly and be securely attached to the flexible sheet over the dorsal aspect of the wearer's hand. Drawing strap in such manner applies a pulling force to the index finger, forwardly bending and forwardly biasing such finger. Such forward bias helps assure that the index finger correctly serves a final guiding contact point in basketball shooting. The attaching means mounted upon the distal end of the strap preferably comprises a hook pad capable of engaging with the preferred hook and loop pad of the leftwardly and rightwardly extending hand encircling straps.

[0009] In order to enhance stability of the flexible sheet as it is worn upon a basketball player's hand, it is preferable that such sheet incorporate a middle finger loop attached to its upper end, a ring finger loop attached to its upper end, and include a thumb receiving aperture.

[0010] Preferably, a raised basketball imbalancing pad is fixedly attached to the basketball facing side of the flexible sheet, such pad being positioned to cause awkward imbalancing of the basketball upon improper utilization of the wearer's middle or ring finger as a final ball contact point.

[0011] Use of the instant inventive basketball shooting training device during basketball practice or informal play trains a basketball player to appropriately and consistently utilize the tip of his or her index finger as the final ball contact point upon shooting a set shot or jump shot; resulting in enhanced shooting accuracy.

[0012] Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to provide a basketball shooting training device adapted to be securely mounted upon the shooting hand of a basketball player.

[0013] It is a further object of the present invention to provide such a device adapted to forwardly thrust or bias the index finger of such shooting hand, training such player to consistently utilize the tip of such finger as a final ball contact point.

[0014] It is a further object of the present invention to provide such a device incorporating a raised ball imbalancing pad, positioned for further discouraging such player from utilizing fingers other than the ball shooting hand index finger as a final ball contact point.

[0015] Other and further objects, benefits, and advantages of the present invention will become known to those skilled in the art upon review of the Detailed Description which follows, and upon review of the appended drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0016] FIG. 1 is a view of the palm contact side of the instant inventive basketball shooting training device.

[0017] FIG. 2 is a view of the opposite basketball facing side of the device depicted in FIG. 1.

[0018] FIG. 3 is a view of the device as depicted in FIG. 1, the view further showing fingers of a basketball player's hand extending through finger loops.

[0019] FIG. 4 is a reverse of the view of FIG. 3, the view further showing the thumb of such hand extending through a thumb receiving aperture.

[0020] FIG. 5 redepicts the view of FIG. 3, further showing engagement of a strap with the index finger of such hand, and further showing the thumb extension depicted in FIG. 4.

[0021] FIG. 6 is a basketball facing side view of the inventive device shown mounted upon such basketball player's hand.

[0022] FIG. 7 is a side view of the inventive device shown mounted upon such basketball player's hand.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

[0023] Referring now to the drawings, and in particular to FIG. 1, the instant inventive basketball shooting training device is referred to generally by reference arrow 1 consisting of a flexible sheet 24, preferably comprising elastic neoprene, such sheet preferably having a rightwardly extending strap section 16 and a leftwardly extending strap section 17. Preferably, the central area of such flexible sheet 24 is fitted for covering the palm of a basketball player's hand, the side viewed in FIG. 1 being a palm contacting side.

[0024] Preferably, the rightwardly extending and leftwardly extending strap sections 16 and 17 are of sufficient length to allow them to be stretched around a user's hand; the left and right ends thereof overlapping over the dorsal aspect of a user's hand. Referring simultaneously to FIGS. 1 and 2, hook pad 5 and loop pad 8, commonly referred to as a VELCRO fastener, are preferably utilized for interconnecting leftwardly extending and rightwardly extending straps 16 and 17. The hook and loop pads 5 and 8 in combination with straps 16 and 17 function as tensioning means, providing secure contact of the palm contact side of the flexible sheet 24 onto the palm of a user's hand. Referring further simultaneously to FIGS. 1 and 2, hook pad 5 and loop pad 8 are preferably fixedly attached to the flexible sheet 24 by sewn stitchings 18 and 20.

[0025] Referring further simultaneously to FIGS. 1 and 2, the upper end of the flexible sheet 24 is preferably configured to form a ring finger receiving loop 3 and a middle finger receiving loop 4, the ends 21 and 22 of such loops being fixedly secured to the flexible sheet by sewn stitching. Loops 3 and 4 serve the function of further stabilizing the flexible sheet 24 upon a user's hand. Referring to FIG. 1, a thumb receiving aperture 7 extending through the flexible sheet 24 is preferably provided for further stabilization of the flexible sheet 24 upon a user's hand.

[0026] Referring simultaneously to FIGS. 1 and 2, finger biasing means preferably comprising a flexible finger biasing strap 6 is fixedly attached to the flexible sheet 24 by sewn stitching 23 at its proximal end. The finger biasing strap 6 preferably has at its distal end a hook pad 9 sewn in place by stitching 19, the hook pad 9 being engageable with loop pad 8.

[0027] Referring further simultaneously to FIGS. 1 and 2, a bulbous ball imbalancing pad 10 is preferably fixedly attached to the ball facing side of the flexible sheet 24 by sewn stitching 25.

[0028] Referring to FIG. 3, the initial step in donning the instant inventive basketball shooting training device 1 is respective extension of the middle finger 12 and ring finger 13 of a basketball player's hand 11 through middle finger receiving loop 4 and ring finger receiving loop 3. Thereafter, referring simultaneously to FIGS. 4 and 5, the thumb 14 of hand 11 is extended through thumb receiving aperture 7. Strap 6 is then wrapped in a clockwise (or counter-clockwise for a left-handed device, not depicted) around index finger 15. The distal end of strap 6 is then stretched rearwardly over the dorsal aspect of hand 11 while leftwardly extending and rightwardly extending straps 17 and 16 are stretched over the dorsal aspect of hand 11 in an overlapping fashion. The ends of straps 6, 16, and 17 positioned in strata or layers, allowing their hook and loop pads 9, 5, and 8 to be securely conjoined.

[0029] Referring simultaneously to FIGS. 6 and 7, strap 6 upon winding around index finger 15 and upon anchoring of its distal end over the dorsal aspect of hand 11, provides a constant pulling force upon finger 15. Such pulling force urges or biasing said finger in a forwardly tilted and bent configuration. After long and continuous use of the instant inventive device, such biasing of the tip of index finger 15 trains the player to properly utilize such finger as a final contact point in shooting a basketball 24.

[0030] Referring to FIG. 6, the raised ball imbalancing pad 10 serves the function of further discouraging a wearer from improperly utilizing middle finger 12 or ring finger 13 as a final ball contact point. Pad 10 accomplishes such result by awkwardly tilting the ball with respect to fingers 12 and 13 in the event such fingers are used.

[0031] While the principles of the invention have been made clear in the above illustrative embodiment, those skilled in the art may make modifications in the structure, arrangement, portions and components of the invention without departing from those principles. Accordingly, it is intended that the description and drawings be interpreted as illustrative and not in the limiting sense, and that the invention be given a scope commensurate with the appended claims.





 
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