Title:
Sole with elastic and vented buffer tubes
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A sole having high elasticity for a cushion-type shoe is provided. A plurality of elastic and vented buffer tubes are arranged on a top of the sole to be slightly raised from the sole and thereby form a wave-shaped top surface for the sole to massage a wearer's foot when the wearer walks. A duct having an inner part in the form of a communicating pipe for connecting to open ends of the buffer tubes and an outer part directed toward an outside of the sole. When the buffer tubes are compressed and squeezed, air in the buffer tubes are discharged via the duct; and when the buffer tubes are released from any pressure, they automatically recover from the compressed state and air outside the sole is sucked into the buffer tubes via the duct. Therefore, the buffer tubes provide the sole not only with good buffer and shock absorption ability but also excellent elasticity and bounce.



Inventors:
Chen, Shu-fen (US)
Application Number:
09/826917
Publication Date:
10/10/2002
Filing Date:
04/06/2001
Assignee:
CHEN SHU-FEN
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
36/29
International Classes:
A43B7/08; A43B13/20; (IPC1-7): A43B13/20
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
BAYS, MARIE D
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
ROSENBERG, KLEIN & LEE (ELLICOTT CITY, MD, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A sole with elastic and vented buffer tubes, comprising: a sole; a plurality of hollow buffer tubes made of an elastic material and being parallelly arranged on a top of said sole, and each of said buffer tubes being provided at an upper part with a plurality of vent holes; and a duct having an inner part in the form of a communicating pipe for connecting to open ends of said buffer tubes, and an outer part directed toward a peripheral edge of said sole to end at an outside of said sole.

2. The sole as claimed in claim 1, wherein said buffer tubes are lengthwise arranged side by side on said sole.

3. The sole as claimed in claim 1, wherein said buffer tubes are transversely arranged on said sole at predetermined intervals.

4. The sole as claimed in claim 1, wherein said buffer tubes are directly associated with said sole.

5. The sole as claimed in claim 1, wherein said buffer tubes are associated with an insole removably disposed above said sole.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] The present invention relates to a sole with elastic and vented buffer tubes, and more particularly to a sole that provides not only good buffer capacity and shock absorption ability but also excellent elasticity.

[0002] Cushion-type shoes are developed to protect a wearer's ankle against sprain and other types of injury during walking or exercising. Most currently available cushion-type shoes have soles that all provide a certain degree of buffer capacity and shock absorption ability, although they have different structural designs.

[0003] FIG. 1 shows a sole A1 for cushion-type shoes as disclosed in Taiwanese Patent Application No. 87209368. The sole A1 defines an open-topped cavity that has a checkered internal structure to provide a plurality of hollow compartments A2. Air cushions A3 are positioned on the checkered structure to separately seated on the hollow compartments A2 and form a buffering layer. With the air cushions A3, a heavy pressure applied on the sole by a wearer in walking or jumping is lessened and any shock caused by such heavy pressure is absorbed.

[0004] FIG. 2 shows a heel for cushion-type shoes as disclosed in Taiwanese Patent Application No. 87206867. The heel consists of two generally D-shaped members B1 and a generally U-shaped member B2 made of a heat-melting plastic material and sandwiched between the two D-shaped members B1. Such heel increases buffer capacity and shock absorption ability of a shoe at the heel.

[0005] Both of the above-mentioned sole and heel for conventional cushion-type shoes are structurally characterized in the ability of buffering an impact on a wearer's sole and heel when the wearer walks or jumps. The checkered sole A1 associated with the air cushions A3 is further characterized in its shock absorption ability. It is noted that either the above-described sole or heel for the conventional cushion-type shoes does not provide significant elasticity. That is, these sole and heel only buffer a downward pressure but do not produce an upward bouncing force. The conventional cushion-type shoes with these sole or heel are therefore not perfect in terms of the elasticity of the sole thereof.

[0006] It is therefore desirable to develop a sole for shoes that provides not only good buffer capacity and shock absorption ability but also excellent elasticity.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0007] A primary object of the present invention is to provide a sole having elastic and vented buffer tubes associated therewith, so that the sole provides good buffer capacity and shock absorption ability as well as excellent elasticity and bounce.

[0008] Another object of the present invention is to provide a sole with which a plurality of elastic and vented buffer tubes are associated to be slightly raised from the sole and form a wave-shaped top surface for the sole, so that the sole massages a wearer's foot when the wearer is walking.

[0009] A further object of the present invention is to provide a sole having a plurality of elastic and vented buffer tubes associated therewith and a duct connected to an open end of the buffer tubes to communicate the tubes with one another and with a space outside the sole, such that air is guided into or out of the buffer tubes via the duct, making the sole well ventilative.

[0010] A still further object of the present invention is to provide elastic and vented buffer tubes that are adapted to associate with an insole and can therefore be used with all types of shoes.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0011] The structure and the technical means adopted by the present invention to achieve the above and other objects can be best understood by referring to the following detailed description of the preferred embodiments and the accompanying drawings, wherein

[0012] FIG. 1 is an exploded perspective of a sole for conventional cushion-type shoes;

[0013] FIG. 2 is an exploded perspective of a heel for conventional cushion-type shoes;

[0014] FIG. 3 is an exploded perspective of a sole according to the present invention;

[0015] FIG. 4 is a top plan view of the sole of the present invention;

[0016] FIG. 5 is a longitudinal sectional view of the sole of FIG. 4;

[0017] FIG. 6 is a cross sectional view showing elastic buffer tubes associated with the sole of the present invention are slightly raised from a top of the sole; and

[0018] FIG. 7 shows another embodiment of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0019] Please refer to FIGS. 3 through 6. A sole with elastic and vented buffer tubes according to the present invention mainly includes a sole 1, a plurality of buffer tubes 2, and a duct 3.

[0020] The sole 1 forms a bottom layer of a shoe (not shown) and has an upward wall portion 11 extended along an outer peripheral edge of the sole 1. The buffer tubes 2 are hollow tubes made of an elastic material such as rubber or other similar material and are lengthwise arranged side by side in a top space of the sole 1 enclosed in the wall portion 11. The number of the buffer tubes 2 is variable depending on actual need. Each of the buffer tubes 2 is provided at an upper part with a plurality of vent holes 21. The duct 3 is adapted to connect at an inner part in the form of a communicating pipe to an open end of the buffer tubes 2, so that inner spaces of the buffer tubes 2 are communicable with one another via the duct 3. An outer part of the duct 3 is directed toward the wall portion 11 to end at an outside of the wall portion 11.

[0021] When the buffer tubes 2 lengthwise arranged in the top space of the sole 1 are subjected to a downward pressure, they are compressed and squeezed. At this point, a part of air in the buffer tubes 2 is discharged via the vent holes 21 into the shoe while other part of the air is discharged via the inner part of the duct 3 into a space outside the sole 1. And, when the downward pressure is removed, the elastic buffer tubes 2 automatically recover from the compressed state and air outside the sole 1 is sucked into the buffer tubes 2 via the outer part of the duct 3 that is communicable with the external space. Thus, the elastic buffer tubes 2 allow good air ventilation thereof and provide good buffer and shock absorption effect. Moreover, since the buffer tubes 2 are made of elastic material, they provide good bounce when a wearer jumps. The bounce provided by the elastic buffer tubes 2 makes the present invention different from and superior to other soles and heels for conventional cushion-type shoes.

[0022] The buffer tubes 2 are lengthwise arranged in the top space of the sole 1 to be slightly raised from the sole 1 and thereby form a wave-shaped top surface for the sole 1. This wave-shaped top surface contacts with and massages the wearer's sole when the wearer walks.

[0023] FIG. 7 shows a sole with elastic and vented buffer tubes according to another embodiment of the present invention. In this embodiment, the elastic buffer tubes 2 are transversely and parallelly arranged on the top of the sole 1. The buffer tubes 2 may be spaced from one another at predetermined intervals depending on actual need in order to effectively provide good buffer and shock absorption while produce good bounce.

[0024] With the elastic buffer tubes 2 and the duct 3 arranged on the sole 1 in the above-described manners, the sole 1 provides not only good buffer capacity and shock absorption ability but also excellent bounce, making the sole of the present invention superior to the soles and heels for conventional cushion-type shoes. Moreover, the buffer tubes 2 form a wave-shaped top surface of the sole 1 to massage a wearer's foot, making the sole of the present invention practical for use.