Title:
Resistance device for an exercise apparatus
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
In a resistance device for providing a resisting force to an exercise apparatus, a mounting plate is mounted fixedly on the exercise apparatus, and is disposed adjacent to a flywheel mounted rotatably on an axle. An actuating rod is mounted pivotally on the mounting plate, and is rotatable about a first axis parallel to the axle. A magnetic member includes an arched arm that is disposed so as to extend along a portion of an annular magnetically permeable surface of the flywheel and that has a pivot end connected pivotally to the mounting plate, and a movable end opposite to the pivot end and mounted movably on a coupling end portion of the actuating rod. Magnetic pieces are mounted on the arched arm and are disposed between the flywheel and the arched arm. The magnetic member is rotatable about a second axis parallel to the first axis.



Inventors:
Wu, Tsung-hsiung (Chang-Hua City, TW)
Application Number:
10/611055
Publication Date:
01/06/2005
Filing Date:
07/01/2003
Assignee:
WU TSUNG-HSIUNG
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
482/63
International Classes:
A63B21/005; A63B21/22; (IPC1-7): A63B22/06
View Patent Images:
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20010036885Compact shuffle leg exerciserNovember, 2001John Jr. et al.
20030119632Appliance to prevent locked fingers during sleep and for exercising gripJune, 2003Archuleta
20090054211TRAMPOLINE HAVING CUSHION MECHANISMFebruary, 2009Chiu
20070010376Medical therapeutic treadmill capable of automatically adjusting its rail heightJanuary, 2007Wu et al.
20070099774"ADJUSTABLE WEIGHTED BELT AND A METHOD FOR USING THE SAME"May, 2007Bruback
20070027004ADJUSTABLE TWO-LEGGED STILT WITH CATCH MECHANISMFebruary, 2007Novara



Primary Examiner:
NGUYEN, TAM M
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BRINKS HOFER GILSON & LIONE (Chicago, IL, US)
Claims:
1. A resistance device for providing a resisting force to an exercise apparatus that includes an axle defining an axial direction, and a flywheel mounted rotatably on the axle, the flywheel having an annular magnetically permeable surface and a mounting side, said resistance device comprising: a mounting plate adapted to be mounted fixedly on the exercise apparatus and to be disposed adjacent to the mounting side of the flywheel, said mounting plate having first and second end portions opposite to each other in a transverse direction transverse to the axial direction; an elongate actuating rod having opposite driven and coupling end portions, and an intermediate pivot portion mounted pivotally on said mounting plate and disposed between said driven and coupling end portions, said actuating rod being rotatable relative to said mounting plate about a first axis parallel to the axle; and a magnetic member including an arched arm that is to be disposed so as to extend along a portion of the annular magnetically permeable surface and that has a pivot end connected pivotally to said first end portion of said mounting plate, and a movable end opposite to said pivot end and mounted movably on said coupling end portion of said actuating rod, said magnetic member further including a set of magnetic pieces mounted on said arched arm and adapted to be disposed between the annular magnetically permeable surface of the flywheel and said arched arm, said magnetic member being rotatable relative to said first end portion of said mounting plate about a second axis parallel to the first axis; said actuating rod being capable of being driven to rotate said magnetic member about the second axis for moving said magnetic pieces from a greatest resistance position, where said magnetic pieces are disposed in close proximity to the annular magnetically permeable surface of the flywheel, to a least resistance position, where said magnetic pieces are disposed spacedly apart from the annular magnetically permeable surface of the flywheel.

2. The resistance device as claimed in claim 1, further comprising a biasing member connected between said second end portion of said mounting plate and said coupling end portion of said actuating rod for biasing said actuating rod to rotate about the first axis so as to dispose said magnetic pieces at the greatest resistance position.

3. The resistance device as claimed in claim 1, further comprising a control unit for driving said actuating rod to rotate relative to said mounting plate about the first axis, said control unit being coupled to said driven end portion of said actuating rod and being operable so as to drive said driver end portion of said actuating rod to rotate said magnetic member about the second axis for moving said magnetic pieces from the greatest resistance position to the least resistance position.

4. The resistance device as claimed in claim 3, wherein said control unit includes a pull cord having opposite ends, one of which is connected to said driven end portion of said actuating rod, and a control knob adapted to be mounted rotatably on the exercise apparatus, the other one of said ends of said pull cord being connected to said control knob.

5. The resistance device as claimed in claim 3, wherein said control unit includes a toothed driven member mounted on said driven end portion of said actuating rod; and a drive gear disposed on said mounting plate, meshing with said driven member, and rotatable so as to cause said actuating rod to rotate relative to said mounting plate about the first axis.

6. The resistance device as claimed in claim 5, wherein said control unit further includes a motor for driving rotation of said drive gear.

7. The resistance device as claimed in claim 1, wherein said mounting plate further has a mounting portion disposed between said first and second end portions and adapted to be mounted fixedly on the axle.

8. The resistance device as claimed in claim 1, wherein said coupling end portion of said actuating rod is formed with an arcuate guiding hole, said resistance device further comprising a fastener extending through said guiding hole and engaging said movable end of said arched arm.

9. The resistance device as claimed in claim 1, wherein the first axis forms a first distance with said coupling end portion, and further forms a second distance with said driven end portion, the first distance being shorter than the second distance.

10. The resistance as claimed in claim 9, wherein the first distance is about one-half of the second distance.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The invention relates to a resistance device, more particularly to a resistance device for an exercise apparatus.

2. Description of the Related Art

FIG. 1 illustrates a conventional resistance device 1 for a bicycle exerciser (not shown) that includes an axle 7 and a flywheel 2 mounted rotatably on the axle 7. The flywheel 2 is formed with a compartment for receiving the conventional resistance device 1, and has an inner annular magnetically permeable surface 201. The conventional resistance device 1 includes a mounting plate 3 mounted in the compartment, two magnetic members 4 mounted pivotally on the mounting plate 3, a driving unit 5, and two biasing members 6, each disposed between the mounting plate 3 and one of the magnetic members 4. The mounting plate 3 is formed with a slideway 301. Each of the magnetic members 4 includes an arched arm 401 pivoted to the mounting plate 3 at one end, and a set of magnetic pieces 402 mounted on the arched arm 401 and disposed between the inner annular magnetically permeable surface 201 and the arched arm 401. The driving unit 5 includes a sliding block 501 mounted slidably in the slideway 301, two connecting strips 502, each of which interconnects a corresponding one of the arched arms 401 of the magnetic members 4 and the sliding block 501, and a pull cord 503 connected to the sliding block 501.

When the pull cord 503 is pulled upwardly to drive the sliding block 501 to move upwardly, the magnetic pieces 402 on the arched arms 401 are moved away from the inner annular magnetically permeable surface 201 to reduce a magnetic resistance force applied to the flywheel 2.

However, due to the presence of the biasing members 6, a relatively large force is required for pulling the pull cord 503 when adjusting resistance to rotation of the flywheel 2.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Therefore, the object of the present invention is to provide a resistance device for an exercise apparatus that has a relatively simple construction and that can be easily operated.

According to the present invention, there is provided a resistance device for providing a resisting force to an exercise apparatus that includes an axle defining an axial direction, and a flywheel mounted rotatably on the axle. The flywheel has an annular magnetically permeable surface and a mounting side. The resistance device comprises:

    • a mounting plate adapted to be mounted fixedly on the exercise apparatus and to be disposed adjacent to the mounting side of the flywheel, the mounting plate having first and second end portions opposite to each other in a transverse direction transverse to the axial direction;
    • an elongate actuating rod having opposite driven and coupling end portions, and an intermediate pivot portion mounted pivotally on the mounting plate and disposed between the driven and coupling end portions, the actuating rod being rotatable relative to the mounting plate about a first axis parallel to the axle; and
    • a magnetic member including an arched arm that is to be disposed so as to extend along a portion of the annular magnetically permeable surface and that has a pivot end connected pivotally to the first end portion of the mounting plate, and a movable end opposite to the pivot end and mounted movably on the coupling end portion of the actuating rod, the magnetic member further including a set of magnetic pieces mounted on the arched arm and adapted to be disposed between the annular magnetically permeable surface of the flywheel and the arched arm, the magnetic member being rotatable relative to the first end portion of the mounting plate about a second axis parallel to the first axis.

The actuating rod is capable of being driven to rotate the magnetic member about the second axis for moving the magnetic pieces from a greatest resistance position, where the magnetic pieces are disposed in close proximity to the annular magnetically permeable surface of the flywheel, to a least resistance position, where the magnetic pieces are disposed spacedly apart from the annular magnetically permeable surface of the flywheel.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

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

FIG. 1 is a schematic front sectional view of a conventional resistance device for a bicycle exerciser;

FIG. 2 is an exploded perspective view showing the first preferred embodiment of a resistance device for an exercise apparatus according to the present invention;

FIG. 3 is a schematic front view showing the first preferred embodiment;

FIG. 4 is a schematic sectional view of FIG. 3 taken along line IV-IV;

FIG. 5 is a schematic front view showing the first preferred embodiment when magnetic pieces thereof are disposed at a least resistance position;

FIG. 6 is a schematic view showing the first preferred embodiment when assembled on a bicycle exerciser;

FIG. 7 is an exploded perspective view showing the second preferred embodiment of a resistance device for an exercise apparatus according to the present invention;

FIG. 8 is a schematic front view showing the second preferred embodiment; and

FIG. 9 is a schematic front view showing the second preferred embodiment when magnetic pieces thereof are disposed at a least resistance position.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

Before the present invention is described in greater detail, it should be noted that like elements are denoted by the same reference numerals throughout the disclosure.

Referring to FIG. 2, according to the first preferred embodiment of this invention, a resistance device 100 for providing a resistance force to an exercise apparatus is shown. In this embodiment, the exercise apparatus is a bicycle exerciser (see FIG. 6), and includes an axle 220 defining an axial direction (A), and a flywheel 210 mounted rotatably on the axle 220. The flywheel 210 has an outer annular magnetically permeable surface 230 and a mounting side 240 transverse to the axial direction (A). The resistance device 100 includes a mounting plate 10, an elongate actuating rod 30, a magnetic member 20, a biasing member 50, and a control unit 40.

The mounting plate 10 is adapted to be mounted fixedly on a frame 200 of the exercise apparatus and to be disposed adjacent to the mounting side 240 of the flywheel 210. The mounting plate 10 has first and second end portions 11, 12 opposite to each other in a transverse direction (B) transverse to the axial direction (A), and a mounting portion 13 disposed between the first and second end portions 11, 12 and adapted to be mounted fixedly on the axle 220. The mounting plate 10 is formed with a positioning lug 14 between the first end portion 11 and the mounting portion 13, and a stop piece 15 mounted with a stop screw 150.

The actuating rod 30 has opposite driven and coupling end portions 32, 33, and an intermediate pivot portion 31 mounted pivotally on the mounting plate 10 by means of a screw fastener 310 that extends through a pivot hole in the intermediate pivot portion 31 and that engages the mounting plate 10. The driven end portion 32 is formed with a coupling piece 321. The coupling end portion 33 is formed with an arcuate guiding hole 331. The actuating rod 30 further has an abutting piece 301 corresponding to the stop piece 15 on the mounting plate 10. The actuating rod 30 is rotatable relative to the mounting plate 10 about a first axis (a) parallel to the axle 220. In this embodiment, the first axis (a) forms a first distance (L1) with the guiding hole 331, and further forms a second distance (L2) with the coupling piece 321. The first distance (L1) is shorter than the second distance (L2) and is preferably about one-half of the second distance (L2), as shown in FIG. 3.

The magnetic member 20 includes an arched arm 21 and a set of magnetic pieces 22. The arched arm 21 is to be disposed so as to extend along a portion of the annular magnetically permeable surface 230, and has a pivot end 211 connected pivotally to the first end portion 11 of the mounting plate 10 by means of a screw fastener extending through a pivot hole in the first end portion 11 and engaging the pivot end 211, and a movable end 212 opposite to the pivot end 211 and mounted movably on the coupling end portion 33 of the actuating rod 30 by means of a screw fastener 214 extending through the guiding hole 331 and engaging the movable end 212 of the arched arm 21. The magnetic pieces 22 are mounted on the arched arm 21 and are adapted to be disposed between the annular magnetically permeable surface 230 of the flywheel 210 and the arched arm 21. The magnetic member 20 is rotatable relative to the first end portion 11 of the mounting plate 10 about a second axis (b) parallel to the first axis (a).

The control unit 40 drives the actuating rod 30 to rotate relative to the mounting plate 10 about the first axis (a). The control unit 40 is coupled to the driven end portion 32 of the actuating rod 30, and is operable so as to drive the driven end portion 32 of the actuating rod 30 to rotate the magnetic member 20 about the second axis (b) for moving the magnetic pieces 22 from a greatest resistance position, where the magnetic pieces 22 are disposed in close proximity to the annular magnetically permeable surface 230 of the flywheel 210 (see FIGS. 3 and 4) and where the stop screw 150 mounted on the stop piece 15 abuts against the abutting piece 301 of the actuating rod 30 (see FIG. 3), to a least resistance position, where the magnetic pieces 22 are disposed spacedly apart from the annular magnetically permeable surface 230 of the flywheel 210, as shown in FIG. 5. In this embodiment, the control unit 40 includes a pull cord 42 and a control knob 41. As shown in FIG. 6, the pull cord 41 has opposite ends 421, 422. The end 421 passes through the positioning lug 14 on the mounting plate 10 and is connected to the coupling piece 321 at the driven end portion 32 of the actuating rod 30. The control knob 41 is adapted to be mounted rotatably on the frame 200 of the exercise apparatus. The other end 422 of the pull cord 42 is connected to the control knob 41 in a conventional manner. As such, the control knob 41 can be operated to retract the pull cord 41 so as to drive the actuating rod 30 to rotate about the first axis (a) such that the magnetic member 20 can be driven to rotate about the second axis (b) for enabling the magnetic pieces 22 to move away from the annular magnetically permeable surface 230 of the flywheel 210 so as to reduce the magnetic resistance force between the magnetic pieces 22 and the annular magnetically permeable surface 230.

The biasing member 50, such as a torsion spring, is connected between the second end portion 12 of the mounting plate 10 and the coupling end portion 33 of the actuating rod 30, and biases the actuating rod 30 to rotate about the first axis (a) so as to dispose the magnetic pieces 22 at the greatest resistance position.

It is noted that the arrangement of the first axis (a) relative to the guiding hole 331 and the coupling piece 321 facilitates operation of the control unit 40 when adjusting the resistance to rotation of the flywheel 210. Moreover, since the mounting plate 10 can be fixed on the axle 220, the resistance device 100 can be secured on the frame 200 when the axle 220 is installed on the latter, thereby facilitating assembly.

FIGS. 7 to 9 illustrate the second preferred embodiment of a resistance device 100′ for an exercise apparatus according to this invention, which is a modification of the first preferred embodiment. Unlike the previous embodiment, the control unit 40′ includes a toothed driven member 42′ and a drive gear 411′. The toothed driven member 42′ is mounted on the coupling piece 321 at the driven end portion 32 of the actuating rod 30. The drive gear 411′ is disposed on the mounting plate 10, meshes with the driven member 42′, and is rotatable so as to cause the actuating rod 30 to rotate relative to the mounting plate 10 about the first axis (a). The control unit 40′ further includes a motor 41′ for driving rotation of the drive gear 411′.

To sum up, the resistance device 100, 100′ of this invention has a relatively simple construction, and can be easily operated as compared to the prior art.

While the present invention has been described in connection with what is considered the most practical and preferred embodiments, it is understood that this invention is not limited to the disclosed embodiments 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.





 
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