The Running Training Machine
Kind Code:

The invention is a stationary running machine for indoor use. It offers a natural running gait to the user and also significantly lower impact than when running on a normal running surface. It also has no rotating parts. It uses a spring system to offer an upward force vector to reduce the effective impact weight of the user. By lifting the body up during running, the invention makes it easier for the user to run and reduces the strike impact. The invention also acts to bring the user back to their initial position after each step so that there is no need for a moving conveyor belt, like used in a treadmill, to keep the user in a central position on the machine while the user is running on the machine. The invention may include a suitable running ramp, that can further offer cushioning and/or rebounding properties.

Miers, David John (Torquay, Victoria, AU)
Application Number:
Publication Date:
Filing Date:
Miers, Mr. David John (torquay, Victoria, AU)
Primary Class:
International Classes:
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20100081551Yoga Asana StandApril, 2010Harley
20090286658Multi-Angle Incline Dumbbell Bench PressNovember, 2009James
20090197741Hand, Wrist and Arm Therapy and ExercisingAugust, 2009Poillucci et al.
20080051260EXERCISE DEVICE WITH PIVOTING ASSEMBLYFebruary, 2008Simonson et al.
20040204293Exercise apparatus and a brake mechanism thereforOctober, 2004Andreasen
20090062089Multi-Functional Exercise Apparatus with Adjustable ResistanceMarch, 2009Suiter
20070179021Training ballAugust, 2007Wang
20020147084Exerciser for abdominal portion of the userOctober, 2002Liang
20040219498Training apparatus and methodsNovember, 2004Davidson
20090156375Dual-purpose dumbbellJune, 2009Chiang

Attorney, Agent or Firm:
David Miers (San Francisco, CA, US)
What is claimed is:

1. A Band that has spring, memory or elastic properties or is connected to springs or materials or objects with spring, memory or elastic properties that hangs below the two connection point at its ends and that can be used to hold a person back when running or walking.

2. A Band as described in claim 1 that may have a width from 5 cms to 50 cms and in length from 5 cms to 3 metres.

3. A Band as described in claim 1 or 2 that has a secondary band with spring or elastic properties or is connected to materials or objects that have spring or elastic properties.

4. A Band as described in claim 3 that has a secondary band that may vary in width from 5 cms to 50 cms and in length from 5 cms to 3 metres.

5. A Band as described in any of claims 1-4 that has or is amenable to having connections at its ends to eyelets or hooks or clips that enable it to be used in doorways, or connected to frames, or to beams, or to straps that go over bars and or that enable it to be connected to objects like those described in claim 6.

6. A Band as described in any of claims 1-5 that has a rigid or semi-rigid transverse section attached or inclusive in the Band at or near both its ends.

7. A band as described in claim 6 that has the rigid section attached with adhesive tape and stitching and or staples or by any method that uses a material to go through the tape and the Band.

8. A length of padded material and or rubber or soft material 5 to 50 cms long to which is connected to one, two or more straps that can go over the top of a door and the door be closed on the straps, to which objects (like the Band described in any of claims 1-7) can be connected to.

9. The object claimed in claim 8 when used with any of the Bands claimed in claims 1-7.

10. An angled ramp that that it can be used with a Band as described in any of the claims 1-7, with width and breadth dimensions of the ramp being from 20 cms to 3 metres (as allocated for each individual user on the ramp) with an angle of the zone for running of between 0 and 60 degrees as measured form the horizontal.

11. An angled ramp as described in claim 10 that has cushioning or spring or rebounding properties.

12. An angled ramp as described in claim 11 with its spring or rebounding properties created by using materials for the area that the user will run on that have spring or cushioning properties.

13. An angled ramp as described in claim 8 with its spring or rebounding properties created by using springs or elastic materials in the joins of the construction of the ramp.

14. An angled ramp as described in claim 8 with its spring or rebounding properties created by using springs or elastic materials in the construction of the sections that support the area that the user runs on.

15. An angled ramp as described in claim 8 with any permutation or combination of the features described in claims 12-14.

16. A supporting frame to hold a band as described in any of the claims 1-7 such that the ends of the band can be held by the frame above 0.5 metre above the running surface and so that the midsection of the band can be below the height of the ends of the band.

17. A supporting frame as described in claim 16 that has hooks or eyelets or holes to which a band as claimed in claims 1-7 can directly or indirectly be attached.


Impact on joints due to running is a major problem for those trying to keep fit that have had knee or ankle problems, are overweight or degenerative problems. Yet running is the exercise we are most evolved to suit. We love to be able to run.

To take advantage of climatic protection of indoors, treadmills are extremely popular. However, like outdoor running surfaces, treadmills do not eleviate the impact problems and many people cannot use treadmills as a consequence.

The propriosensis difficulties due the moving floor also mean treadmills unnerve some people and can be dangerous when the user has injuries or physical limitations.

The invention aims to substantially reduce the impact while still offering a natural running gait so that many more people can enjoy running.


The invention uses a spring system to offer an upward force vector to reduce the effective impact weight of the user. By lifting the body up during running, the invention makes it easier for the user to run and reduces the strike impact.

The invention also acts to bring the user back to their initial position after each step so that there is no need for a moving conveyor belt, like used in a treadmill, to keep the user in a central position on the machine while the user is running on the machine.

Optionally coupled with a suitable running ramp, that can offer cushioning and/or rebounding properties, the invention allows the user to be able to enjoy a natural running gait while feeling like they have enhanced running abilities (which are being provided by the invention).


The FIGS. 1, 2 and 3 show the basic apparatus in action. In these embodiments, the user has put the embodiment of the Band around their midsection and is running on an embodiment of an angled Ramp. The Ramp does not have a moving belt as does a treadmill. It is a virtually a stationary floor under the runner.

In these embodiments shown in the figures, it can be seen that the Band is acting to lift the user up and the ramp provides a more suitable running surface than the ground. The ramp may also have cushioning and rebounding effects to make the running more comfortable and easier.

FIG. 4 shows an embodiment of an apparatus for holding the Band up by using a door and its frame as the support.

FIG. 5 shows an embodiment for attaching a strip of artificial or natural rubber sheeting in a manner that can be connected to a chain or belt so that keeps the strip of rubber sheeting stays flat and does not roll. The eyelet or hook in this figure can be used to attach the band to a supporting frame.

As can be seen in FIG. 6 a frame can be made so multiple bands can be connected to top bar for multiple users to run side by side. Multiple Ramps can be positioned below the top bar and maybe held in position with use of the Frame's base.

In some embodiments of this multi user frame, the top bar (to which the bands can be connected) can be positioned not quite at the rear of the Frame so that if the Frame is placed against a wall that the top bar will be away from the wall. The advantage of this is to provide extra room behind the user so their legs will not touch the wall when the band is being used when very short (for the purposes of increasing the lift that the band gives to the user and to further lighten the user to make it easier for the user to run.)

To achieve optimal use of the invention's advantages there are relationships between the various dimensions of the frame. The combination of lengths and angles that describe the different frames is always so that the frame causes the embodiment of the Band (that is connected to that frame) to be used so that the midpoint of the Band is below the horizontal level of where the Band is connected to the frame. The figures display some combinations of measurements for the frames so that good performance is achieved. It can be seen in the figures that the midpoints of the embodiments of the Band displayed are below the attachment point of the band to the frame. This is so there is always an upwards vector lightening the effective running weight of the user when they are on the machine.

As can be seen in FIG. 2, an embodiment of a Band may include rubber and springs and non-stretch materials as well. The connecting device to a supporting frame in this embodiment in FIG. 2 includes a chain.

In this embodiment, the adjusting for different user height/technique etc. is being done by clips and straps. It may also be done also with belts or many other strap length adjusting methods and materials.

In FIG. 2, the embodiment of the optional Second band is shown in elastic but it can include any stretching material including rubber, natural or synthetic.

FIG. 2 also shows how the Ramp or Running board maybe orientated parallel to the direction of running. So it is longer in the direction of running. This particular embodiment has rubber bands connected to the Ramp at each end to give extra rebound to the board. A variety of spring mechanisms in the ramp can work equally as well.

The Ramp may also be made of sprung metal, in part or in full to achieve the rebound characteristics desired.

The spring systems used in the Ramp can be any type of spring. They may also include leaf springs as shown in FIGS. 7 (a), (b) and (c).


The surprising feature of this invention is that a user achieves a natural running gait without a moving floor. When describing the invention to even those very experienced in the art, the achievement of a natural-running machine without a moving floor is always argued with. Nonetheless, the invention does achieve this. If the design of the invention was obvious then it is unlikely health clubs would continue spending fortunes on treadmills with maintenance of motors and replacement of expensive belts plus electricity and in many cases costing themselves a profitable business. The need is there for less costly machines. And many other experts are working in the area continually to produce better machines because competition among fitness machine suppliers is fierce (as we know from many years in this industry). So if the invention was obvious to these experts, it is logical to expect that the product would have been created. However, some novel steps have been taken through an understanding of some of the latest research in biomechanics of the running gait and how the moving body interacts with the ground surface beneath it.

As this equipment has not been made before, there are some undoubted novelties within the invention at the level of the preferred embodiments in the combinations of angles and the spring co-efficients of the sprung apparati that give the embodiments such good performance for the user.

The invention may be comprised of several components.

One such component is a band that can act as a spring or is connected to spring(s). Embodiments for the spring include sections of Rubber (natural or artificial like “Chudex”), elastic, or metal springs or any material that stretches and has a rebounding or memory characteristics to return it to its original shape. The Band does not need to be entirely of materials that have spring or memory properties.

The band is used at an angle above the horizontal, with a vector component that could be used to effectively lighten or lift up the user i.e the ends of the Band are connected to points above the level where the centre point of the Band is positioned when the invention is in use. The embodiments in FIGS. 1 and 2 comply with this but are at slightly diferent angles.

Optionally the Band may have more bands accompanying the main band. These other bands can work as a reserve for functional and safety purposes, especially in case the main band might break.

The invention may include a method for attaching the Band to chains, adjustable straps, belts or eyelets or connecting devices that attach the Band to the supporting structure. A preferred embodiment of this is shown in FIG. 5 where the main band is of rubber and has to be joined to metal using adhesive tapes with staples going through the tape and rubber.

Another of the components may be a flat or angled Ramp. While it is possible to do without the Ramp, the user will usually experience discomfort then injury with usage without the Ramp.

Optionally the Ramp may be cushioned or sprung to act to improve the characteristics of the base on which the user is running. The Ramp may have spring features designed in via the use of wood or laminates, or by the addition of rubber or metal or other materials with spring features in the design to enable the ramp to give some cushioning or rebound effect for the user.

In some embodiments a running board may be connected to sides of an embodiment of the Ramp, via a spring system which may use rubber as washers around the connecting bolts or screws or sprung connecting bolts or screws.

In other embodiments of the Ramp, such a running board may be sprung or have memory characteristics so it springs back when the user is running on it.

The Ramp may be padded to add cushioning and or rebound under it, on top and or in the joins of the Ramp.

The Band can be held up using a supporting Frame designed for the purpose or the Band may be attached in any of a number of ways to known objects, like door frames, mounted beams or bars, so to give the Band more than a horizontal angle for the user.

As shown in an embodiment shown in FIG. 4, an optional attachment to use a doorway as the Frame, may include stoppers or a bar that maybe made of rubber or other material that is non-damaging to the door, with straps that go over the door and can be jammed in a door to which the Band can be attached to the other side.

Any number of attachment methods can be used to connect the Band to the supporting Frame (or whatever object is used as the Frame) so the Band can be adjusted to suit the various heights of the users and or variation in heights of the what is used for the supporting Frame used for holding up the Band.

A Frame may be made to allow the invention to be readily usable at any time. Such a frame may support one or many bands and optionally also one or many Ramps. Such frames would be above 1 metre in height. Example Frame embodiments are shown in FIGS. 3 and 6.

In some of the preferred embodiments a chain is used between the Band and the Frame as it is easy to adjust as any links can be used as attachment points for the Band to hold it at a height the user desires it. Other adjusting straps and adjustable clips and similar also work instead of the chain.

In other preferred embodiments of the Band, there can be rubber and or metal springs. In other preferred embodiments, the band can be made of leather and attached to rubber and/or springs.

In the preferred embodiment in FIGS. 1 and 2, the second band maybe of commercial elastic, but many materials can work as well to achieve the objectives of the second band.

The Ramp may be shaped in a number of ways or its dimensions varied depending on the environment. The width and breadth dimensions allocated for each individual user, may vary from 30 cms to 2 metres in either way.

The thickness of a running board 9 i.e flat plate across the ramp for running on) will vary according to the other dimensions and can be in the range of 1 mm to 10 cms.

The Band width can vary from 5 cms to 50 cms. The length from 30 cms to 3 metres. The thickness will vary between 0.1 mm and 2 cms.

Some measurements of the dimensions of some preferred embodiments of the Band as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 may have artificial or natural rubber of 0.8 to 1.3 metres length and 10-30 mm wide and 0.5 mm to 3 mm thick of the rubber. They may or may not have springs attached to the ends of the Band.

Embodiments of the Ramp as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 can have the running board horizontal or tilted up to 60 degrees as measured from the horizontal.

The Ramp may have a limiter to set a maximum to the flex of the running board so to prevent the running board from being broken. In the preferred embodiments shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, the limiter can be a stump of a length dependant on its position on the board and related to the length of the running board, angle of the running board and its flex.

The stride rate of a user maybe recorded using switches, proximity switches or any sensing device. The sensor can be mounted in a soft gel to make it impact resistant when the ramp is flexed as the user's foot comes in contact with the ramp.