Title:
Multi-press exerciser
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An upper body exerciser has an exercise arm that may be operated either by rigid handles fixed on the arm or by handles attached to the arm by flexible cables. The exerciser comprises a support frame, an exercise arm assembly pivotally linked to the support frame operable with at least one rigid handle and at least one flexible handle assembly, the flexible handle assembly having a hand grip portion and a flexible connecting portion attached to the exercise arm. The exercise arm assembly may include means for adjusting a starting position of the exercise arm. The exerciser may include an adjustable back rest and may have additional exercise stations, such as leg extension/leg curl, high pulley, low pulley and mid pulley.



Inventors:
Habing, Theodore G. (Tustin, CA, US)
Application Number:
11/132501
Publication Date:
11/23/2006
Filing Date:
05/18/2005
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
482/100
International Classes:
A63B21/062
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
HWANG, VICTOR KENNY
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WOMBLE BOND DICKINSON (US) LLP (ATLANTA, GA, US)
Claims:
1. An exercise apparatus, comprising: a support frame; an exercise arm assembly pivotally coupled to the support frame, the exercise arm assembly comprising a starting position adjustment, an exercise arm with a rigid handle, and at least one flexible handle assembly, the flexible handle assembly having a hand grip portion and a flexible connecting portion securing the grip portion to the exercise arm.

2. The exercise apparatus of claim 1 further comprising a seat and an adjustable back support.

3. The exercise apparatus of claim 1, wherein the exercise arm assembly comprises first and second rigid, elongate exercise arms, and first and second flexible handle assemblies attached to respective ones of said exercise arms.

4. The exercise apparatus of claim 1, wherein the starting position adjustment comprises an exercise arm adjustment sector pivotally coupled to the support frame for swinging movement in at least one fixed arc about a first pivot axis and wherein the exercise arm is pivotally coupled to the exercise arm adjustment sector for swinging movement in at least one fixed arc about a second pivot axis.

5. An exercise apparatus, comprising: a support frame; an exercise arm assembly pivotally coupled to the support frame for swinging movement in at least one fixed arc about a first pivot axis and in at least one fixed arc about a second pivot axis, the exercise arm assembly having at least one exercise arm and at least one flexible handle assembly secured to the exercise arm; the handle assembly having a hand grip portion and a flexible connecting portion securing the hand grip portion to the exercise arm.

6. The exercise apparatus of claim 5 further comprising a seat and an adjustable back support.

7. The exercise apparatus of claim 5 further comprising at least one rigid handle attached to the exercise arm.

8. The apparatus of claim 5, wherein the exercise arm assembly comprises first and second rigid exercise arms, and first and second flexible handle assemblies attached to respective ones of said exercise arms.

9. The exercise apparatus of claim 8 further comprising first and second rigid handles attached to respective ones of the exercise arms.

10. An exercise apparatus comprising: a support frame; a combined press and pec fly exercise station on the support frame; an exercise arm assembly operable from the press and pec fly exercise station, the exercise arm assembly comprising a starting position adjustment, at least one rigid exercise arm with a rigid handle, and at least one flexible handle assembly having a grip portion and a flexible connecting portion securing the grip portion to the exercise arm such that the flexible handle assembly can be used for inward pressing and pec fly motion.

11. The apparatus of claim 10 further comprising a seat and an adjustable back support.

12. The apparatus as claimed in claim 10, wherein the press and pec fly exercise station further comprises a row exercise station.

13. An exercise apparatus comprising: a support frame; a combined press and pec fly exercise station on the support frame; an exercise arm assembly operable from the press and pec fly exercise station, the exercise arm assembly comprising a starting position adjustment, an exercise arm and at least one fixed handle rigidly fixed to the exercise arm to prevent lateral motion of the fixed handle; a flexible handle assembly having a grip portion and a flexible connecting portion securing the grip portion to the exercise arm such that the grip portion is free to move in both lateral and vertical directions relative to the exercise arm.

14. The apparatus of claim 13 further comprising a seat and an adjustable back support.

15. The apparatus as claimed in claim 13, wherein the press and pec fly exercise station further comprises a row exercise station from which the exercise arm is operable with the fixed handle.

16. An exercise apparatus comprising the combination of: an exercise station having a seat and an adjustable back support; an exercise arm assembly comprising at least one rigid handle and a starting position adjustment; a flexible handle assembly having a grip portion and a flexible connecting portion securing the grip portion to the exercise arm assembly at a connection point such that the grip portion has six degrees of freedom of movement about the connection point.

17. The exercise apparatus of claim 16, wherein the rigid handle on the exercise arm assembly is operable for standard presses, incline presses, shoulder presses and row exercises and the flexible handle assembly is operable for free motion presses, incline presses, shoulder presses and inward motion fly exercises.

18. A method of exercising wherein an operator adjusts a starting position of a rigid press arm for press exercises and for row exercises, and when adjusted for row exercises the user can use flexible cable handles attached to the press arm for free motion press and fly exercises.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

This invention relates generally to the field of exercise devices. More particularly, the invention relates to an upper body exerciser with which a variety of press and row exercises may be performed

2. Background

A myriad of exercise machines have been developed for exercising the various muscle groups of the body. Machines for exercising the muscle groups of the upper torso are particularly popular. Many such machines have a pivoting press arm with which an operator can perform variations on the traditional bench press exercise. The handles on a pivoting press arm are constrained to move in a circular arc, which is not necessarily ideal for all exercises.

Other types of exercise machines employ a handle attached to the end of a flexible line, such as a rope or cable, which, in turn, is attached to a weight or other form of exercise resistance. This type of exercise machine allows the operator to control and define the exercise path. This allows the machine to more readily accommodate operators of different physiques. Furthermore, since the operator's hands are not confined to movement along a predetermined path, exercises involving multiple muscle groups may be performed.

Exercise machines combining flexible lines and a pivoting arm have been proposed. Such machines are shown, for example, in U.S. Pat. No. 4,902,007 issued to Ferrari and in U.S. Pat. No. 6,561,960 issued to Webber.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention presents an upper body exerciser having an exercise arm that may be operated either by rigid handles fixed on the arm or by handles attached to the arm by flexible cables. The exerciser comprises a support frame, an exercise arm assembly pivotally linked to the support frame operable with at least one rigid handle and at least one flexible handle assembly, the flexible handle assembly having a hand grip portion and a flexible connecting portion attached to the exercise arm. The exercise arm assembly may include means for adjusting a starting position of the exercise arm.

The fixed handles of the exercise arm are used for standard bench press, incline press, shoulder press and seated row exercises. The flexible handle assemblies are used for an inward motion standard pectoral fly (pec fly) exercise, incline pec fly, shoulder fly, free motion press, incline press and shoulder press exercises. The flexible connecting portions of the flexible handle assemblies are attached proximate the fixed handles, and the grip portions are stowed on clips on the exercise arm when not in use.

Additionally the seat back may be adjustably and/or pivotally attached to the frame for the press exercises. By adjusting the seat back out the operator is provided back support while doing standard incline presses and shoulder presses with the rigid handles of the exercise arm. For cable presses and fly exercises, the operator simply adjusts the angle of pressing or fly movement with the flexible cable and keeps his or her back against the back rest for back support during these exercises. The adjustable seat back may be used but is not necessary for back support using the cable handles.

The exercise arm with multi position pre-stretch adjustment and the cable handles in combination with the adjustable back support provides an additional exercise, the incline press on the regular press arm (this cannot be done without back support), and also provides back support to the shoulder press exercises.

The exerciser may include additional exercise stations, such as leg extension/leg curl, high pulley, low pulley and mid pulley.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an exerciser in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a side elevation view of the exerciser configured for performing a chest press exercise;

FIG. 3 is a side elevation view of the exerciser configured for performing an incline press exercise;

FIG. 4 is a side elevation view of the exerciser configured for performing an incline press exercise using flexible handle assemblies;

FIG. 5 is a side elevation view of the exerciser configured for performing a fly exercise;

FIG. 6 is a side elevation view of the exerciser configured for performing a row exercise.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

In the following description, for purposes of explanation and not limitation, specific details are set forth in order to provide a thorough understanding of the present invention. However, it will be apparent to one skilled in the art that the present invention may be practiced in other embodiments that depart from these specific details. In other instances, detailed descriptions of well-known methods and devices are omitted so as to not obscure the description of the present invention with unnecessary detail.

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an exerciser 10 constructed in accordance with one embodiment of the present invention. Exerciser 10 has a support frame 12 comprising an upright column member 14, a rear support member 16, a front support member 18 and a seat support 20. The various components of the support frame may be constructed of steel tubing as is conventional in the field of exercise machines and may be joined together by welding and/or by mechanical fasteners, which again is conventional in the field of exercise machines. Exerciser 10 is provided with a seat 22 and a cushion 24, the latter serving as a back rest for some exercises and a chest support for other exercises.

An exercise arm assembly 30 is pivotally suspended from support brackets 26 at pivot 28. Exercise arm 32 is connected to adjustment sector 34 at pivot 36. The exercise arm may be positioned at any of several predetermined locations along adjustment sector 34 and secured in place by a spring-loaded pin assembly of the type commonly used for securing adjustable assemblies of exercise machines or equivalent securing means.

Exerciser 10 may include a variety of exercise stations in addition to exercise arm 30. As shown, exerciser 10 includes a leg curl/leg extension arm 50 operable from seat 22 in a manner well understood to those skilled in the art of exercise devices. Exerciser 10 also includes a high pulley 52 for use in performing lat pull and other exercises and a low pulley 54 for use in performing bicep curl and other exercises. Headrest 56 may be pivotally attached to column member 14, such as by pivot arm 58. A pair of handles 57 may be provided so that an abdominal crunch exercise may be performed by an operator seated in seat 22.

Exercise resistance is provided by a stack of weights 60 located behind column member 14 and guided along vertical rods 62. A selected amount of weight is suspended on a cable, which is guided over a first pulley (not shown) near the top of the guide rods and a second pulley (also not shown) near the top of the column. The cable is coupled to the adjustment sector 34 to provide exercise resistance at exercise arm 32. Additional cables and pulleys (not shown) may be operatively coupled to the weight stack as is well known to provide exercise resistance at the various other exercise stations. Other means of providing exercise resistance may be employed, and the invention is not limited in this regard. Equivalent means of providing exercise resistance include free weights, elastic bands, friction plate assemblies, electromechanical resistance and the like.

As will be explained in greater detail below, exercise arm 32 may be operated in several different ways. The exercise arm may be operated either with outwardly extending rigid handles 38 or downwardly extending rigid handles 39. Alternatively, the operator may use handles 40, which are shown in a stowed position clipped to exercise arm 32 on clips 43. Handles 40 are attached to respective ones of the outwardly extending rigid handles 38 by cables 42. When an operator desires to perform an exercise using handles 40, the operator simply unclips them from their stowed locations on exercise arm 32. It will be appreciated that, as a result of the flexible coupling of handles 40, the handles have six degrees of freedom of movement (i.e., translation and rotation in three dimensions) about the respective coupling points.

FIG. 2 is a side elevation view of exerciser 10 configured to perform a chest press exercise using the rigid handles 38 or 39. The operator sits on seat 22 and uses cushion 24 in a generally upright position as a back rest. Exercise arm 32 is secured at a forward position along adjustment sector 34 so that the rigid handles are placed at a convenient starting position for the exercise.

FIG. 3 illustrates exerciser 10 configured to perform an incline press exercise. This configuration is essentially the same as that for the chest press exercise, except that cushion 24 is rotated forward about pivot 50 and secured in position with a spring-loaded pin or equivalent securing means.

FIG. 4 illustrates exerciser 10 configured to perform an incline press exercise using flexible cable handles 40. It will be noted that the exercise posture is essentially the same as that shown in FIG. 3. However, in this case, the flexible cable handles are used instead of the rigid handles. For this exercise, exercise arm 32 is secured at an intermediate location along adjustment sector 34.

FIG. 5 illustrates exerciser 10 configured to perform a fly exercise using flexible cable handles 40. In this configuration, cushion 24 is secured in its most upright position and exercise arm 32 is secured in its most rearward position along adjustment sector 34.

FIG. 6 illustrates exerciser 10 configured to perform a row exercise. Cushion 24 and exercise arm 32 are secured in the same positions as for the fly exercise, i.e., cushion 24 in its most upright position and exercise arm 32 in its most rearward position along adjustment sector 34. For the row exercise, however, the operator sits facing cushion 24 and operates exercise arm 32 using rigid handles 38 or 39.

It will be recognized that the above-described invention may be embodied in other specific forms without departing from the spirit or essential characteristics of the disclosure. Thus, it is understood that the invention is not to be limited by the foregoing illustrative details, but rather is to be defined by the appended claims.