Title:
Portable back support for a car seat or other seat
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A back support including a first substantially planar surface having a plurality of slats joined to a second substantially planar surface at a hinge, and a first connector strap joined to at least two of the slats of the first planar surface. As the support is used by a person in a sitting position, the first substantially planar surface may be a backrest, and the second substantially planar surface may be a seat. In particular, the first connector strap is joined to at least two of the plurality of slats of the backrest in such manner as to allow the plurality of slats to exhibit sufficient rigidity to support to the back of a user of the back support. Thus, the back support of the present invention provides sufficient flexibility for form fitting to comfortably receive a users back, while simultaneously being sufficiently rigid in both the longitudinal and lateral directions to provide back and lumbar support to a user.



Inventors:
Sawyer, Henry (Sharonville, OH, US)
Application Number:
11/457261
Publication Date:
02/15/2007
Filing Date:
07/13/2006
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
297/452.63
International Classes:
A47C1/16
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
ABRAHAM, TANIA
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WOOD, HERRON & EVANS, LLP (CINCINNATI, OH, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A back support comprising: a first substantially planar surface joined to a second substantially planar surface at a hinge, said first substantially planar surface including a plurality of slats; and a first connector strap joined to at least two of said plurality of slats of said first substantially planar surface; wherein said first connector strap is joined to said at least two of said plurality of slats of said first substantially planar surface to allow said plurality of slats of said first substantially planar surface to exhibit sufficient rigidity to support to the back of a user of the back support.

2. The back support of claim 1, said second substantially planar surface including a plurality of slats; and further comprising a second connector strap joined to at least two of said plurality of slats of said second substantially planar surface.

3. The back support of claim 2 wherein said first substantially planar surface further comprises a backrest, and wherein said second substantially planar surface further comprises a seat.

4. The back support of claim 3 wherein said first connector strap is joined to each of said plurality of slats of said backrest.

5. The back support of claim 3 wherein said plurality of slats of said backrest are each spaced in a range of about ⅛″ to about ¼″ from an adjoining slat of said plurality of slats of said backrest.

6. The back support of claim 3 wherein said first connector strap is formed from plastic selected from polyethylene and polypropylene.

7. The back support of claim 6 wherein said first connector strap is joined to at least two of said plurality of slats via a fastener selected from screws, nails, and staples.

8. The back support of claim 3 having a first position in a general L-shape to allow use by a user, and further having a second position wherein said backrest and said seat are folded about said hinge to confront one another.

9. The back support of claim 8 wherein said hinge further provides a handle for use in transporting said back support.

10. The back support of claim 3, each of said plurality of slats of said backrest having a width in a range of about 1½″ to about 2″.

11. A combination comprising: a chair-like element including a seat portion and a back portion; and a back support comprising a first substantially planar surface joined to a second substantially planar surface at a hinge, said first substantially planar surface and said second substantially planar surface each including a plurality of slats, a first connector strap joined to at least two of said plurality of slats of said first substantially planar surface; and a second connector strap joined to at least two of said plurality of slats of said second substantially planar surface, wherein said first connector strap is joined to said at least two of said plurality of slats of said first substantially planar surface to allow said plurality of slats of said first substantially planar surface to exhibit sufficient rigidity to support to the back of a user of said back support.

12. The combination of claim 11 wherein said first substantially planar surface further comprises a backrest, and wherein said second substantially planar surface further comprises a seat.

13. The combination of claim 12 wherein said back support is positioned relative to said chair-like element such that said seat of said back support confronts said seat portion of said chair-like element, and said backrest of said back support confronts said back portion of said chair-like element.

14. The combination of claim 12 wherein said first connector strap is joined to each of said plurality of slats of said backrest.

15. The combination of claim 12 wherein said plurality of slats of said backrest are each spaced in a range of about ⅛″ to about ¼″ from an adjoining slat of said plurality of slats of said backrest.

16. The combination of claim 12 wherein said first connector strap 20 is formed from plastic selected from polyethylene and polypropylene.

17. The combination of claim 16 wherein said first connector strap 20 is joined to at least two of said plurality of slats via a fastener selected from screws, nails, and staples.

18. The combination of claim 12 having a first position in a general L-shape to allow use by a user, and further having a second position wherein said backrest and said seat are folded about said hinge to confront one another.

19. The combination of claim 18 wherein said hinge further provides a handle for use in transporting said back support.

20. The combination of claim 12, each of said plurality of slats of said backrest having a width in a range of about 1½″ to about 2″.

21. A back support comprising: a first substantially planar surface joined to a second substantially planar surface at a hinge, said hinge adapted to allow said first and second substantially planar surfaces to move between an open position, wherein said first and second substantially planar surfaces do not confront one another, and a closed position, wherein said first and second substantially planar surfaces do confront one another; wherein said first and second substantially planar surfaces are in said closed position, said hinge forms a handle to allow a user to carry the back support.

22. A back support comprising: a first substantially planar surface joined to a second substantially planar surface at a hinge, said first substantially planar surface including a plurality of slats; and a first connector strap joined to at least two of said plurality of slats of said first substantially planar surface; wherein said first connector strap is joined to said at least two of said plurality of slats of said first substantially planar surface to allow said plurality of slats of said first substantially planar surface to exhibit rigidity in the lateral direction of the first planar surface.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 60/699,250, entitled “Portable Back Support for a Car Seat or Other Seat,” filed on Jul. 14, 2005, the disclosure of which is hereby incorporated by reference herein in its entirety.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates generally to back supports, and specifically to collapsible chair-like back supports, such as those that may be used with an existing chair-like structure to provide back and/or lumbar support to a user.

BACKGROUND OF INVENTION

Back supports, examples of which may include foldable chairs and/or portable chair-like supports, generally involve a relatively simple collapsible composite chair-like structure having a backrest and a seat. Some of these supports have been previously used as stand-alone chairs for use on bleachers at sporting events, for example (i.e., they do not use a preexisting chair for support). The backrest and the seat each may be formed of a series of slats held in relation to each other by fabric pocket structures and by fabric hinges extending between the backrest and the seat. Examples of such chair-like back supports can be seen in U.S. Pat. Nos. 6,164,726 and 5,100,203. As a result of the hinge, the supports may be placed in an open position for conventional chair-like use, or can be collapsed to a closed position, and, in the case of the '726 and '203 patents, rolled up to be easily carried about.

More specifically, the slats of the '726 and '203 patents are either free fitting within the pockets of the fabric, thereby holding the slats in parallel relation, or alternatively, may be fastened thereto, such as by rivets. In the kind of chair-like back support described in the '726 and '203 patents there are, typically, three pieces of fabric, with pockets provided in them. One piece of fabric forms the hinge of the chair-like structure, and has pockets on both sides. A number of slats are provided, with some of the slats being used for the seat, and the remainder of the slats being used for the backrest. Each of the slats has one end that is secured in a pocket of the hinge piece of fabric. The other end of each slat is secured in a pocket of one of the other pieces of fabric. The top and bottom edges of the chair-like structure are thus formed by these other pieces of fabric, and the relationship of the pockets is such as to maintain the relative, generally parallel positions of the adjacent slats of the backrest and seat portions. The opening of the chair-like structure is limited by a pair of side straps, one each on either side of the chair-like structure, that extend from the outermost seat slat on each side to the outermost backrest slat on each side. These straps are connected, generally, to the respective slats at or near the end pieces of fabric.

When placed in an open position, a person may sit on the seat portion. The opening of the backrest relative to the seat is limited by the length of the side straps. The slats may draw in around the body, and may provide stiffening to support the user's back. This stiffening occurs in a longitudinal direction along the slats. Back supports of this nature are generally light enough to be carried easily, whether to the beach, or to sit in bleachers, or to use as a camping or fishing chair.

Thus, back supports of the type generally referred to in the above-described patents have met with some degree of success in the past for use as chairs at sporting events, on the beach, and the like. However, in dealing with collapsible slat chair back supports, such as the type described in the '726 and '203 patents, certain deficiencies have become apparent.

First, the back supports described above are designed to be not only foldable, but also transportable by being rolled up as well. In order to provide a back support that can be rolled up, the slats must be made sufficiently thin and/or sufficiently spaced one from another such that rolling of the support upon itself is possible. As a result of the relative size and spacing of the slats, these chairs often are more flexible than desired, particularly in the lateral direction, thus often providing less back and lumbar support than is desired. Thus, the use of these supports can lead to a sore back and other discomfort when used over a period of time.

Second, the chairs described above, and other previous chair-like supports, are designed to be stand-alone devices (i.e., when placed in the open position, the movement of the backrest relative to, and away from, the seat has an outer limit). More specifically, they include side strapping, which can be seen in the '726 and '203 patents, for example, as straps positioned diagonally between the backrest and the seat. This prevents the backrest from moving past a generally perpendicular position relative the seat to a position generally parallel to, and not confronting, the seat. However, this side strapping is positioned in the general location of the users arms, and thus can interfere with the mobility of the user. Further, the side-strapping may also restrict the area that a person may use for sitting, since the straps may only allow for certain sized persons to comfortably use the chair-like support.

In addition to those collapsible supports used as stand-alone chairs, as described above, there are also several drawbacks to the use of standard chairs. For example, many seat structures found in offices, restaurants, cars, etc. are often lacking in any sort of back or lumbar support. Alternatively, should any back or lumbar support be provided, it is often adjustable such that a user may need to continually set the desired level of back or lumbar support. As contrasted with the seats described above, seats in offices, restaurants, and cars are likely not collapsible and transportable, resulting in constant readjustment. Thus, one may desire to use such back supports/chair-like structures in conjunction with another chair-like structure, such as an automobile seat. The limited mobility of the backrest, due to the side strapping, prevents the backrest from adequately confronting the back portion of an automobile seat to conform thereto. Thus, these supports are difficult to use in conjunction with other chair-like structures.

In view of the above, it would be desirable to provide a seat support that is easily transportable and which provides adequate back and/or lumbar support to a user. It would be further desirable to provide such a seat support with minimal side strapping to increase the comfort of the user.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention overcomes the drawbacks described above in the Background of the Invention. It does so by providing a back support including a first substantially planar surface having a plurality of slats joined to a second substantially planar surface at a hinge, and a first connector strap joined to at least two of the slats of the first planar surface. As the support is used by a person in a sitting position, the first substantially planar surface may be a backrest, and the second substantially planar surface may be a seat. In particular, the first connector strap is joined to at least two of the plurality of slats of the backrest in such manner as to allow the plurality of slats to exhibit sufficient rigidity to support to the back of a user of the back support. Thus, the back support of the present invention provides sufficient flexibility for form fitting to comfortably receive a users back, while simultaneously being sufficiently rigid in both the longitudinal and lateral directions to provide back and lumbar support to a user.

The seat of the present invention may also include a plurality of slats, and thus the back support may also include a second connector strap joined to at least two of the slats of the seat. This also provides flexibility to conform to a user, while also providing rigidity in the longitudinal and lateral directions to provide support to the pelvis and thighs of a user.

The back support of the present invention also includes a hinge, such as a hinge made of straps positioned between the backrest and seat, and fixedly coupled to both the backrest and the seat. This hinge allows the back support to have an open position, wherein it may be used by a user, and a closed position, wherein it may be foldable upon itself and be transported by a user. In the closed position, the hinge may also be used as a handle to transport the back support.

While the back support of the present invention includes a hinge between the backrest and the seat, it also has eliminated the side strapping, such as that shown in the '726 and '203 patents. Thus, it is believed that the present back support is more versatile in accepting a wider range of sizes of users, is more comfortable than previous supports by not including structure that interferes with the arms or other body portions of a user, and is capable of conforming to another chair-like structure with which it may be associated.

Thus, in use, the present invention may be used with a chair-like element including a seat portion and a back portion. The back support is positioned relative to the chair-like element such that the seat of said back support confronts the seat portion of the chair-like element, and the backrest of the back support confronts the back portion of the chair-like element. Because the back support has no side strapping, it is capable of conforming to the chair-like structure when a user sits in the back support. At the same time, the first and second connector straps provide flexibility to allow the backrest and seat to conform to the back, pelvis, and thighs of a user, and provides sufficient rigidity in both the longitudinal and lateral directions to support same. The fabric hinges and pocket structures of previous chair-like supports do not provide for such rigidity in both the longitudinal and lateral directions.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a back support in an open position in accordance with the principles of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a back view of the back support in the open position in accordance with the principles of the present invention;

FIG. 3 is a bottom view of the back support in an open position in accordance with the principles of the present invention;

FIG. 4 is a top view of the back support in an open position in accordance with the principles of the present invention;

FIG. 5 is a top view of the back support being used by a person in accordance with the principles of the present invention;

FIG. 6 is a side view of the back support in an open position in accordance with the principles of the present invention;

FIG. 7 is a side view of the back support in the closed position in accordance with the principles of the present invention;

FIG. 8 is a perspective view of the back support in an open position and associated with a chair-like structure in accordance with the principles of the present invention; and

FIG. 9 is a top view of the back support being used by a person in association with a chair-like structure in accordance with the principles of the present invention.

The accompanying drawings, which are incorporated in and constitute a part of the specification, illustrate embodiments of the invention and, together with a general description of the invention given above, and the detailed description of the embodiments given below, serve to explain the principles of the invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Referring to the Figures, the present invention includes a back support 10 including a first substantially planar surface 12 including a plurality of slats 14 joined to a second substantially planar surface 16 at a hinge 18, and a first connector strap 20 joined to at least two of the slats 14 of the first substantially planar surface 12.

The first substantially planar surface 12 may be a backrest, and the second substantially planar surface 16 may be a seat. Alternatively, the first substantially planar surface 12 may be the seat and the second substantially planar surface 16 may be the backrest. By “substantially planar” it is meant that the first surface 12 and second surface 16 need not exist entirely along a plane, but may exhibit enough curvature or other deviance from the plane as would occur by the normal flex of a plurality of coactive slats, or as would occur when conforming to the body of a user or surface of an associated chair-like structure when in use. In particular, the first connector strap 20 is joined to at least two of the plurality of slats 14 of the backrest in such manner as to allow the plurality of slats 14 to exhibit sufficient rigidity to support to the back and lumbar regions of a user of the back support 10, while conforming to the back of a user. Thus, the back support 10 of the present invention provides sufficient flexibility for form fitting to comfortably receive a user's back, while simultaneously being sufficiently rigid in both the longitudinal and lateral directions to provide back and lumbar support to a user.

The seat of the present invention may also include a plurality of slats 22, and thus the back support 10 may also include a second connector strap 24 joined to at least two of the slats 22 of the seat. This also provides flexibility to conform to the pelvis and thighs of a user, while also providing rigidity in the longitudinal and lateral directions to provide support to the pelvis and thighs of a user. As used herein, the “longitudinal direction” is the direction that is substantially parallel to the longitudinal axes of the plurality of slats. As used herein, the “lateral direction” is the direction that is substantially perpendicular to the longitudinal axes of the plurality of slats.

More specifically, the back support 10 includes the seat joined to the backrest at the hinge 18, wherein the seat and the backrest each include a plurality of slats. The first connector strap 20 is joined to at least two of the plurality of slats of the backrest. While the first connector strap 20 is joined to at least two slats of the backrest, it will be recognized by those skilled in the art that the first connector strap 20 may be joined to more than two slats of the backrest, and in certain embodiments, may be joined to each of the plurality of slats of the backrest. In like manner, while the second connector strap 24 is joined to at least two slats of the seat, it will be recognized by those skilled in the art that the second connector strap 24 may be joined to more than two slats of the seat, and in certain embodiments, may be joined to each of the plurality of slats of the seat.

In one embodiment, the back support 10 includes a flexible barrel design having the first connector strap 20 connected to each of the slats of the backrest, the slats being generally straight 1″×2″ wood pieces. While the slats are described herein as wood, those skilled in the art will recognize that other materials, such as plastic, may be used. In such an embodiment, each of the plurality of slats of said backrest may be spaced at least ⅛″ from an adjoining slat of the plurality of slats of the backrest and generally in a range of ⅛″ to ¼″. The first connector strap 20 provides lateral flexibility to provide both the barrel shape and the flexibility to contour to an individual using the back support 10 (see FIG. 3). The first connector strap 20 of the back support 10 may be made of various materials including leather, fabric, plastic, a woven strap, etc. so long as the material of the strap 20, and its connection to the slats 14 of the backrest are rigid enough to provide longitudinal and lateral rigidity to the slats of the backrest as described above. In the illustrated embodiment, the first connector strap 20 is formed from plastic selected from polyethylene and polypropylene, although it will be recognized by those skilled in the art that any plastics suitable to connect the slats may be used. The first connector strap 20 may be joined to at least two of the plurality of slats of the backrest via any number of fasteners 26, for example, screws or nails. In the illustrated embodiment, the fasteners 26 are screws. It will be recognized by those skilled in the art that screws and nails are exemplary, and other fasteners, such as staples, may be used.

The second connector strap 24 of the back support 10 may be made of various materials including leather, fabric, animal sinew, plastic, etc. so long as the material of the strap, and its connection to the slats of the seat are rigid enough to provide longitudinal and lateral rigidity to the slats of the seat as described above. In the illustrated embodiment, the second connector strap 24 is formed from plastic selected from polyethylene and polypropylene, although it will be recognized by those skilled in the art that any plastics suitable to connect the slats may be used. The second connector strap 24 may be joined to at least two of the plurality of slats of the seat via any number of fasteners 26, for example, screws or nails. In the illustrated embodiment, the fasteners 26 are screws. It will be recognized by those skilled in the art that screws and nails are exemplary, and other fasteners, such as staples, may be used.

As described above, both the first and second connector straps 20, 24 may be joined to at least two of the plurality of slats 14, 22 of the backrest and seat, respectively, by any number of fasteners 26. In the illustrated embodiment and referring now to FIGS. 2 and 3, the first and second connector straps 20, 24 are joined to each of the slats 14, 22 of the respective backrest and seat by screws disposed into the general center (i.e., along the longitudinal axis of each slat). The first and second connector straps 20, 24 are the elements of the present invention that provide the backrest and seat with the necessary flexibility, yet rigidity, to provide adequate back, lumbar, pelvic, and thigh support, while at the same time retaining the flexibility contour to the user's body, as well as to any like-like structure with which the back support 10 may be associated. As described above, each of the slats 14, 22 are generally 1½″-2″ wide and are generally spaced in a range of ⅛″-¼″ from one another. Thus, the centerline, or longitudinal axis 28, of adjoining slats is in the range of 1⅝″-2¼″ spaced apart from one another. Thus, the screws generally will be placed in a range of 1⅝″-2¼″ from one another. In order to provide flexibility, however, a certain degree of slack is provided in the first and second connector straps 20, 24 between each pair of screws, although not so much slack is provided as to lose the necessary rigidity. To that end, the length of strapping between each consecutive pair of screws is generally in the range of 1¾″-2¾″. Also, as can be seen from the Figures, each of the backrests and seats do not necessarily include a sole connector strap 20, 24, but may include a plurality of connector straps.

In one embodiment, the seat and backrest sections combined are joined by hinge 18 between the seat and the back. In this embodiment, the backrest may have a general area of approximately 270 square inches and the seat may have a general area of approximately 238 square inches. However, it will be recognized by those of skill in the art that the sizes of the backrest and seat are merely exemplary, and may be altered to provide back supports 10 for different sized people, such as larger supports for oversized persons and smaller supports for children.

For example, while nine slats are shown for the backrest of the back support 10, a greater or lesser number could be used, as will be recognized by those skilled in the art. In one embodiment, the clearance spacing between adjacent slats in an unstressed chair is greater than ⅛″, when using 1¾″ wide slats. In the most preferred embodiment, the clearance between 1¾″ slats is about ⅛″, (+/−⅛″), yielding a chair of suitable overall girth for a large proportion of adults. Larger spacings, or smaller spacings with a larger number of slats can also be chosen. For example, alternate backrests of back supports 10 may include a ten slat “large” embodiment, and an eleven slat “extra large” embodiment. A child version, including less than nine slats may also be provided. The unstretched developed width of the nine-slat array illustrated is roughly 15½″-16″.

Also, while ten slats are shown for the seat of the back support 10, a greater or lesser number could be used, as will be recognized by those skilled in the art. In one embodiment, the clearance spacing between adjacent slats in an unstressed chair is greater than ⅛″ when using 1¾″ wide slats. In the most preferred embodiment, the clearance between 1¾″ slats is about ⅛″, (+/−⅛″), yielding a chair of suitable overall girth for a large proportion of adults. Larger spacings, or smaller spacings with a larger number of slats, can also be chosen. For example, alternate seats for back supports 10 may include an eleven slat “large” embodiment, and a twelve slat “extra large” embodiment. A child version, including less than ten slats, may also be provided. The unstretched developed width of the nine-slat array illustrated is roughly 16½″-17½″.

While certain embodiments of the invention may employ seat and backrest slats of equal length and overall size (such that the seat and back are interchangeable, and a user can sit in the chair either way), they need not be of equal length, and one could use slats of unequal widths, possibly with the outer slats being slimmer than the inner slats. Further, it is not essential that the slats of the seat, or the slats of the back all be the same length. A chair back, or seat, or pleasing profile other than generally square is possible.

The back support 10 of the present invention is adapted to be used with a chair-like element 36, such as a chair, sofa, automobile seat, etc (See FIG. 9). The back support 10 thus can adapt to contour to both the body of a user and to the surface of the chair-like element 36. The thighs, back, and pelvis thus receive necessary structural support and flexibility while the back support 10 is in use. The hinge 18 allows the backrest and seat to fold into each other (see FIG. 6) for convenience in transporting. As will be described in greater detail below, the hinge 18 can form a handle 34 for carrying the back support 10 when in the folded or closed position.

As described herein, the seat and backrest portions 38, 40 of the back support 10 may be interchangeable, although this need not be the case. In the general case of the intermediate slats, that is, any slats other than outside slats, all the slats may be the same, and may have smoothly rounded side edge corners, for the comfort of users and the discouragement of splinters. Although not shown in the Figures, the back support 10 may include fabric covering for receiving the slats, or alternatively, for receiving solely the distal ends of slats. This adds to the comfort of the back support 10 when in use, and further prevents any splinters.

The back support 10 includes both a first position and a second position. In the first position, the back support 10 is open in a general L-shape to allow use by a user (See FIG. 5). In this position, the face surfaces 30, 32 of the backrest and seat do not confront one another. In the second position, the back support 10 is folded upon itself to allow a user to easily carry or otherwise transport the back support 10. More specifically, in the second position, the backrest and the seat are folded about the hinge 18 such that the face surfaces 30, 32 of the backrest and seat confront one another.

In carrying the back support 10 when in the second position, and referring to FIG. 7, the hinge 18 can be seen to further provide a handle 34 for use in transporting said back support 10. The handle 34 is thus integral with the hinge 18 and is formed from the hinge 18 due to the configuration of the hinge 18 when the back support 10 is in the second position.

While the back support 10 of the present invention includes a hinge 18 between the backrest and the seat, it also has eliminated the side strapping, such as that shown in the '726 and '203 patents. Thus, it is believed that the present back support 10 provides is more versatile in that it can accept a wider range of sizes of user, is more comfortable that previous supports in that it does not include structure that interferes with the arms or other body portions of a user, and is capable of conforming to another chair-like structure with which it may be associated.

Referring to FIGS. 8 and 9, in use, the present invention may be used with a chair-like element 36 including a seat portion 38 and a back portion 40. The back support 10 is positioned relative to the chair-like element 36 such that the seat of said back support 10 confronts the seat portion 38 of the chair-like element 36, and the backrest of the back support 10 confronts the back portion 40 of the chair-like element 36. Because the back support 10 has no side strapping, it is capable of conforming to the chair-like structure 36 when a user sits in the back support 10. At the same time, the first and second connector straps 20, 24 provide flexibility to allow the backrest and seat to conform to the back, pelvis, and thighs of a user, and provides sufficient rigidity in both the longitudinal and lateral directions to support same. The previous fabric hinges and pocket structures of the prior art do not provide for such rigidity in both the longitudinal and lateral directions.

Thus, the present invention also provides a combination including a chair-like element 36 including a seat portion 38 and a back portion 40, and a back support 10 comprising a seat joined to a backrest at a hinge 18. The seat and the backrest each may include a plurality of slats. A first connector strap 20 is joined to at least two of the plurality of slats of the backrest. A second connector strap 24 is joined to at least two of the plurality of slats of the seat. The first connector strap 20 is joined to the at least two of the plurality of slats of the backrest to allow the plurality of slats of the backrest to exhibit sufficient rigidity to support to the back of a user of the back support 10.

As described above, the seat of the present invention may also include a plurality of slats, and thus the back support 10 may also include a second connector strap 24 joined to at least two of the slats of the seat. This also provides flexibility to conform to a user, while also providing rigidity in the longitudinal and lateral directions to provide support to the pelvis and thighs of a user.

While the present invention has been illustrated by the description of embodiments thereof, and while the embodiments have been described in considerable detail, it is not intended to restrict or in any way limit the scope of the appended claims to such detail. Additional advantages and modifications will readily appear to those skilled in the art. For example, the seat may include a solid surface such that only the backrest includes a plurality of slats. The invention in its broader aspects is, therefore, not limited to the specific details, representative apparatus and method, and illustrative examples shown and described. Accordingly, departures may be made from such details without departing from the spirit or scope of the general inventive concept.