Device for increasing striking power in martial arts strikes
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This invention discloses means to increase striking power by applying the principal of progressive selectable resistance to a boxing and martial arts strike training device that allows users to select and pre-determine resistance as appropriate for striking with various body weapons such as arms, hands and feet. More particularly, this invention discloses means having a pivotal mast element, having a striking pad affixed thereto, a fixed tension anchoring assembly, and means to incrementally increase or decrease resistance by use of either compression or expansion resistance means such as springs, bands and the like. Selective positioning of said springs, bands and the like, along the plane defined by said pivotal mast and tension anchoring assembly, enables the user to pre-select resistance at the striking surface. This new and novel adjustable strike training device has a quick rebound into the start position for combination training and enables each user to customize force needed to duplicate the feel of striking opponents of various sizes and weight classes.

Robinson, Charles Thomas (Virginia Beach, VA, US)
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Primary Examiner:
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Charles T. Robinson (Virginia Beach, VA, US)
I claim:

1. A selectively adjustable strike training device for practicing the martial arts, boxing strikes and the like comprising a base member; an elongate pivotal mast; said elongate pivotal mast having a striking pad affixed thereto; means to attach said pivotal mast pivotally to said base; a tension anchoring member; means to affix said tension anchoring member to said base in proximity of said pivotal mast; means to affix and position tensioning springs, bands and the like along the plane defined by said pivotal mast and tension anchoring member with means to reposition, expand, compress, remove or position additional said springs, bands and the like, to selectively change resistance at the striking pad.

2. A base according to claim 1 where said base comprises a part of a platform frame.

3. A base according to claim 1 wherein said base is attachable to a wall, floor, corner or pillar mounting fixture.

4. A base according to claim 1 wherein a bumper is affixed to said base and aligns with end of rebound delimiter.

5. A pivot defining member attached to said base comprising at least one pivot joining position to align with pivotal mast.

6. A striking pad according to claim 1 wherein said striking pad is vertically adjustable along the length of pivotal mast element

7. A positional location means according to claim 1 such as rails, knobs and the like on which expansion or compression means such as springs, bands and the like are selectively joined to and positioned on said pivotal mast and said tension anchor.



This application claims priority benefit of Provisional Patent Application 60/745,365 filed Apr. 21, 2006


In the field of martial arts, many devices have been employed to allow the individual adherent to practice and perfect the execution and delivery of combative strikes. Equipment, familiar to most practitioners of the art, are the suspended heavy bags, of leather, canvas or the like, configured in form, much like a dufflebag stuffed with sawdust, sand, rags, foam or other packing material.

These heavy bags come in various dimensions of length and girth, and in weights, most frequently between 50 and 100 pounds. Not withstanding their long use, they and other strike training equipment possess limitations that will be both addressed and remedied by this disclosure. Most important to note are that these striking bags and other strike training tools are not capable of providing a variable, and selectively pre-determined resistance at point of impact. Attempts to effect a change in the resistance at the point of strike, with heavy bags as an example, has run the gamut from having a plurality of different weighted bags, attaching weights or bungee cords to the bottom, and having people of various statures assist in steadying the bag to provide greater resistance to strikes and limit the movement of the bag on impact.

Most training facilities serve multiple users. As people are endless in variations of height, weight class, strength, skill level, etc., prior art may be suitable for only one user or a small number of users, or for one form of strike, practice or execution. Therefore, with present means it is possible, that a student may be either under or over challenged during any practice session.

Centuries ago, the Japanese devised a training system to increase striking power known as the makiwara. Essentially, the makiwara was a planed down and tapered length of lumber, normally of oak, poplar or ash, driven into the ground with about 4-5 feet extending above the surface. A striking pad was affixed toward the top of this exposed portion of the board and the student could practice both hand and foot, arm and leg strikes targeting this pad. The most important advantage of the makiwara is that it provided a spring like resistance when struck and as a punch, for example, hit the pad, resistance at the surface point of impact actually increased through the linear travel of the strike. This is the opposite in dynamics when striking a heavy bag or the like where the bag moves and/or absorbs the impact of strikes. When martial arts students were provided with multiple makiwara of various strengths in these training facilities, a progressive resistance program for strike training was attained. This resulted in the predictable development of a substantial increase in striking power.

The described training using multiple makiwara of various strengths, having the stated spring like feel and stated unique striking dynamic, served to increase striking power in much the same manner as progressive resistance weight training is known to increase muscle size, strength and lifting performance. This multiple makiwara training using various strength resistance and lengths, facilitated students in developing power, focus and effectiveness in striking different size opponents and in developing power using different parts of the body as strike weapons.

Modern versions of the makiwara are actually less effective and most are poorly constructed. Limited by the fact few people can now opt to train outside, bracket means are used to hold mostly inadequate 2×4 home center purchased lumber. The modern versions now being used indoors are mostly non-production home made equipment of poor or inconsistent quality, ineffective in design and “seat of the pants” engineered. Most important, with either the centuries old original or the modern configured versions, resistance cannot be adjusted for different ages, sizes and striking ability of students. Traditional training with a multiplicity of makiwara, although effective, has not adequately bridged the gap for use in modern boxing and martial arts gyms.

What has long been needed is a piece of strike training equipment possessing the following characteristics: capable of either portability or stationary attachment to the floor or wall; as appropriate to the environments of home or professional facility use; an adjustable makiwara spring like feel at the point of contact, comparable to the original makiwara; easily and infinitely adjustable, to enable users to practice various strikes at different and selectable resistance levels, and being able to take advantage of progressive resistance to develop power and focus. Additionally, such a long needed piece of equipment should be able to be configured with not only the small focus pad of the traditional makiwara, but also be capable of fabrication in a scaled up version with a larger striking pad target, allowing those training with the device to benefit using stated progressive resistance training with strike combinations.

Prior means used to overcome the aforementioned deficiencies have fallen short in key ways and it is an object of this invention to put forth remedy and to disclose novel means to further the art and correct such noted shortcomings.

For example U.S. Pat. No. 5,665,035 by Tumminia, discloses a corner only striking tool of a somewhat makiwara configuration. However, the striking pad is braced and negates a flexibility and particularly, the possibility of adjusting tension to match technique or user. Tumminia basically defines a platform for mounting various attachments and does not address adjusting for variable tension/resistance in a strike training tool.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,984,842 by Chu, discloses means to provide for some tension and rebound in a striking tool, however, fails to provide for progressive resistance training and is overly complex. Additionally, the multi axis design is contrary to the objective of this disclosure and likewise does not adjust and return into battery with a rebound delimiter, and therefore, does not result in quick return to the “start/at ready” position.

U.S. Pat. No. 4,093,212 by Jacques does provide for a modicum of progressive adjustment, but uses a weak single expansion spring that can be hand stretched to engage at different affixing hole locations, lacks an infinity of adjustment and is designed for only uppercut training.

U.S. Pat. No. 4,836,533 by Dong offers a makiwara like appearance but comprises a piston to effect resistance, however, hydraulic and or pneumatic adjusting means does not offer the duplication of the desired spring like feel, quick adjustment or rapid return into the “at ready/start” position.


What has long been needed is a strike training tool for the martial arts, boxing and the like that is infinitely adjustable as to the resistance at the point of impact, intuitive to use and suitable for either focus or combination strike training. Likewise, said strike training tool should have the ability to provide challenging training sessions to all skill levels of users and be suitable for perfecting the execution and form of numerous power and follow-up strikes. Said means should be simple, intuitive, durable, easy and economical to manufacture, transport and assemble.

This invention discloses such means comprising a base member enable the inventive device to be a stand alone unit, attached to the floor or movable, with or without a deck for the user to stand on; or attachable to a wall or pillar mount fixture; a pivotal mast that is pivotally attached to said base member; a tension anchoring assembly having a braced upright member, designed to add, remove, compress, expand or reposition springs, bands or the like in order to increase or decrease resistance at the point of striking impact.

The features of this invention and the preferred embodiments that illustrate both expansion and compression means to provide variable resistance at the striking pad surface, will become clearer by reference to the following drawings and descriptions. Unless otherwise noted, for the sake of clarity and for conceptual purposes, with the exception of the striking pad, bumper, springs and spring position fixtures, all parts should be considered fabricated of steel tubing or the like. While steel tubing is preferred over other materials, for simplicity, strength, economy and ease of manufacture, obviously other materials can be used.


FIG. 1 is a side elevation view of a first embodiment of the larger pad version of the invention illustrating the use of expansion springs.

FIG. 2 is a profile view of this first embodiment.

FIG. 3 is a sectional view from the rear, showing closer detail of the expansion spring mountings and adjusting members of this first embodiment.

FIG. 4 shows a side elevation view of the base and tension anchoring frame from the rear.

FIG. 5 shows a sectional view in profile of the bottom portion of the pivotal mast and rebound delimiter.

FIG. 6 shows a second embodiment in a side elevated view configured to behave in training like the first embodiment, but with an appearance more in keeping with the traditional makiwara and designed to use compression springs, or the like and having a smaller, makiwara like striking pad target. For a better view of the compression spring positioning knobs, the compression spring on this figure has been omitted.

FIG. 7 is a view in profile of this makiwara like embodiment, showing the same parts as in the previous figure, this time complete with a tension spring.


Use of the invention, in accordance with the embodiment of FIG. 1 the practitioner stands facing the striking pad (20) and delivers a strike to said pad. Pad (20) is attached to pivotal mast (30) by connecting member (35) and when struck, pad (20) connecting member (35) and pivotal mast (30), acting as one assembly, moves away from the user in an arc defined by its pivot attachment at pin or bolt or the like that penetrates through holes (95) in ears (90) and at the same time also penetrates through hole (100) in the lower portion of pivotal mast (30), that is housed between said ears forming the pivot point. When the pad reaches its fullest rearward movement as determined by the force of the strike and the selected resistance provided by the position of the expansion springs (40) on rails (45) & (47) springs (40) then contracts, the result being to rebound mast (30), connecting members (35) and pad (20) back toward the user. As the pad returns to the at ready position, the end portion of the rebound delimiter (60) returns into proximity and makes contact with bumper (80) and the forward return movement is then halted and striking pad (20) is again positioned, ready for the next strike.

If the user determines that more or less resistance is desirable to give the user the feel of striking a larger or smaller opponent, the user can reposition springs (40) either up or down along rails (45) & (47). There are four springs, two on each side of the inventive device, but springs can also be added or removed as desired. When springs (40) are repositioned upward, the tension and resistance at the striking pad increases, when springs (40) are repositioned by lowering their placement on rails (45) & (47) resistance at the striking pad decreases.

In this embodiment, the frame that holds positioning rail (47) is part of a stationary non-moveable sub-assembly comprised of brace (50) and upright (12) and is non-moveably affixed to base (70) and serves as the non-moveable tension anchor assembly when the novel invention uses expansion springs, bands and the like to effect resistance at striking pad (20).

As seen in the second embodiment with compression springs and a more makiwara like configuration, the function is identical. FIG. 7 shows this embodiment in profile. With this embodiment the user stands facing the striking pad (57) which is attached to a board (53) mounted to pivotal mast (51). Board (53) serves to provide a more traditional makiwara appearance but is optional in as far as being necessity as to the function of this invention.

When pad (57) is struck, pad (57), board (53) and pivotal beam (51), move together in a direction away from the user, in an arch defined by the length of beam (51) toward the spring anchor tensioning member (55). When the pad reaches its farthest travel, determined by force of strike and selected position of the spring, the compressive spring (91) moves the pivotal mast back toward the start position, halting when rebound foot (14), of rebound delimiter (13) returns into contact with rubber bumper (15) ending the forward movement of the pivotal mast (51) and striking pad.(20). Note that the pivot defining member (21) has a plurality of positioning through holes. Spring anchoring tensioning member (55) and pivotal mast (51) have through holes in their lower end portions and align with the through holes in the pivot defining member (21), a pivot action is achieved in pivotal mast (51) by use of a pin, bolt or the like that penetrates both the pivotal mast (51) and the pivot defining member (21) and anchoring/tension member (55) is non movably affixed to said pivot defining member by a bolt or the like and further immovably secured by brace means (67).

With either embodiment of the compression or expansion spring arrangement, there are three distinct ways in which tension can be increased or decreased to achieve desired goal of providing a selectable resistance when using the inventive device for strike training. The first is by the raising or lowering of the spring, springs or along the planes defined by the pivotal mast and spring anchoring adjusting member. The second is by adding or removing springs, or changing to springs of greater or lesser strength, and the third is by placing additional compression or expansion to the springs used with the novel strike training tool by repositioning spring rails or pivotal mast and anchoring members