Title:
Custom Exercise video website
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The custom exercise video website implements a computerized method for development of a personal fitness/wellness training regimen that is uniquely tailored to an individual user's needs. The website provides a user interface that can accept user inputs related to the user's desire for physical therapy and/or exercise of a body part, muscle group or series of muscle groups. Based on the user inputs, system processing creates a multimedia playlist linking discrete video clips together to form a unique exercise program having clips that have been sequentially ordered by the user. A user-selectable running time is also provided. The website provides an option to add a user-specified music track to the exercise video. The music volume will automatically adjust down when the audio from the clips is on. The video is formatted in a digital file that can be played by a variety of media players.



Inventors:
Joubert, Karen L. (Pacific Palisades, CA, US)
Adams, Robert E. (Studio City, CA, US)
Application Number:
12/230760
Publication Date:
03/19/2009
Filing Date:
09/04/2008
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63B71/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20060046901Linking mechanism for exerciserMarch, 2006Pan et al.
20090048068Touch type panel switch for a swing arm of an exercise apparatusFebruary, 2009Wang
20090286657Fitness method mnemotoniaNovember, 2009Sveshnikov
20020160892METHOD OF PREVENTING DEEP VEIN THROMBOSIS CAUSED BY LONG AIRPLANE TRAVELSOctober, 2002Rovinsky et al.
20040043876Therapeutic exercise deviceMarch, 2004Craciunescu
20020128121Ladder exercise systemSeptember, 2002Welch et al.
20080182729Martial arts training deviceJuly, 2008Ziska et al.
20090149304Flexible exercise device and related systemsJune, 2009Smith
20070232464Counter-gravity chin up and all body exercise machineOctober, 2007Chu
20080004165Self spotting barbell pressJanuary, 2008Brawner
20030207736Infant walker/trainerNovember, 2003Gerardo Jr.



Primary Examiner:
THAI, XUAN MARIAN
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Richard C. Litman (Alexandria, VA, US)
Claims:
We claim:

1. A custom exercise video website, comprising: a web server adapted for connection to a network; a file server having a plurality of multimedia files stored thereon, the plurality of multimedia files demonstrating exercises; an application server software program stored on and executing on the web server, the application server software program having: means for publishing a plurality of web pages establishing a custom exercise video creating website; means for selecting a link to web pages on the website, the web pages relating to exercises affecting a user-selected part of the user's body; means for selecting a link to and retrieving the exercise demonstrating multimedia files stored on the file server; means for consolidating the retrieved multimedia files in a user-selected sequence to form an exercise program video; multimedia track mixing software, the multimedia track mixing software adding a user specified music track to the exercise program video; and means for downloading the exercise program video to a client connected to the network for storage and playback on a client's media player.

2. The custom exercise video website according to claim 1, further comprising a duck music under voice feature, the duck music under voice feature automatically adjusting down the user added music track in track locations where the exercise video clip has vocal instructions.

3. The custom exercise video website according to claim 1, wherein the video is formatted in a digital file that can be played by a variety of media players.

4. The custom exercise video website according to claim 1, wherein the multimedia files stored on the file server include exercise video clip groups associated with a plurality of exercise types defining targeted muscle groups, individual video clips in the video clip groups being selectable by the user for incorporation into the custom exercise video.

5. The custom exercise video website according to claim 1, wherein the multimedia files are stored in a flat file format.

6. The custom exercise video website according to claim 1, wherein the multimedia files are stored in a relational database.

7. The custom exercise video website according to claim 1, wherein the multimedia files are stored in a hierarchical database.

8. The custom exercise video website according to claim 1, wherein the multimedia files are stored in an object database.

9. The custom exercise video website according to claim 1, further comprising a transaction server connected to the custom exercise video website, the transaction server accepting on-line payment for user-requested exercise videos provided by the website.

10. The custom exercise video website according to claim 9, wherein a set of business rules are stored in the transaction server, the business rules implementing customer loyalty programs and repeat customer discounts.

11. The custom exercise video website according to claim 1, wherein the means for selecting a link to and retrieving the exercise demonstrating multimedia files stored on the file server further comprises means for selecting a single clip any desired number of times to create a user-determined number of sets of that exercise.

12. A computerized method for delivering a customized exercise program through a website, comprising the steps of: storing a plurality of multimedia clips in a database accessible to an application server, each of the multimedia clips including demonstrations of a specific exercise related to a specific area of the body; displaying to a user a page served by the application server, the page having a plurality of links describing a corresponding plurality of the specific areas of the body; displaying, responsive to user selection of one of the displayed links, a menu including a related plurality of exercises; providing a multimedia clip playlist on the page, the multimedia clip playlist being accessible by the user; providing an object transfer function on the page allowing the user to transfer selected exercises from the menu to the playlist in a user desired order; and providing a mixdown function, the mixdown function allowing the user to specify a music track, the mixdown function mixing the user specified music track to the exercise program video; wherein individual multimedia clips are sequentially ordered in the multimedia playlist to provide a custom exercise video designed by the user.

13. The computerized method for delivering a customized exercise program through a website according to claim 12, wherein the object transfer function comprises a drag and drop feature on the page allowing the user to drag and drop selected exercises from the menu to the playlist in the user desired order.

14. The computerized method for delivering a customized exercise program through a website according to claim 12, further comprising the step of automatically adjusting down the user added music track in track locations where the exercise video clip has vocal instructions.

15. The computerized method for delivering a customized exercise program through a website according to claim 12, further comprising the step of formatting the video in a digital file that can be played by a variety of media players.

16. The computerized method for delivering a customized exercise program through a website according to claim 12, further comprising the step of including within the stored multimedia clips exercise video clip groups associated with a plurality of exercise types defining targeted muscle groups, individual video clips in the video clip groups being selectable by the user for incorporation into the custom exercise video.

17. The computerized method for delivering a customized exercise program through a website according to claim 12, further comprising the step of accepting on-line payment for user-requested exercise videos provided by the website.

18. The computerized method for delivering a customized exercise program through a website according to claim 12, further comprising the step of providing a set of business rules implementing customer loyalty programs and repeat customer discounts.

19. The computerized method for delivering a customized exercise program through a website according to claim 12, wherein the object transfer providing step further comprises allowing the user to select a single clip any desired number of times thereby creating a user-determined number of sets of that exercise.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 60/960,116, filed Sep. 17, 2007.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates generally to personal exercise routine development and, more particularly, relates to a custom exercise video website that permits a user to download exercise video demonstrations with audio instruction and user-selectable musical accompaniment to a PC, iPod® (ipod is a registered trademark of Apple, Inc. of Cupertino, Calif.), MP3, or other media playback device.

2. Description of the Related Art

Exercise routines, such as aerobic exercise routines, strength training routines, and flexibility training routines are available from books, television, DVD's and the Internet. Exercise clubs and gyms provide even more specific exercise opportunities. Following routines provided in books, television, the Internet, clubs, or gyms can often improve an individual's level of fitness. However, these routines are usually predetermined and directed to broad categories of individuals. For example, an exercise routine, such as a strength training program, may be directed to intermediate weight training students and may meet the needs of a twenty-five year old male, but it will seldom meet the specific needs of a twenty-five year old male who has very aggressive weight training goals.

Routines that are not tailored to an individual's needs often do not help the individual efficiently meet his/her goals. A workout plan from a book also does not provide the motivation that comes from a custom video demonstration designed to address a specific fitness regimen. An individual who is unable to efficiently meet his/her goals due to a lack of a customized exercise program is likely to become discouraged and discontinue his/her exercise routine.

Thus a customized exercise video website solving the aforementioned problems is desired.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The custom exercise video website embodies a computer-implemented method for development of a personal fitness/wellness training regimen that is uniquely tailored to an individual user's needs. The website provides a user interface that can accept user inputs related to the user's desire for physical therapy and/or exercise of a body part, muscle group or series of muscle groups. Based on the user inputs, system processing creates a video playlist linking discrete exercise video clips together to form a unique exercise video consistent with the user's abilities, desires, and training goals. A user-selectable running time is also provided. The website provides an option to add a user specified music track to the exercise video. The music volume will automatically adjust down when the audio from the clips is on. The video is formatted in a digital file that can be played by a variety of media players.

These and other features of the present invention will become readily apparent upon further review of the following specification and drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1A is a block diagram of a custom exercise video website according to the present invention.

FIG. 1B is a screenshot of a representative login page of a custom exercise video website according to the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a screenshot of a representative exercise select and download page of a custom exercise video website according to the present invention.

Similar reference characters denote corresponding features consistently throughout the attached drawings.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

The present invention relates to a custom exercise video website that implements a computerized method for development of a personal fitness/wellness training regimen that is uniquely tailored to an individual user's needs. The website provides a user interface that can accept user inputs related to the user's desire for physical therapy and/or exercise of a body part, muscle group or series of muscle groups.

Based on the user inputs, system processing creates a video playlist linking discrete exercise video clips together to form a unique exercise video consistent with the user's abilities, desires, and training goals. A user-selectable running time is also provided. The website provides an option to add a user specified music track to the exercise video.

The music volume will automatically adjust down when the video clip audio is on. The video is formatted in a digital file that can be played by a variety of media players.

As shown in FIG. 1, the website operates in a system 100 that may be connected to user computers 120 via the Internet 102 or other web-based network supporting the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP). Exercise software may execute in application server 105, utilizing mass storage unit 110 for storage in a database of a plurality of exercise video clip groups associated with a plurality of exercise types defining targeted muscle groups and/or body parts for exercise. A variety of database storage techniques including, but not limited to, flat files, relational databases, hierarchical databases, and object databases may be employed to store, update and retrieve the video clip groups utilizing mass storage unit 110 or other suitable storage device accessible to the application server 105.

Additionally, a transaction server 106 may be connected to the network 102 for accepting on-line payment for user-requested exercise services provided by server 105. Transaction server 106 may be configured to accept predetermined payment amounts from a user based upon a plurality of predetermined video running times, which can be selected by the user from a menu presented by the website over the system 100. A transaction database storing customer transaction information may be maintained and updated via access of server 106 to mass storage unit 115. Moreover, a set of business rules may be stored in the transaction server 106, the business rules implementing customer loyalty programs, repeat customer discounts, and the like.

Preferably, server 105 includes web server capability, and may be based upon any of the well-known, readily available Internet web server platforms, such as an Intel-compatible personal computer running Microsoft's Windows XP® operating system, Mac® OS, and/or any other type of web server running exemplary operating systems such as LINUX, UNIX®, or the like. To facilitate the dynamic nature of the web pages served up according to the inventive structures and methods described herein, an exemplary web server may be configured to run PHP hypertext preprocessor (PHP) server side scripting, or the Microsoft® Active Server Pages server side scripting (ASP.net), or the like. While FIG. 1A illustrates a single application server 105, web server and application server software may be implemented in a distributed processing environment across a plurality of hardware devices capable of running the website software.

Utilizing web-enabled device 120, the user may direct his or her web browser to the address or Universal Resource Locator (“URL”) of server 105 to access web pages and forms, such as HTML, XTML, Common Gateway Interface (“CGI”), JAVA, JAVASCRIPT, all of which are well known within the art.

Server 105 provides the user with various drag and drop options to create a customized exercise video by arranging a variety of exercise video clips in a user-specified order of play. The video clips may be in the form of any of many well-known digital video formats, such as Moving Picture Experts Group (“MPEG”), Quick Time container file (“MOV”) or Windows Media Video (“WMV”). The system provides means for downloading the aforementioned files to a user device, such as a personal computer, personal media player, ipod, MP3, or other multimedia playback device.

User computing system 120 may be any web-enabled device, such as, but not limited to, a personal computer (PC), a personal digital assistant (PDA), a smartphone, or the like. Preferably, the user may view the website on the aforementioned devices and download the video clips to a client application to be mixed with music and re-encoded.

As shown in FIG. 1B, the website provides a user interface that includes user login screen 160. The user may gain access to the features of the custom exercise video website by logging into the system with a username and password entry on login web page 160. As shown in FIG. 2, after the website has validated the user's name and password, the website presents an exercise selection web page 200.

Exercise selection page 200 may display a list of image hypertext links to multimedia clips describing a variety of exercises, which the user may select. For example, if the “shoulder” exercise is selected by the user, exercises 202a-202e may be presented as a list of exercise names, which may be accompanied by corresponding thumbnail images on exercise selection page 200. The website provides a drag and drop feature, which allows the user to drag any of the presented exercise names and/or thumbnails shown across the exercise selection page 200 and drop the selected exercise name and/or thumbnail to video clip sequencing area 205.

While the exemplary order of play sequencing from start to finish is shown in video clip sequencing area 205 in a top to bottom manner, it is also contemplated that the order of play may be displayed in a left to right manner, right to left manner, clockwise manner, counterclockwise manner, or the like. The user may drag and drop a desired number of video clips selectable from the exercise group shown in clips 202a-202e from the exercise selection page 200 into a desired order of play in the media clip sequencing area 205 of the exercise selection page 200.

Moreover, the user may drag and drop a single clip any desired number of times to create a user-determined number of sets of that exercise. Additionally, the user may preview the customized exercise video or media program he/she has just created. As shown in FIG. 2, a user selected from video clips 202a-202e to create a customized video sequence comprising, in sequential order, video clip 202d, then video clip 202b, then video clip 202a.

The system 100 optionally may provide a media player 210 on the web page, which may be displayed in preview-download screen area 207. If provided, media player 210 allows the user to preview and then download the customized video movie or media exercise program. The media player 210 may have a play/pause button 211, a reverse button 209a, and an advance button 209b.

The user may review and edit the customized program outlined in the video clip sequencing area 205 by using a mouse or other control to delete clips, add clips, or rearrange clip sequences in the sequencing area 205. Once the user is satisfied with his/her exercise media program, download button 213 may be activated to initiate download of the program to the user's computing device 120 or a storage device for a media player.

The website 100 may also provide for downloading a client resident computer program, applet, application, script, or the like, which is capable of adding a user-selected music track to the exercise video. The client application includes automated sound mixing that fades the music down to a background level, thus assuring that sections of the media program having verbal instructions concerning the exercise routine being viewed are in the foreground and clearly audible.

The website may be implemented in software, firmware or some combination thereof. The programming language is not critical because the required video clip sequences and playlist arrangements can be processed using a variety of well-known languages, including “C”, Java, “C++”, C sharp (“C#”) Adobe® FLEX, ASP.net, or the like. Soundtrack software for user development of a soundtrack synchronized to the video clip sequences can be in the form of an Apple® Itunes® interface, such as a Quicktime® API. Additional music media interfaces that can synchronize WAV files, MPG files, MID files, or the like are contemplated as being within the scope of the invention.

The website implements a computerized method having steps that include: providing a membership info page 160 to the user; providing login username and password fields to allow the user to sign into the exercise video website associated with membership info page 160; providing username and password creation fields for new users who do not have an existing username and password; providing a transaction processor server 106 to allow users to purchase exercise video running times in predetermined duration amounts; presenting groups of exercises in the form of hypertext mark-up language (HTML) links selectable by the user; and displaying a plurality of exercise video clips based on a user-selected HTML link that represents a particular exercise group desired by the user.

For example, the left-hand side of exercise selection page 200 has a list of therapy exercise groups that the user may choose from, including CERVICAL, SHOULDER, WRIST/HAND, BACK/LUMBAR SPINE, HIP/KNEE, ANKLE/FOOT, CORE/TRUNK, and THERAPEUTIC BALL. When the user chooses a specific body area from the list, e.g., SHOULDER, a list of shoulder exercises available will appear in a drop down menu 290. As the user “clicks” on an exercise in the drop down menu 290, a thumbnail of that exercise will appear on the right. As shown in FIG. 2, the user has selected five shoulder exercises from the drop down menu and the system software has placed their names and corresponding thumbnail pictures 202a-202e to the right of the menu 290. The system 100 provides a drag and drop feature that allows the user to add a desired exercise to the video playlist in screen area 205.

Providing user interface functions, such as drag and drop and media player controls, allows the user to arrange play order of the exercises in any manner, thereby creating a playlist of the video clips (exemplary order of play being 202d then 202b then 202a). Optional provision of a media player allows the user to preview his/her playlist of video clips. Providing an edit function allows the user to add, delete, and rearrange the order of play of the video clips comprising the exercise video movie. Providing a download function allows the user to download the complete exercise video to the user's computing device 120 or a storage medium for a media player.

A client-side computer program may be provided to allow the user to mix in a user-selected soundtrack. A client-side computer program may also be provided to automatically adjust the music down in portions of the audio or video having verbal instructions relating to the exercise being viewed.

After the final touch of adding the music soundtrack, the user created exercise program is ready for playback on the user's device 120. Thus, the custom exercise video website and computerized method steps described herein provide a more personalized system and method, which arranges a plurality of the video clips to produce a user-customizable exercise video.

It is to be understood that the present invention is not limited to the embodiment described above, but encompasses any and all embodiments within the scope of the following claims.