Title:
HARNESS SYSTEM FOR MATTRESSES
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A harness system (20) comprising an endless loop (10) of material and a harness for holding a person in fixed position with respect to the endless loop of material. In use, the harness system is fitted around a mattress with the harness located on a sleeping face of the mattress. Upon revolution of the endless loop with respect to the mattress, the location of the harness on the sleeping face is adjusted.



Inventors:
Walsh-barltrop, Sharon (Coagh, GB)
Application Number:
12/090716
Publication Date:
12/24/2009
Filing Date:
10/19/2006
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47C31/00; A47D15/00; A61F5/37
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
LIU, JONATHAN
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WITHROW & TERRANOVA, P.L.L.C. (Cary, NC, US)
Claims:
1. A harness system comprising an endless loop of material and means for retaining a person in a substantially fixed position with respect to the endless loop of material, said endless loop of material being shaped and dimensioned to fit around a mattress such that said retaining means is located at a sleeping face of said mattress, wherein said endless loop of material is revolvable in use with respect to said mattress to adjust the location of said retaining means with respect to said sleeping face in a first direction and wherein said retaining means is arranged to hold said person such that their head-to-toe orientation is substantially parallel with said first direction.

2. A harness system as claimed in claim 1, wherein said endless loop is shaped and dimensioned to substantially cover at least a sleeping face and preferably also a reverse face of said mattress.

3. A harness system as claimed in claim 2, wherein said endless loop of material comprises a mattress cover.

4. A harness system as claimed in claim 1, wherein said endless loop of material is open sided.

5. A harness system as claimed in claim 1, wherein said retaining means is arranged to hold said person such that their head-to-toe orientation is substantially parallel with said endless loop.

6. A harness system as claimed in claim 1, wherein said endless loop is formed from one or more textile materials.

7. A harness system as claimed in claim 1, wherein said retaining means comprises a harness.

8. A harness system as claimed in claim 1, wherein said retaining means comprises at least one block.

9. A harness system as claimed in claim 1, wherein said retaining means is fixed to said endless loop of material.

10. A combined mattress and harness system, the harness system comprising an endless loop of material and means for retaining a person in a substantially fixed position with respect to the endless loop of material, the harness system being fitted around said mattress such that said retaining means is located at a sleeping face of said mattress, wherein said endless loop of material is revolvable with respect to said mattress to adjust the location of said retaining means with respect to said sleeping face a first direction and wherein said retaining means is arranged to hold said person such that their head-to-toe orientation is substantially parallel with said first direction.

11. A combined mattress and harness system as claimed in claim 10, wherein said endless loop of material is shaped and dimensioned to be substantially self-retaining on said mattress.

12. (canceled)

13. A combined mattress and harness system as claimed in claim 10, wherein said first direction is substantially parallel with the longitudinal axis of the mattress.

14. (canceled)

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to bedding. In particular the present invention relates to a harness system for maintaining a person in a desired position on a mattress.

BACKGROUND TO THE INVENTION

It is currently recommended that babies and infants sleep on their backs, preferably at the foot of a cot or bed. However, infants in a cot can inadvertently roll onto their front or under the sheets and potentially endanger themselves. Moreover, older children commonly fall from bed and sustain injury. It would be desirable to provide a system that mitigates these problems.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

A first aspect of the invention provides a harness system comprising an endless loop of material and means for retaining a person in a substantially fixed position with respect to the endless loop of material, said endless loop of material being shaped and dimensioned to fit around a mattress.

A second aspect of the invention provides a combined mattress and harness system, the harness system comprising an endless loop of material and means for retaining a person in a substantially fixed position with respect to the endless loop of material, the harness system being fitted around said mattress.

The preferred arrangement is such that, when fitted to a mattress, the loop extends around a first (typically transverse) axis of the mattress, the harness being arranged so that in use, the person lies substantially perpendicular to the first axis of the mattress, the mattress cover being revolvable relative to the mattress in a direction substantially perpendicular with said first axis to adjust the position of the harness on the mattress.

The loop or mattress cover may take the form of an open-sided loop, or may be closable, or closed, along at least one side. The loop or mattress cover can be dimensioned to fit different sizes and shapes of mattress, from, for example, a cot mattress to a conventional single or double sized mattress. Additionally the loop or mattress cover may be made from material such as cotton or any other suitable material, typically textiles.

The harness may comprise at least one chest strap and at least one, preferably two, shoulder straps. It is preferable if the at least one chest strap and the at least one, preferably two, shoulder straps can be adjusted separately to suit an individual's size.

The harness may be coupled to the loop or mattress cover at a midpoint, along the width of the loop. The coupling of the harness to the mattress cover may be permanent or releasable to allow for example, washing or replacing of the harness and loop mattress cover separately.

The mattress cover and harness system can include a securing strap for securing the mattress cover to the mattress and/or to a bed frame.

In use the harness system can be rotated relative to the mattress to adjust the position of the harness with respect to the mattress. This allows a person of a particular height to lie on the mattress at a desired location. For example, a person can lie with their feet at the foot of the mattress/bed or alternatively with their head at the head of the mattress/bed.

The harness system may be used to maintain a person, such as an infant, child or disabled person in a desired location and/or orientation on a mattress.

Further advantageous aspects of the invention will become apparent to those ordinarily skilled in the art upon review of the following description of a specific embodiment and with reference to the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

An embodiment of the invention is now described by way of example and with reference to the accompanying drawings in which like numerals are used to indicate like parts and in which:

FIG. 1 shows a perspective view of a mattress and a mattress cover suitable for use in harness systems embodying the invention.

FIG. 2 shows a plan view of a harness system embodying the invention.

FIG. 3 shows a perspective view of the harness system of FIG. 2, in use; and

FIG. 4 shows a side view of the harness system in use.

DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Referring now to FIG. 1 of the drawings, there is shown, indicated as 10, a mattress cover in the form of an endless loop or length of material. The loop is typically, but not necessarily, open sided and may conveniently be formed from a sheet of material e.g., a cotton sheet. The mattress cover 10 forms part of a harness system 20 (FIG. 2) embodying the present invention, as described in more detail hereinafter.

In use, mattress cover 10 is fitted around a mattress 12. The cover or loop 10 is preferably shaped and dimensioned to fit the mattress 12 such that it is substantially self-retaining on the mattress, i.e. fitting closely enough to prevent it from falling off the mattress 12 while also allowing it to be revolved around the mattress 12 (as is described hereinafter). The cover or loop 10 may be elasticised (e.g. it may be elasticised along its edges and/or may be formed wholly or partially from an elasticised material) to facilitate fitting it to the mattress 12, although this can hamper the revolution of the cover 10. It is preferred that the loop/cover 10 is non-elasticised.

When fitted, the cover 10 typically runs around the mattress 12 to substantially cover it on both its sleeping face 13 and its reverse face 15. Typically, the cover 10 runs around a transverse axis of the mattress 12 and so covers the head and foot portions 17, 23 of the mattress 12. Preferably, the cover 10 is open sided so that there are no side portions or panels to cover the side faces 21 of the mattress 12, as shown in FIG. 1.

Retaining means in the preferred form of a harness 14 (FIG. 2) is coupled or attached, permanently or releasably, to the cover 10. The harness 14 is configured to hold a person, especially an infant or child, in a fixed position and/or orientation with respect to the cover 10. The harness 14 may for example comprise at least one chest strap 16 and preferably two shoulder straps 18, each strap having, for example, hook and loop type fastenings 19. The harness 14 or retaining means may take any other form suitable for holding a person in a desired position and may for example comprise a combination of one or more straps and/or one or more support blocks.

In use, the harness system 20 can be rotated, revolved or otherwise adjusted (as indicated by arrow A) relative to the mattress 12 to adjust the distance between the harness 14 and the head or foot of the mattress 12. This positions the harness 14 at a desired location along the length of the mattress 12. In FIGS. 3 and 4 the harness 14 is positioned so that an infant, child or other person 22 of a particular height can lie on the mattress 12 with his feet at the foot of the mattress 12/bed 24. Alternatively harness system 20 could be rotated relative to the mattress 12 to position the harness 14 so that the person can lie with their head at the head of the mattress 12/bed 24.

As shown in FIGS. 3 and 4, the person 22 can be located within the harness 14 and with the chest strap 16 and shoulder straps 18 secured. Hence the system 20 allows the person 22 to be maintained not only at a desired location on the mattress but also in a desired orientation, e.g. lying on their back. The person 22 can remove himself or herself easily, or can readily be removed from, the harness 14 by undoing the straps.

Optionally, a securing strap 26 may be provided for securing the cover 10 to the mattress 12. The strap 26 is particularly intended to prevent further rotation of the cover 10 and so is configured to attach the cover 10 to the mattress 12 by means of, for example, a button or other fastener (not shown). Alternatively, or in addition, one or more further straps or fasteners (not shown) may be provided for preventing the cover 10 from coming off the mattress 12.

In the illustrated embodiment, the loop/cover 10 fits longitudinally around the mattress 12, i.e. around the normal head and foot of the mattress 12 with the sides of the mattress 12 being exposed. The harness 14 is arranged such that the head-to-toe orientation of the person 22 is substantially parallel with the loop 10 and so, in the present example, the person lies substantially parallel with the longitudinal axis of the mattress 12. In an alternative embodiment, the loop/cover may be shaped and dimensioned to fit transversely around the mattress, i.e. around the mattress from side to side with the normal head and foot of the mattress being exposed by the loop. The harness may be arranged such that the head-to-toe orientation of the person is substantially parallel with the loop which, in this case, means that the person lies substantially parallel with the transverse axis of the mattress 12. The alternative embodiment is particularly useful in cases where more than one person, e.g. twins, is to lie on the mattress since two or more harnesses (or other retaining means) may be located adjacent one another on the cover/loop.

The present invention is not limited to the embodiment(s) described herein, which may be modified or varied without departing from the scope of the present invention.