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Publication numberUS20020004439 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 09/780,282
Publication dateJan 10, 2002
Filing dateFeb 9, 2001
Priority dateFeb 9, 2000
Publication number09780282, 780282, US 2002/0004439 A1, US 2002/004439 A1, US 20020004439 A1, US 20020004439A1, US 2002004439 A1, US 2002004439A1, US-A1-20020004439, US-A1-2002004439, US2002/0004439A1, US2002/004439A1, US20020004439 A1, US20020004439A1, US2002004439 A1, US2002004439A1
InventorsRichard Galbraith, Neal Iund, Kary Richardson, Joshua Poulsen
Original AssigneeGalbraith Richard Scott, Iund Neal Alexander, Richardson Kary Dell, Poulsen Joshua Brent
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Multi-position exercise bicycle
US 20020004439 A1
Abstract
An exercise bicycle has a frame with longitudinal, lateral, and transverse directions substantially orthogonal to one another. A crank, characterized by a crank axis and corresponding axial and radial directions, connects to a rotational resistance mechanism. The frame is configured to selectively support a user in either a first, classical, position and a second, semi-recumbent, position.
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Claims(20)
What is claimed and desired to be secured by United States Letters Patent is:
1. An apparatus, the apparatus comprising:
a frame having longitudinal, lateral, and transverse directions substantially orthogonal to one another;
a crank, characterized by a crank axis and corresponding axial and radial directions, the crank being connected to the frame to rotate about the crank axis; and
the frame further configured to selectively support a user in a first, classical, riding position and a second, semi-recumbent, riding position.
2. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein the frame is further characterized by a first seating location corresponding to the first riding position and a second seating location corresponding to the second riding position, the frame being configured to position a hip joint of a user substantially the same radial distance from the crank axis when a user is in the first seating location and in the second seating location.
3. The apparatus of claim 2, wherein the second seating location is spaced radially and substantially longitudinally behind the crank axis.
4. The apparatus of claim 2, wherein the first seating location is spaced radially and substantially transversely above the crank axis.
5. The apparatus of claim 4, wherein the second seating location is spaced radially and substantially longitudinally behind the crank axis.
6. The apparatus of claim 5, further comprising:
a handlebar; and
the frame, further comprising a first post having a proximal end secured to extend away therefrom and a distal end configured to secure the handlebar.
7. The apparatus of claim 6, wherein the first post is pivotably secured to support the handlebar in a first handlebar position, corresponding to the first riding position, and a second handlebar position, corresponding to the second riding position.
8. The apparatus of claim 7, the apparatus further comprising:
at least one seat; and
the frame further comprising a second post having a proximal end secured to extend away therefrom and a distal end configured to support the at least one seat.
9. The apparatus of claim 8, wherein the second post is pivotably secured to support the at least one seat in a first seat position, corresponding to the first riding position, and a second seat position, corresponding to the second riding position.
10. The apparatus of claim 9, wherein the crank is connected to drive a resistance mechanism.
11. The apparatus of claim 10, wherein the resistance mechanism is a rotational resistance mechanism selected from the group consisting of a friction belt, an electromagnetic wheel, a disk brake, a drum brake, a fluid damper, and an air fan.
12. The apparatus of claim 11, further comprising a console having a control module configured to control resistance of the resistance mechanism.
13. The apparatus of claim 1 comprising:
a handlebar; and
the frame, further comprising a first post having a proximal end secured to extend away therefrom and a distal end configured to secure the handlebar.
14. The apparatus of claim 1, further comprising a first post and a handlebar, the first post pivotably secured to support the handlebar in a first handlebar position, corresponding to the first riding position, and a second handlebar position, corresponding to the second riding position.
15. The apparatus of claim 1, further comprising:
at least one seat; and
the frame further comprising a second post having a proximal end secured to extend away therefrom and a distal end configured to support the at least one seat.
16. The apparatus of claim 1, further comprising a second post and at least one seat, wherein the second post is pivotably secured to support the at least one seat in a first seat position, corresponding to the first riding position, and a second seat position, corresponding to the second riding position.
17. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein the crank is connected to drive a resistance mechanism.
18. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein the crank is operably connected to a resistance mechanism selected from the group consisting of a friction belt, an electromagnetic wheel, a disk brake, a drum brake, a fluid damper, and an air fan.
19. The apparatus of claim 1, further comprising a console connected to the frame and including a control module configured to control resistance of the resistance mechanism.
20. A method comprising:
providing a frame having longitudinal, lateral, and transverse directions substantially orthogonal to one another;
providing a crank, characterized by a crank axis and corresponding axial and radial directions, the crank being connected to the frame to rotate about the crank axis; and
configuring the frame to support a user of arbitrary stature selectively in a first, classical, position and a second, semi-recumbent, position, positioning a hip joint of a user at substantially the same radial distance from the crank axis when a user is in the first position and in the second position.
Description
RELATED APPLICATIONS

[0001] This application is a continuation of United States Provisional Patent Application, Serial No. 60/181,398, filed on Feb. 9, 2000 and directed to a Multi-Position Exercise Bike.

BACKGROUND

[0002] 1. The Field of the Invention

[0003] This invention relates to exercise equipment and, more particularly, to novel systems and methods for configuring an exercise bicycle.

[0004] 2. The Background

[0005] In an effort to generally improve one's health, many people regularly exercise. Some may be motivated by a desire to lose excess weight, while others may be motivated to exercise so that they feel invigorated and have the energy they need to better perform daily activities. Still, others may exercise to combat the effects of a physical ailments such as heart disease, injury, or diabetes.

[0006] Many methods of exercising exist. Fitness centers have been developed to provide a location where paying members may use a variety of exercise equipment and participate in aerobic classes. These fitness centers, however, are typically expensive and involve travel time. As appreciated by those who exercise, it is possible to walk, run, cycle, or the like outdoors. However, outdoor activities are often limited by the weather. In many locations, winter conditions make outdoor exercise unpleasant. Furthermore, outdoor exercise can prove to be a safety hazard for persons exercising alone.

[0007] Indoor exercise bicycles have proven to be an effective and popular choice of exercise equipment. An exercise bicycle allows a user to exercise in the privacy of his/her home or apartment. A user, therefore, is no longer limited by the weather or the time of day.

[0008] The exercise bicycle can provide exercise throughout a range of difficulty by varying the crank rotational resistance. Exercise bicycles are simple to operate and provide low impact exercise. The crank of an exercise bicycle cycles the legs of a user through a large range of motion. The low impact exercise and large range of motion combine to make exercise bicycles a popular choice for lower body rehabilitation.

[0009] Current exercise bicycles can be classified into three categories; (1) common bicycle held stationary while applying resistance to the rear wheel, (2) sitting exercise bicycles, and (3) semi-recumbent exercise bicycles. Units of the bicycle type are typically used by persons who want to simulate outdoor cycling for training purposes. With this form of exercise bicycle, the weight of a user may be supported by both a handlebar and a seat. The sitting type refers to exercise bicycles where the user's weight is substantially supported by a seat and the crank and pedals are positioned below and shortly forward of the user. The semi-recumbent type refers to exercise bicycles where the user's weight is substantially supported by a seat and possibly a seat back. The crank and pedals are positioned substantially forward of the user on a substantially equal level with the seat.

[0010] Each type of exercise bicycle exercises somewhat different muscle groups. The different configurations of exercise bicycles also provide differing levels of comfort for each users. For example, the classical position of a machine of the bicycle type provides the realistic body position and motion that are essential for accurate simulation of outdoor cycling. The classical position, however, may require a significant portion of the user's weight to be supported by the arms and upper body of the user. Such a position may be uncomfortable for an elderly user.

[0011] It would be an advancement in the field to provide an exercise bicycle on which a user is able to accurately simulate the classical cycling position, while also allowing for an alternate semi-recumbent position. Such a bicycle would increase the range of users of differing abilities that may efficiently exercise with a single bicycle. Additionally, such a bicycle would provide a variety of workouts for a user, thus, promoting interest and provide a method for exercising different muscle groups.

BRIEF SUMMARY AND OBJECTS OF THE INVENTION

[0012] In view of the foregoing, it is a primary object of the present invention to provide an exercise bicycle that provides both a classical and a semi-recumbent exercise position.

[0013] It is an object of the invention to provide an exercise bicycle which provides an accurate classical position for simulation of outdoor cycling.

[0014] It is an object of the invention to provide an exercise bicycle that may shift from the classical position to the semi-recumbent position with minimal user adjustment.

[0015] It is an object of the invention to provide an exercise bicycle that may be fully adjustable in order to accommodate the stature of a variety of users.

[0016] Consistent with the foregoing objects, and in accordance with the invention as embodied and broadly described herein, a method and apparatus of the present invention are disclosed. In one presently preferred embodiment, the exercise bicycle may be configured to have a frame. The frame may be configured to have a crossbar connecting a plurality of legs and stabilizers. The legs may be configured to support the crossbar away from a supporting surface. The stabilizers may be configured to maintain the exercise bicycle in a proper vertical orientation.

[0017] In one presently preferred embodiment, a handlebar post may be configured to operably secured to the crossbar. The handlebar post may be configured to pivot with respect to the crossbar by means of a bearing. A base for the handlebar post may be configured to house the bearing. An extension may be configured to slide in and out of the base to provide lengthening and shortening of the handlebar post. A lock may be provided to maintain the extension at a desired location with respect to the base.

[0018] A stem may be configured to secure to the distal end of the extension. The stem secures a handlebar to the handlebar post. The handlebar provides a location for the user to stabilize and support himself/herself. Additionally, the handlebar provides a location for controls and readouts that may be accessible to a user while operating the exercise bicycle. Pivoting the handlebar post allows access to the controls while the user is in either a classical position or a semi-recumbent position.

[0019] Similar to the handlebar post, a seat post may be configured to operably secure to the crossbar. The seat post may also have a base with a bearing and an extension for providing length adjustment. The seat post may be further configured to have an adaptor secured at a distal end. The adaptor may provide a location for securing a seat.

[0020] A bar may pivotably connect to the handlebar post and the seat post. The bar allows the handlebar post and the seat post to move in unison from the classical position to the semi-recumbent position. The bar may be thought of as a drag link to synchronize motion.

[0021] The classical position may be defined as the typical position of a user on a conventional bicycle. In such a position, the seat is located above and slightly behind the crank. The balls of the user's feet are substantially in contact the pedals of the crank. The legs of the user extended primarily downward are slightly bent at the knee when the pedal passes through the lowest region of the pedal stroke. In the classical position, a significant portion of the user's weight may be supported by the user's arms, which transfer the load to the handlebar.

[0022] The semi-recumbent position may be defined as a sitting position with the legs of the user extending primarily forward. The crank is located in front of the seat and approximately the same level as the seat. The balls of the user's feet are substantially in contact the pedals of the crank. The legs of the user are preferably slightly bent at the knee when the pedal passes through the most forward region of the pedal stoke. Substantially all of the weight of a user is supported by the seat. A seat back provides support in a horizontal direction.

[0023] A post lock may attach near the pivot of the handlebar post, the seat post, or both. In one presently preferred embodiment, the post lock may attach to the seat post and maintain it in a classical bicycling position. When the seat post is locked in the classical position, the bar connecting the seat post to the handlebar post secures the handlebar post in a substantially vertical position. In bicycles, substantially vertical orientations are almost never exactly vertical as geometries are selected for system strength and user comfort. When the post lock is released, the seat post and handlebar post recline to new positions provides a semi-recumbent position for the user.

[0024] In one presently preferred embodiment, in the semi-recumbent position, the bicycling seat may be removed and replaced with a chair-like seat. The chair may be configured with a bottom for supporting the weight of a user and a back for providing longitudinal positioning and support. The chair seat may further be configured to have stabilizing handlebars to aid the user in maintaining a proper balance. Additionally, the chair seat may be adjusted to tilt forward or backward to provide a variety of seating positions.

[0025] In an alternate embodiment, the seat post may be easily removed from the frame. The extension of the seat post may be removed from the base, which may be rigidly secured to the crossbar of the frame. The bar may easily release the front the handlebar post. With the seat post and bar removed, the handlebar post may pivot to provide a user in the semi-recumbent position comfortable access to the handlebar. The chair-like seat of the semi-recumbent position may be permanently secured to the frame or may be removable. The chair seat may also provide longitudinal adjustment to accommodate different users.

[0026] The resistance for the exercise bicycle may be provided by a resistance mechanism attached to the crank. The crank may be any suitable pedal crank, such as those found on typical bicycles. The resistance mechanism may be any mechanism that provides rotational resistance. The crank may be connected to the resistance mechanism by a belt, a chain, or any other suitable transfer device. In certain embodiments, the crank and resistance mechanism may be incorporated into a single unit. In such a mechanism, the resistance may be applied directly to the sprocket of the crank, thus, eliminating the need for a belt.

[0027] The pedals of the crank may be designed to promote efficient use. In one presently preferred embodiment, the pedals are standard flat bicycle pedals. In an alternative embodiment, the pedals may be a specialized clipless type to promote more efficient rotation of the crank.

[0028] An exercise bicycle in accordance with the present invention may have a shroud. The shroud may surround the crank, resistance mechanism, and frame cross-bar. The shroud design may provide styling for aesthetic appeal, while protecting the user from injury associated with the rotational units contained therein.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0029] The foregoing and other objects and features of the present invention will become more fully apparent from the following description and appended claims, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings. Understanding that these drawings depict only typical embodiments of the invention and are, therefore, not to be considered limiting of its scope, the invention will be described with additional specificity and detail through use of the accompanying drawings in which:

[0030]FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an exercise bicycle in accordance with the invention, arranged in the classical position;

[0031]FIG. 2 is a side elevation view of an exercise bike in accordance with the present invention, arranged in the classical position;

[0032]FIG. 3 is a perspective view of one embodiment of a post lock for maintaining the seat and handlebar posts in the classical position;

[0033]FIG. 4 is a side elevation view of an exercise bicycle in accordance with the present invention, arranged in a semi-recumbent position;

[0034]FIG. 5 is a side elevation view of one alternative embodiment of an exercise bicycle in accordance with the present invention in the classical position;

[0035]FIG. 6 is a side elevation view of an alternative embodiment of an exercise bicycle in accordance with the present invention in a semi-recumbent position;

[0036]FIG. 7 is a side elevation view of one embodiment or crank and resistance mechanism;

[0037]FIG. 8 is a side elevation view of an alternative embodiment of a crank and resistance mechanism;

[0038]FIG. 9 is a side elevation view of one presently preferred embodiment of an exercise bicycle in accordance with the present invention, arranged in the classical position; and

[0039]FIG. 10 is a side elevation view of one presently preferred embodiment of an exercise bicycle in the semi-recumbent position.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0040] It will be readily understood that the components of the present invention, as generally described and illustrated in the Figures herein, could be arranged and designed in a wide variety of different configurations. Thus, the following more detailed description of selected embodiments of a system and method in accordance with the present invention, as represented in FIGS. 1 through 10, is not intended to limit the scope of the invention, as claimed, but is merely representative of certain presently preferred embodiments for implementing the invention. The presently preferred embodiments will be best understood by reference to the Figures, wherein like parts are designated by like numerals throughout.

[0041] Referring to FIGS. 1-2, an exercise bicycle 10 may be configured to have a frame 12. The frame 12 may have longitudinal 11 c, lateral 11 b, and transverse 11 c directions, substantially orthogonal to one another. The frame 12 provides the necessary strength, support, and stability needed for effective operation of the exercise bicycle 10. The frame 12 may be constructed of metal, a metal alloy, plastic, a polymer, a reinforced polymer, a composite, or any other material with sufficient strength, durability, and rigidity.

[0042] A crank 14 may rotatably attach to the frame 12. The crank 14 may be characterized by a crank axis 15 and a radial direction 17, the crank 14 being connected to the frame 12 to rotate about the crank axis 15. The crank 14 provides a location for a user to provide force over a range of motion, thus, providing exercise. The crank 14 may be operably connected to a resistance mechanism 16. The resistance mechanism 16 may be a circumferential friction belt, an electromagnetic flywheel, a disk brake, a fluid dash pot, an air fan, or any other suitable rotational resistor. With suitable transfer mechanisms, the rotary motion may be converted to a reciprocating motion.

[0043] The frame 12 of the exercise bicycle 10 may be configured to have a longitudinally 11 a extending cross-bar 18 extending in a longitudinal direction. The cross-bar 18 may be configured to provide a “backbone” for the exercise bicycle 10. Legs 20 may be secured to the cross-bar 18 to provide transverse 11 c spacing of the cross-bar 18 from a supporting surface (e.g. floor). The legs 20 may be configured to have stabilizers 22 to provide a secure and stable platform from which the exercise bicycle 10 may be operated. The members 18, 20, and 22 of the frame 12 may be configured to have any convenient cross section, providing strength, rigidity, durability and other physical parameters.

[0044] A handlebar post 24 may be configured to extend substantially transversely 11 c from the crossbar 40. The handlebar post of FIG. 1 is illustrated as a round tube. In reality, the handlebar post 24 may have any convenient cross section (e.g. square, rectangular, oval, etc.).

[0045] The handlebar post 24 may secure to the crossbar 18. In certain embodiments, the handlebar post 24 may be pivotably connected to the crossbar 18 in order to rotate between a classical position and a semi-recumbent position. In one presently preferred embodiment, the handlebar post 24 attaches to the crossbar 18 through a bearing 26. The bearing 26 provides smooth rotation of the handlebar post 24 with respect to the crossbar 18 with minimum wear.

[0046] The handlebar post 24 may be configured to provide for adjustments in length. Such adjustment may allow the exercise bicycle to conform to a variety of users. In one presently preferred embodiment, the handlebar post 24 may have a base 28, an extension 30, and a stem 32. The base 28 may be configured to provide a housing for the bearing 26. The extension 30 may slide in and out of the base 28 to provide lengthening or shortening of the handlebar post 24. The extension 30 may be secured in relation to the base by a frictional, or other type of clamp. Alternatively, a member loaded in shear, such as a pin, may extend laterally through the base 28 and extension 30, or another simple locking device may be used.

[0047] The stem 32 may secure to the extension 30. Bicycle stems may serve well for the intended purposes of the present invention. The stem 32 provides a location for securing a handlebar 34. The handlebar 34 provides a structure for supporting the arms and upper body of a user while operating the exercise bicycle 10.

[0048] Many different handlebars and handlebar accessories may be implemented. These handlebars may include mountain bicycle handlebars, mountain bicycle handlebars with bar ends, drop handlebars, aerodynamic handlebars, touring handlebars, and the like. The handlebar 34 of the present invention may be configured to integrate any handlebar style that may be employed on conventional bicycles. The handlebar 34 may be configured to contain a console 36 or panel 36 presenting switches, dials, indicators, displays, controls and the like. The console 36 may be operably connected to the resistance mechanism 16 for adjusting the rotational resistance thereof. The console 36 may have a computation device for calculating calories consumed, equivalent miles traveled, resistance level, time of exercise, heart rate, or other desirable information.

[0049] If desired, the stem 32 and handlebar 34 may be configured in a manner not typical of current bicycle components. Different configurations may be used to provide additional comfort and utility for users with special physical needs and requirements.

[0050] A seat post 40 may be configured to extend from the crossbar 18 at an angle 41 with respect to the transverse axis 11 c. The angle 41 may correspond to the angle of the down-tube of typical bicycles with respect to the vertical axis. Similar to the handlebar post 24, the seat post 40 may have any suitable cross section for structure and convenience.

[0051] The seat post 40 may secure to the crossbar 18. In certain embodiments, the seat post 40 may be pivotably connected to the crossbar 18 in order to rotate between a classical position and a semi-recumbent position. In one presently preferred embodiment, the seat post 40 attaches to the crossbar 18 by a bearing 42. The bearing 42 provides smooth rotation of the seat post 40 with respect to the crossbar 18 while minimizing wear.

[0052] The seat post 40 may be adjustable in length. Such adjustment may allow the exercise bicycle to conform to a variety of users. In one presently preferred embodiment, the seat post 40 may have a base 44, an extension 46, and an adapter 48. The base 44 may be configured to provide a housing for the bearing 42. The extension 46 may telescope in and out of the base 44 to provide lengthening or shortening of the seat post 40. The extension 46 may be secured to the base 44 as discussed hereinabove.

[0053] The adaptor 48 may be secured to one end of the extension 46. The adaptor 48 may be configured to receive and secure a seat stem 50. The seat stem 50 in turn, provides a location for securing a bicycle seat 52. The seat stem 50 and bicycle seat 52 may be selected from any one of a number of bicycle seat stems and seats currently known. As discussed hereinbove, alternate configurations may be used to provide more comfort and utility for users with special physical needs, requirements, or desires.

[0054] In certain embodiments, a bar 54 may be configured to connect the handlebar post 24 to the seat post 40. In one presently preferred embodiment, the bar 54 is a two force member attaching to the handlebar post 24 at a pivot 56 and attaching to the seat post 40 at a pivot 58.

[0055] The handlebar post 24, the seat post 40, or both may be maintained in the classical position by a post lock 60. In one presently preferred embodiment, the post lock is secured to the base 44 of the seat post 40. The bar 54 may connect to the seat post 40 to rigidly maintain the handlebar post 24 in the proper position with respect to the seat post 40.

[0056] Referring to FIG. 3, the post lock 60 may have any configuration that allows for a rigid securement of the post 24, 40 in the classical position. In one presently preferred embodiment, the lock may have two outer flanges 62 attached to the base 44. A corresponding inner flange 64 may attach to the crossbar 18. An aperture (not shown) in the outer flanges 62 may admit a pin 66. The pin 66 may have a knob 67 secured to one end.

[0057] When the knob 67 is pulled, a spring 68 may compress and the pin 66 retract from the aperture in the outer flange 62 a. With the pin 66 retracted, the base 44 may pivot to the classical position. The knob 67 may then be released and the pin 66 may pass through the aperture 69 in the inner flange 64 and the aperture in the outer flange 62 b, thus locking the base 44 in position with respect to the crossbar 18. The lock may be released by retracting the pin 66 and pivoting the base 44. The post lock 60 may be embodied in other specific forms without departing from its essential characteristics.

[0058] Referring to FIG. 4, when the post lock 60 is released, the seat post 40 and the handlebar post 24 recline to the semi-recumbent position as illustrated. The seat 52 and stem 50 may be removed from the adapter 48. A chair-like seat 70 with a stem 71 may then be secured to the adapter 48. In one presently preferred embodiment, the chair 70 may be configured with a seat 72 for supporting the weight of a user and a back 74 for providing longitudinal 11 a support. The chair 70 may have stabilizing handlebars 76 for aiding a user in balancing himself/herself. Additionally, the stem 71, seat 72, and back 74 may tilt forward or backward about a lateral axis 11 b to provide a variety of seating positions.

[0059] In certain embodiments, as discussed hereinabove, the seat post 40 may be lengthened or shortened by the extension 46 telescoping in and out of the base 44. With the chair seat 70 installed, the seat post 40 may still be adjusted in a similar manner, thus, accommodating differently sized users.

[0060] Referring to FIGS. 5-6, the seat post 40 need not pivot to accomplish the objectives of the invention. In an alternative embodiment, the base 44 may rigidly secure to the crossbar 18. The extension 46 may be removed from the base 44, and the bar 54 may detach at the pivot 56. With the seat post 40 and bar 54 removed, the handlebar post 24 may pivot to provide the user with access to controls 36 and readouts 36 while operating the bicycle from the semi-recumbent position. A stop 3 8 may support the handlebar post 24 in the semi-recumbent position. If desired, the handlebar post 24, may lock in the semi-recumbent position.

[0061] In the alternate embodiment, the chair 70 may be configured with a base 77. The base 77 may comprise a longitudinally extending member 77 a and a transversely extending member 77 b. The longitudinally extending member 77 a may provide longitudinal adjustment of the chair 70, while the transversely extending member 77 b may provide transverse adjustment of the chair 70. The chair 70 may be configured to be removed from the frame 12. In an alternative embodiment, however, the chair 70 may be permanently secured to the frame 12.

[0062] Referring to FIGS. 7-8, the crank 14 may have an axle 78, a sprocket 80, crank arms 82, and pedals 84. In one presently preferred embodiment, the crossbar 18 may accommodate a typical bicycle crank axle 78. The crank arms 82 and pedals 84 may also be typical bicycle components. If desired, the pedals 84 may be clipless. Clipless pedals 84 allow a user to pull as well as push on a pedal 84, thus, allowing more muscles and muscle groups to be exercised.

[0063] The crank 14 may be configured to transfer rotation to the resistance mechanism 16 by a belt 86. The resistance mechanism 16 resists rotation of the belt 86, which resists rotation of the crank 14 and subsequently increases the load that must applied by the user to rotate the crank 14. The resistance mechanism 16 may include a sprocket 88 to engage the belt 86. A support structure 90 may secure the resistance mechanism 16 to the crossbar 18.

[0064] The sprockets 80, 88 may be configured in any manner suitable to transfer rotation therebetween. The sprockets 80, 88 may be replaced by gears that positively engage one another. In such an embodiment, the belt 86 may be eliminated. The sprockets 80, 88 may also engage a chain 86.

[0065] The resistance mechanism 16 may be any one of a variety of mechanisms. In certain embodiments the crank 14 and the resistance mechanism 16 may be incorporated into a single unit. In such an embodiment, the resistance mechanism 16 may apply a force to the sprocket 80 to resist rotation. The actuation of the resistive force may be applied axially by a caliper (similar to a disk brake) or circumferentially (similar to a drum brake).

[0066] Referring to FIGS. 9-10, an exercise bicycle 10 in accordance with the present invention may have post covers 92 and a shroud 94. The covers 92 and shroud 94 may be designed to provide aesthetic appeal as well as protect the user from the rotating crank 14 and resistance mechanism 16. Additionally, the shroud 96 may have an aperture 96 to allow a user access to the knob 67 of the post lock 60. The aperture 96 may have an arced configuration to allow for the motion of the knob 67 as the seat post 40 reclines.

[0067] From the above discussion, it will be appreciated that the present invention provides an exercise bicycle having both a classical and a semi-recumbent exercise positions. The exercise bicycle may be configured with typical bicycle components to provide an accurate classical position for simulation of outdoor cycling. Furthermore, the present invention provides an exercise bicycle that may shift from the classical position to the semi-recumbent with minimal user adjustment. Moreover, the invention to provides an exercise bicycle that may be fully adjustable in order to accommodate the stature of a variety of users.

[0068] The present invention may be embodied in other specific forms without departing from its spirit or essential characteristics. The described embodiments are to be considered in all respects only as illustrative, and not restrictive. The scope of the invention is, therefore, indicated by the appended claims, rather than by the foregoing description. All changes which come within the meaning and range of equivalency of the claims are to be embraced within their scope.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7172537Apr 24, 2003Feb 6, 2007Mohamed Bahaa El Din EisaGymnastic machine and methods for using it, for training and/or rehabilitation of the muscles and joints of the human body
US7481746 *Jul 21, 2006Jan 27, 2009Wingroup, S. CoopStatic pedalling fitness apparatus with lateral swinging
US7691033 *Apr 4, 2003Apr 6, 2010Engelbert RolliMethod for conducting a targeted training and a corresponding training device
US7942786Mar 18, 2010May 17, 2011Engelbert RolliTraining device for targeted training
US7963889 *Nov 7, 2006Jun 21, 2011Ziad BadarnehIndoor exercise cycle with tilt function
US8002347Mar 25, 2010Aug 23, 2011Geyer James BCycle seat with adjustable sides
US20110237397 *Sep 28, 2009Sep 29, 2011Peter MabeyStatic Cycling Machine
US20120295770 *May 17, 2011Nov 22, 2012Pai-Hua LoDual-Use Exercising Bike on which a User can Sit and Lie
EP2263760A1 *Jun 11, 2010Dec 22, 2010milon industries GmbHBicycle ergometer with multiple seats
EP2407216A2Aug 28, 2008Jan 18, 2012Wilson, Ian JohnErgometric training device
WO2003092822A1 *Apr 24, 2003Nov 13, 2003Mohamed Bahaa El Din EisaA gymnastic machine and methods for using it, for training and/or rehabilitation of the muscles and joints of the human body
Classifications
U.S. Classification482/57
International ClassificationA63B22/08, A63B21/008, A63B21/005, A63B21/02
Cooperative ClassificationA63B2022/0652, A63B2208/0233, A63B22/0605, A63B2208/0238
European ClassificationA63B22/08