US 2520307 A
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Aug. 29, 1950 H. J. DORRANCE FOOT MASSAGING APPARATUS 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Aug. 31, 1948 R E 0C 1 T N N A W R R mo D Q L o R A 4 H NCE 50 H. .1. DORRA ATUS Aug. 29 FOOT MASSAGING APPAR 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Aug. 31, 1948 NVENTOR J D ORRANCE HAROLD Mm Patented Aug. 29, 1950 UNITED STATES 'ATENT OFFICE Claims.
This invention relates to apparatus for massaging the bottom of a foot for the purpose of stretching and loosening ligaments and adhesions, limbering the foot and exercising and strengthening the muscles which support the longitudinal and transverse skeletal arches of the foot. For such purposes, I have found that excellent results can be obtained by rolling a ball of resilient material back and forth while it is firmly pressed against the bottom of the foot, the fore part of the foot being yieldingly held down by an elastic band which passes over the forward transverse arch of the foot and. has its ends secured. The elastic band holds the foot in place on the apparatus without muscular effort on the part of the operator. Thus, the foot muscles can be entirely relaxed during the treatment. This relaxation is important in obtaining full benefit from a treatment. Apparatus for applying a ball to the bottom of a foot for a similar purpose but less effectively, is described in my Patent No. 2,030,358, granted February 11, 1936.
According to the present invention, an im proved and simplified mechanism is provided to move the ball in an arcuate path under the foot.v
For a more complete understanding of the invention, reference may be had to the following description thereof and to the drawing, of which- Figure 1 is a perspective view of a mechanism embodying the invention;
Figure 2 is a plan view of the same on a larger scale;
Figure 3 is a side elevation of the same with a a portion broken away to show in section; and
Figure 4 is a sectional view on the line 4--4 of Figure 3.
The device comprises a base In which, as shown in Figure 2, is of generally oval shape and large enough to receive a human foot of the largest size to be treated. An upright wall l2 rises from the base It), a, portion of this wall at one end of the base being of substantial height. Below the top of the higher portion of the wall iii a shelf or platform is is mounted within the contour of the base to support the heel of a foot to be treated by the apparatus, the wall itself serving as an abutment for the rear of the heel. If desired, a rib [6 may be provided beneath the platform I4 to strengthen it. The base may be pr0- vided with a pair of upstanding bosses to serve as bearings for a transverse shaft 22 which extends from one side of the base to the other about midway between the ends thereof. To hold the ill shaft against longitudinal displacement, a, pair of collars 24 may be secured thereto by set screws, or otherwise, within and adjacent to the bosses 28. A rocking frame is mounted on the shaft 22 to rock therewith. As shown, this rocking frame may include a horizontal member 25, which is secured to the shaft 22 by two posts 26, the member 25 being above and parallel with the shaft 22. The member 25 is longer than the shaft 22 so that its end portions 28 project out beyond the sides of the base l0. On each of the projecting end portions 28 of the horizontal frame member 24 is secured an upright stud 39. Each of these studs is adapted to receive an operating lever 32, the lower end of which has a bore adapted to fit over one or the other of the studs 30 so that the lever can be manually operated to rock the frame which is mounted on the rocking shaft 22. The operating lever 32 may be made in sections for convenience in packing, each section being a tubular member which telescopes for a short distance with the next member. A knob 34 is preferably mounted at the upper end of the lever for convenience of manipulation. While the manually operable structure shown is the simplest, the frame may be rocked by any motor-driven attachment suitable for the purpose.
Secured to the mid-portion of the frame member 25 is a U-shaped frame member 35 having two arms 36 which rise upward from the horizontal member 25. A ball 46 of resilient material, which is moderately deformable under pressure, such as soft vulcanized rubber, sponge rubber, or an equivalent, is carried by the arms 35 and is freely rotatable between them about an axis parallel with the axis of the shaft 22. For supporting purposes, the ball 40 may have a horizontal rod 42 extending diametrically therethrough, the end portions of the rod extending through suitable apertures in the upper ends of the arms 36. Cap nuts 44 and washers 46 may be employed to hold the ball in position between the arms 36. Metal flanges 48 may be mounted at opposite sides of the ball where the ends of the rod 42 emerge, these flanges being for the purpose of preventing the ball from bulging against the arms 36 when the ball is deformed and flattened by pressure against the bottom of a foot which is being treated.
An elastic band 55} is secured at its ends to the side walls i2. One of these walls may be slotted, as at 52, to permit adjustment of one end of the band 5% by means of a bolt and nut assembly E i which is employed to secure the band to the wall. The band 50 is located to pass over the fore part of the foot, upon the forward transverse arch, and to hold the foot stationary with the heel against the rear wall I! so that the muscles of the foot can be fully relaxed durin a treatment. As the ball is rolled forward under the foot, the fore part of the foot can yield upward, with increasing tension on the band, permitting the ball to reach a position well under the forward transverse arch. The resilient tension of the band on the fore portion of the foot thus cooperates with the upward pressure of the ball not only to flex the longitudinal arch of the foot but also particularly the forward transverse arch.
In using the device herein described, the forward part of the foot is thrust through the loop formed by the band 50 until the heel rests on the platform [4 and against the rear wall. Assuming that the band 50 is properly adjusted, the operating lever 32 is mounted on one of the studs 30 and the lever is rocked back and forth, causing the ball 40- to rollback and forth against the bottom of the foot. For convenience, when the right foot is being treated, the lever 32 will preferably be mounted on the stud 30 at the right-hand side of the device. When the left foot is being. treated, the lever can be easily shifted to the left-hand'stud' 30.
1. Adevice for treating afoot, comprising a base; an elevated platform at one end of said base to support the heel of a foot to be treated, an elastic band adjustably secured to said base and arranged to extend over the forward transverse arch of a foot on said platform, a freely rotatable ball of resilient material supported by said base and bodily movable through an arcuate path toward and from said platform, and means operable to move said ball back and forth inits path.
2. A device for treating a foot, comprising a base, an elevated platform supported by said base as a heel rest, a frame rockably mounted on said base to rock about atransverse horizontal axis below and spaced forward from said platform, aball of resilient material mounted on said frame and rotatable about an axle parallel to the rocking axis of the frame, and a lever'attached to-said' frame to rock the frame.
3. A device for treating a foot, comprising a base, upstanding elements on said base, a heelsupporting platform on one of saidupstanding elements, a horizontal rock shaft journalled in others of said elements and spaced forward from said platform, a frame mounted on said shaft to rock therewith, a ball of resilient material having a diametrical axle journalled in said frame and parallel to said shaft, whereby said ball is rotatable about the axis of its axle and is also movable in an arcuate path about the axis of said shaft, and an operating lever secured to said frame and operable to rock said frame.
4. A device fOr treating a foot, comprisin a base, an elevated platform mounted at one end of said base to support the heel of a foot to be treated, a frame mounted on said base forward of the platform and rockable about a transverse horizontal axis, a ball mounted on said frame and rotatable about an axis parallel to the rocking axis of the frame, a lever attached to the frame and operable to. rock it, and an elastic band adjustably secured to the sides of the base and adapted to pass over the forward transverse arch of a foot resting on said: platform and ball.
5. A device for treating a foot, comprising a base, an elevated platform supported at one end of said base to: receive the heel of a foot to be treated, a horizontal rock shaft journalled in said base below and. forward ofv said platform, a frame secured to said shaft to rock therewith, said frame including a horizontal member secured to said shaft and parallel therewith, the ends of said member projecting beyond the pcriphery of said base, an upright stud mounted on each projecting end portion of said frame member, a U-shaped bracket mounted on the mid-portion. of said frame member with its arms projecting upward, a ball of resilient material rotatably mounted between the ends of said arms, and an operating lever having a bore at its lower end adapted to fit upon either of said studs.
HAROLD J. DORRANCE.
REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 1,546,506 Naysmith July 21, 1925 2,030,358 Dorrance Feb. 11, 1936 2,045,814 Werler June 30, 1936 2285.958 Wheelock June 9, 1942