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Publication numberUS2863230 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 9, 1958
Filing dateMar 15, 1957
Priority dateMar 15, 1957
Publication numberUS 2863230 A, US 2863230A, US-A-2863230, US2863230 A, US2863230A
InventorsJoseph Cortina
Original AssigneeJoseph Cortina
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Cushioned sole and heel for shoes
US 2863230 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Dec. 9, 195s J. CQRTINA l 2,863,230

CUSHIONED SOLE AND HEEL FOR SHOES Filed March l5, 1957 JOSEPH CORTINA Dec. 9, 1958 J. CORTINA cUsEIoNED soLE AND HEEL FOR sHoEs 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed March 15, 1957 INVENTOR. JOSEPH CORTINA CUSHIONED SOLE AND HEEL FOR SHOES Joseph Cortina, New York, N. Y. Application March 15, 1957, Serial No. 646,328

3 Claims. (Cl. Sti- 29) This invention relates generally to footwear and, more particularly, to a shoe having means for cushioning the sole and heel of the foot of the wearer.

It is a principal object of the invention to provide a shoe with cushioning means for absorbing ordinary shocks encountered during wear of the shoe.

A further object of the invention is to provide a shoe with an inflated cushion yieldable on each step so as to cushion the foot.

A further object of the invention is to provide a shoe with an inflated cushion for the sole of the foot of the wearer and with cushioning means for the heel of the foot so as to provide a cushioning effect during running and walking.

A still further object is to provide a shoe with an inilated cushion for the sole of the fo-ot of the wearer and with a hemispherical, resilient element in the heel below the inllated cushion for cushioning the foot of the wearer.

Still another object of the invention is to provide a shoe with foot cushioning means that is comletely concealed when the shoe is worn, that is particularly adapted for use in heavy work shoes, and that reduces fatigue and gives comfort and relief to wearers who are on their feet for a considerable part of the workday.

A still further object is to provide a shoe with an inflated cushioning device having means for adjusting the pneumatic pressure so as to give the desired firmness to suit the needs of the individual wearer.

It is also further proposed to provide a shoe with cushioning means for the so-le and foot of the wearer that is relatively inexpensive to manufacture considering that cushioning is provided for the entire area of the foot.

For further comprehension of the invention, and of the objects and advantages thereof, reference will be had to the following description and accompanying drawings, and to the appended claims in which the various novel features of the invention are more particularly set forth.

In the accompanying drawings forming a material part of this disclosure:

Fig. l is a perspective view of a shoe made in accordance with the invention.

Fig 2 is a bottom plan view thereof.

Fig. 3 is a longitudinal sectional view thereof taken substantially on the plane of the line 3--3 of Fig. 2, parts being broken away.

Fig. 4 is a transverse sectional view taken on the of the line 4--4 of Fig. 3.

Fig. 5 is a horizontal sectional view taken on the plane of the line 5 5 of Fig. 3.

Fig. 6 is a transverse sectional view taken on the plane of the line 6-6 of Fig. 3.

Fig. 7 is an exploded perspective view showing the various components of the shoe.

Referring to Figs. l-7 of the drawings in detail, in the shoe shown therein reference numeral 10 designates an plane 'outer sole of comparatively thick material, such as leather j .e 2,863,230 Patented Dec. 9, 1958 or a suitable composition used in the manufacture of shoe soles. The sole has, of course, sufficient tiexibility to permit wearing of the shoe with comfort, and in effect is of the same general configuration and thickness as an ordinary outer sole.

However, in accordance with the present invention (see Fig. 7), there is formed in the heel portion of sole 10 a Ushaped slit 12, which generally parallels the correspondingly shaped edge of the heel portion. The slit 12 provides a tongue 14 bounded by the slit, and formed integrally with the material of the outer sole, said tongue flexing along a line 15 so as to, in elfect, be hinged upon the outer sole 1i) for swinging movement about an axis extending transversely of the outer sole.

A leather heel 35 includes a lower member 16 and an upper member 18, cemented or otherwise secured to the top surface of the lower member. Said members each has the outer configuration shown in Fig. 5, which is usual in shoe heel construction, and extending along the side and back edges of the upper member 1&8 is a rubber, edge-cushioning strip 2t) of channeled formation, said strip Ztl embraceably receiving the edge portion of the upper member 18. Strip 2t! may be cemented or otherwise fixedly secured to the upper member 18.

A part-spherical heel cushion 22 of sponge rubber or other soft, resilient material is Vcemented or otherwise securely engaged in registering openings 24, 26 of heel members 1S, 16, respectively, with the bottom portion of the cushion projecting downwardly below the bottom surface of the member 16 and the upper portion projecting above the top surface of member 18 a short distance. The top surface of cushion 22 is shallowly convex in an upward direction.

Referring to Figs. 2 and 3, secured to the underside of member le adjacent cushion 22 are downwardly convex cleats 28 of rubber or other resilient material, these being slightly less resilient than the cushion 22 and being adapted to engage the ground surface on each step, following compression of the cushion 22. There is, thus, a primary cushioning action afforded by the cushion 22, followed by a secondary cushioning action of less resiliency, produced by the cleats. A spacer 3i) of leather or composition material extends about the upwardly projecting portion of the cushion 22. The spacer 30 is in position overlying the edge-cushioning strip 20 as best shown in Fig. 6, and is cemented to the underside of the outer sole 1@ (see Fig. 7), rather than to the heel.

Between the forward ends of the side portions of the spacer 3d there extends a transverse spacer piece 32, cemented to the top surface of the member 18.

Also, and as best shown in Figs. 3, 5, 6 and 7, a holddown strip 3ft of rubber or other elastic material extends transversely of the heel, diametrically of the heel cushion 22, with its ends cemented under the side portions of the edge-cushioning strip 20.

The heel formed and as described above has been generally designated 35 in the several gures of the drawing. With the exception, of course, of the spacer 30 which is secured to the outer sole rather than to the heel, the heel may be preassembled as shown in Fig. 7, and then attached to the outer sole through the provision of nails 3'7 or equivalent fastening elements. If desired, the heel may be cemented to the outer sole in addition to being nailed. All this is well within the skill of those working in the art, and constitutes construction details that do not affect the carrying out of the actual invention.

As will be noted from Fig. 6, when the heel is secured to the outer side of the outer sole, the tongue 14 overlies and is substantially in contact with the hold-down strip 34 of the cushion. Thus, the tongue, on each step taken by the user, is adapted to dex upwardly above the plane ofthe sole, responsive to any compression of the cushion causing corresponding upward bulging of the top surface of the cushion. In a manner to be presently made apparent, the upward flexing of the tongue if, in turn results in1the tongue being movedV to a position exerting pressure against thel underside of an inflatable bladder 36, whichr` provides aV cushioning action over the entire length of the shoe.

The bladder 3o, as shown in Fig. 7, has an outer configuration corresponding to the outer configuration of die shoe itself, that is, of the outer sole lll? (see Fig. 2). The-bladder, however, has itsv periphery inset trom the periphery of the outer sole, as will be apparent by reference to Figs. 4 and 7.

Further, the bladder is so form-ed that along its side edge, the top andrbottorn portions or the bladt` r are'cernentcd directly together in iace-to-face contact as shown at 39 in Fig. 4. At the other side of the bladder, however, said portions are spaced apart, being connected by a side wall di.. The top and bottom portions or" the bladder are in face-to-face contact also at the toe end cfV the bladder with this Contact continuing along the outer side of the bladder for approximately half the length thereof, after which, along the outer side, the top and bottom portions of the bladder are spaced apart by a side wall arranged similarly tov and constituting an integral extension'or" the side wall dll, which extends for substantially the full length of the bladder' as shown in Pig. 7.

The bladder is coniined between the outer sole il@ and an inner sole 38, which is of a composition or leather material of relatively low exioility. inner sole 3d is secured at its periphery in any suitable manner to the shoe upper dil, which can be of any desired design or appearance. The design of the upper shown in Fig. l, purely by way of example, shows an upper designed for use as a work shoe or, perhaps, as a shoe for informal or rough wear.

The bladder 36 may also be provided with wide, side walls around its complete periphery, thus to facilitate the raising` of the inner sole 33 from the outer sole liti, by inflating the bladder to a desired air pressure.

This inflated shoe would Serve as an automatic balancing means for the wearer.

A highly important characteristic of the invention resides in the fact that the upper lil and the inner sole 3E, which receive and confine the foot, are spaced wholly out of contact with the outer sole lli and heel 35 by the bladder 36. ln other words, the upper fill and the sole are so arranged that there is a cushion of air over the full area of the shoe, afforded by the infiated bladder 3o. Thus, the foot is in actuality supported on air and hasv bodily upward and downward movements relative to the outer sole lill, with these movements being fully cushioned by compression of the air as necessary during th'e movement of the foot downwardly toward the outer sole.

A tiexible connection extends peripherally over the entire shoe, between the shoe upper and the outer sole. Said connection comprises a peripheral strip l2 of flexible leather or the like,tthe top edge of which is stitched. at 44 to the shoe upper, with the bottom edge being stitched at' d6 to the periphery of the outer sole itl.

Ornamental ties on the shoe upper (Fig. l) are secured at their lower ends to the upper by the stitchin 44, with the ties being interposed between the connectin strip and the upper do.

It is desirable to prevent chafing of the edge portion ofthe bladder, and to this end there is provided (Fig. 4) a rubber edging strip Stil extending peripherally of the shoe and secured to the underside of the connecting strip d2 by cement, and also by the stitching do. Strip Sti is also shown to good advantage in Fig. 7, and surrounds a cushioning strip 52 formed of cotton wadding or the like, also cemented to the underside of the connecting strip, and to the bottom surface of the inner sole 38.

i Strips 50, 52, engage the edge portion of the bladder, to prevent chang and wear of the bladder.

The bladder can be filled with air under pressure to any desired extent, and to this end, there is formed in the strip 52 an opening 54, at the heel end of the shoe (see Fig. 7). The opening continues through the connecting strip 42., and the registering openings receive a valve 56 extending from the bladder and provi-ded with a cap 58. The valve is a conventional vaiveV such as is used on automobile tire tubes or bicycle tires, and proiects exteriorly of the shoe a short distance as shown in Fig. l.

As will be apparent, one fills the bladder Sti with a selected amount of air to inflate the bladder, thus providing a cushion of air under pressure between the outer and inner soles, extending over substantially the full area of the shoe. As a result, when the shoe is worn, on each step there will be a downward pressure of the foot against the sole, which pressure is transmitted to and is cushionably resisted by the bladder 35. Thus, there is a cushioning action over substantially the full shoe area. The pressure exerted dow wardly by the heel of the foot is even greater than the toe pressure, during normal walking and as a result, after initial cushioning or the pressure by bladder 36 there is a further cushioning action by the soft rubber heel cushion 22, resulting from the fact that the tendency of the air to compress within the bladder 36, when the initial pressure is received, is transmitted to the tongue 14 which tends to flex downwardly.

Simultaneously with the downward liexure of tongue lid, there is an upward .pressure against the heel cushion exerted by the surface with which the shoe is in Contact. The eel cushionZZ compresses to absorb the pressures exerted thereagainstboth upwardly and downwardly, and tends to dex the tongue ld back to its normal position shown in Fig. 3. As the tongue i4 tends to now swing upwardly, the bladder exerts a further cushioning action, rcsiliently resisting theupward movement of the tongue.

Still further, when the heel cushion compresses inthe.

manner described, there is a tina] or auxiliary cushioning action afforded by the rubber cleats 23 in the manner previously described herein.

The net result is that the shoe provides a highly comfortable cushioning characteristic when worn, so that the constant shocks and pressures which are ordinarily sufered over a period of a day are in eect almost completely nullied by a novel combination of and coactive relationship between air and rubber cushions. Theentire upper of the shoe is insulatedfrom the outer sole by they air cushion aforded by bladder 35, so as to be capable of movement independently of the outer sole, the connecting strip llexing as necessary during such movement.

The shoe, of course, is usableto advantage not only by workmen who must be on their feet for long periods of time, but has general utility in footwear, iii-view of the fact that a very large number of persons suffer regularly from the considerable discomforts experienced as a result of confinement of the feet in hot, heavy shoes hav ing so little a cushioning action as to provide onlv a very small amount of relief from shocks encountered during normal walking or standing activities.

While I have illustrated and described. the preferred embodiment of my invention, it is to be understood that l do not limit myself to the precise constructions herein disclosed and that various changes and modifications may be made within the scope of the invention as donned in the appendedclaims.

Having thus described my invention, what I claim new, and desire to secure by United States Lett 5 Patent is:

l. A cushioned shoe comprising a shoe upper, an inner sole connected thereto, an outer sole underlying the inner sole, meansinterposedbetween the outer and inner soles providing an air cushion between the saine, a heel cn w assembly underlying and secured to the outer sole, and a exible connection between the outer and inner soles yielding responsive to compression of the air cushion resulting from movement of the outer sole toward the inner sole, said means comprising an inflatable bladder, said bladder having an outer configuration corresponding to the outer configuration of each of the outer and inner soles, the periphery of the bladder being offset inwardly from the periphery of the outer sole, said flexible connection comprising a strip extending through the full periphery of the shoe upper and connected at its opposite edges to the shoe upper and outer sole respectively,

the heel assembly including a compressible heel cushion` normally projecting downwardly for engagement against the supporting surface, the outer sole having a fiexible tongue overlying the heel cushion so as to be flexed upwardly into engagement with the bladder responsive to compression of the heel cushion, said heel assembly further including upper and lower, superposed heel members of comparatively rigid material, having registering openings receiving the heel cushion, the heel assembly additionally including an edge cushioning strip of resilient material extending about the edge of the upper heel member and having a channelled cross section so as to receive the edge of the upper heel member and 4cushion the same above and below the upper heel member.

2. A cushioned shoe comprising a shoe upper, an inner sole connected thereto, an outer sole underlying the inner sole, means interposed between the outer and inner soles providing an air cushion between vthe same, a heel assembly underlying and secured to the outer sole, and a flexible connection between the outer and inner soles yielding responsive to compression of the air cushion resulting from movement of the outer sole toward the inner sole, said means comprising an inflatable bladder, said bladder having an outer configuration corresponding to the outer configuration of each of the outer and inner soles, the periphery of the bladder being offset inwardly from the periphery of the outer sole, said flexible connection comprising a strip extending through the full periphery of the shoe upper and connected at its opposite edges to the shoe upper and outer sole respectively, the heel assembly including a compressible heel cushion normally projecting downwardly for engagement against the supporting surface, the outer sole having a flexible tongue overlying the heel cushion so as to be flexed upwardly into engagement with the bladder responsive to compression of the heel cushion, said heel assembly further including upper and lower, superposed heel members of comparatively rigid material, having registering openings receiving the heel cushion, the heel assembly additionally including an edge cushioning strip of resilient material extending about the edge of the upper heel member and having a channelled cross section so as to receive the edge of the upper heel member and cushion the same above and below the upper heel member, the heel assembly still further including a transverse, elastic strip overlying the heel cushion to yieldably exert a pressure against the heel cushion tending to force the same downwardly within e heel assembly.

` cushion to 3. A cushioned shoe comprising a shoe upper, an inner sole connected thereto, an outer sole underlying the inner sole, means interposed between the outer and inner soles providing an air cushion between the same, a heel assembly underlying and secured to the outer sole, and a flexible connection between the outer and inner soles yielding responsive to compression of the air cushion resulting from movement of the outer sole toward the inner sole, said means comprising an infiatable bladder, said bladder having an outer configuration corresponding to the outer configuration of each of the outer and inner soles, the periphery of the bladder being offset inwardly from the periphery of the outer sole, said liexible connection cornprising a strip extending through the full periphery of the shoe upper and connected at its opposite edges to the shoe upper and outer sole respectively, the heel assembly including a compressible heel cushion normally projecting downwardly for engagement against the `supporting surface, the outer sole having a flexible tongue overlying the heel cushion so as to be flexed upwardly into engagement with the bladder responsive to compression of the heel cushion, said heel assembly further including upper and lower, superposed heel members of comparatively rigid material, having registering openings receiving the heel cushion, the heel assembly additionally including an edge cushioning strip of resilient material extending about the edge of the upper heel member and having a channelled cross section so as to receive the edge of the upper heel member and cushion the same above and below the upper heel member, the heel assembly still further including a transverse, elastic strip overlying the heel yieldably exert a pressure against the heel cushion tending to force the same downwardly within the heel assembly, the outer sole including a U-shaped spacer at the heel portion thereof extending about said tongue and interposed between the outer sole and the upper heel member, said heel assembly including a transverse spacer in the plane of the first-named spacer and cooperating therewith in spacing the heel assembly from the outer sole, thus to provide Compression of the heel cushion in the space surrounded by the first-named and second-named spacers, for engagement of the heel cushion against the flexible tongue of the outer sole.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 206,267

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US206267 *Jul 23, 1878 Improvement in ventilating boots and shoes
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US1942883 *Aug 15, 1931Jan 9, 1934Adolf SchafferPneumatic shoe
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US2751692 *Nov 19, 1954Jun 26, 1956Joseph CortinaVentilated cushioned shoes
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3005272 *Jun 8, 1959Oct 24, 1961Frank MakaraPneumatic shoe sole
US4217705 *Jul 27, 1978Aug 19, 1980Donzis Byron ASelf-contained fluid pressure foot support device
US4237625 *Sep 18, 1978Dec 9, 1980Cole George SThrust producing shoe sole and heel
US4358902 *Apr 2, 1980Nov 16, 1982Cole George SThrust producing shoe sole and heel
US4546555 *Mar 21, 1983Oct 15, 1985Spademan Richard GeorgeShoe with shock absorbing and stabiizing means
US4577417 *Apr 27, 1984Mar 25, 1986Energaire CorporationSole-and-heel structure having premolded bulges
US5187883 *Aug 10, 1990Feb 23, 1993Richard PenneyInternal footwear construction with a replaceable heel cushion element
US5509938 *Jan 4, 1994Apr 23, 1996Phillips; Van L.Prosthetic foot incorporating adjustable bladder
US5753061 *Jun 5, 1995May 19, 1998Robert C. BogertMulti-celled cushion and method of its manufacture
US5916664 *Jun 24, 1996Jun 29, 1999Robert C. BogartElastomeric cushioning device used in footwear, helmets, tennis racquet handles, gloves, bicycle seats
US5987779 *Apr 17, 1996Nov 23, 1999Reebok International Ltd.Athletic shoe having inflatable bladder
US6026593 *Dec 5, 1997Feb 22, 2000New Balance Athletic Shoe, Inc.Shoe sole cushion
US6035553 *Apr 19, 1999Mar 14, 2000Mercier; LynnFootwear with integral bubble generator
US6253466May 24, 1999Jul 3, 2001New Balance Athletic Shoe, Inc.Shoe sloe cushion
US6745499 *May 24, 2002Jun 8, 2004Reebok International Ltd.Shoe sole having a resilient insert
US7010870Jul 1, 2003Mar 14, 2006Totes Isotoner CorporationTufted foam insole and tufted footwear
US7383648Feb 23, 2005Jun 10, 2008Reebok International Ltd.Inflatable support system for an article of footwear
US7448150Feb 28, 2005Nov 11, 2008Reebok International Ltd.Insert with variable cushioning and support and article of footwear containing same
US7600331May 19, 2008Oct 13, 2009Reebok International Ltd.Inflatable support system for an article of footwear
US7622014Jul 1, 2005Nov 24, 2009Reebok International Ltd.Method for manufacturing inflatable footwear or bladders for use in inflatable articles
US7681329 *May 30, 2007Mar 23, 2010Fu VictorVentilated footwear
US7694438Dec 13, 2006Apr 13, 2010Reebok International Ltd.Article of footwear having an adjustable ride
US7784196Dec 13, 2006Aug 31, 2010Reebok International Ltd.Article of footwear having an inflatable ground engaging surface
US7930839Oct 7, 2009Apr 26, 2011Reebok International Ltd.Inflatable support system for an article of footwear
US7934521Dec 20, 2006May 3, 2011Reebok International, Ltd.Configurable fluid transfer manifold for inflatable footwear
US8230874Oct 7, 2008Jul 31, 2012Reebok International LimitedConfigurable fluid transfer manifold for inflatable footwear
US8256141Apr 7, 2009Sep 4, 2012Reebok International LimitedArticle of footwear having an adjustable ride
US8414275Jan 11, 2007Apr 9, 2013Reebok International LimitedPump and valve combination for an article of footwear incorporating an inflatable bladder
US8540838Nov 23, 2009Sep 24, 2013Reebok International LimitedMethod for manufacturing inflatable footwear or bladders for use in inflatable articles
US8555526 *Apr 24, 2012Oct 15, 2013Alexander ElnekavehResilient shoe with pivoting sole
US8572786Oct 12, 2010Nov 5, 2013Reebok International LimitedMethod for manufacturing inflatable bladders for use in footwear and other articles of manufacture
US20120110871 *Jan 17, 2012May 10, 2012Alexander ElnekavehResilient Shoe With Pivoting Sole
US20120204442 *Apr 24, 2012Aug 16, 2012Alexander ElnekavehResilient shoe with pivoting sole
USRE34102 *May 14, 1991Oct 20, 1992Energaire CorporationThrust producing shoe sole and heel
Classifications
U.S. Classification36/29, 36/35.00R, 36/3.00B
International ClassificationA43B21/00, A43B21/28, A43B13/20, A43B13/18
Cooperative ClassificationA43B13/20, A43B21/28
European ClassificationA43B21/28, A43B13/20