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Publication numberUS2880721 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 7, 1959
Filing dateFeb 5, 1958
Priority dateFeb 5, 1958
Publication numberUS 2880721 A, US 2880721A, US-A-2880721, US2880721 A, US2880721A
InventorsLaurence E Corcoran
Original AssigneeLaurence E Corcoran
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Hand or foot carried pulsating massaging device
US 2880721 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

April 7, 1959 L. E. CORCORAN 2,

HAND OR FOOT CARRIED PULSATING MASSAGING DEVICE Filed Feb. 5, 1958 I I 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 Fig.1.

' INVENTOR. Laurenc flCorcoran I ATTORNEY April 1959 I L. E. (:bRcoRAN 2,880,721

HANDOR FOOT CARRIED PULSATING MASSAGING DEVICE I v 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Feb. 5, 195a v INVENTORJg ceE. Corcoran,

ATTQRNEY April 7, 1959 L. E. CORCORAN 2, 0,

HAND OR FOOT CARRIED PULSATING MASSAGING DEVICE Filed Feb. 5, 1958 5 Sheets-Sheet 3 INV EN TOR. Laumncafl Corcorczn,

ATTORNEY.

United States Patent HAND OR FOOT CARRIED PULSATING MASSAGING DEVICE Laurence E. Corcoran, Buffalo, N.Y.

Application February 5, 1958, Serial No. 713,373

9 Claims. (Cl. 12839) In my Patent No. 2,676,587, issued April 27, 1954, I disclosed a mask-like pulsating device for toning and reinvigorating facial muscles and tissues. This device is tautly secured upon the head to cover the malar regions of the face and includes connected plies of flexible imperivous plastic material such as Vinylite fashioned to provide sundry communicating cells which are connected as a series to a pulsator and by their rapid alternating distentions and collapse produce an efficient massaging action. While my patented device is efficient in the massaging of the malar regions its utility is limited to these regions whereas the massaging principles involved are beneficially applicable to other parts of the body.

My present invention is directed to a pulsating massaging device which includes cells subject to alternate distention and collapse, whihc utilizes the structural principles and operative scheme of the device of my Patent No. 2,676,587 and which may be fitted upon the extremities (hand or foot), thereby to enable the massaging of parts of the body for which my patented construction is not available.

As fitted upon either of the hands the device of the in vention, while in no sense intended or available for conventional hand massaging, enables a self-administered massaging action under the control of the hand which may be effectively applied not only to the malar regions of the face but also to regions which cannot be reached by my patented device, such as the neck, including the nape, the facial region below the mandibles, the shoulders, the general clavicle areas, the thighs and the calves. Since the device as an entirety is freely flexible the hand may be readily flexed to cause the device to follow the contours of the body part to which the massaging action is to be applied; the pressure with which the device is applied to the body part may be varied and regulated by the hand in accordance with the preference of the individual user; and the area which is massaged may substantially exceed the area of the device, the hand being moved to move the device over the entire area to be massaged.

The device is essentially the same structurally whether it be designed to be fitted upon the hand or the foot, the differences being merely in the general shape of the device for conformity to the extremity to which it is to be applied and the location of the cells.

As fitted upon the foot the device is used to massage the sole, the user occupying a chair and resting the foot to which the device is applied upon the floor with the sole of the foot bearing upon the cells, the device sustaining the weight of the foot and giving effective massage throughout the area of the sole. As thus used the device is a valuable item in the important field of the proper 'care of the feet.

It is well established that as individuals approach or pass beyond middle age there is not the degree of circulation in the calves and feet which is necessary for good muscle tone. The device of the invention as used upon the hand for massaging the calves or as used upon 2,880,721 Patented Apr. 7, 1959 "ice - the feet for massaging the soles, and as regularly so used,

promotes a beneficial degree of circulation calculated to give good muscle tone, thereby enabling the individual to take reasonably long walks without undue fatigue.

For carrying out the foregoing objects and schemes of use the invention consists generally in the combination of what may be called a massaging member, composed of overlying plies of flexible material impervious to air, preferably Vinylite, so fashioned and connected in air sealed relation as to provide cells distributed throughout the overall area of the massaging member and operatively related to one another and to a pulsator for response to its positive and negative impulses, the cells, by their resultant rapid alternating distention and collapse, producing an effective massaging action throughout the areas to which the device is applied and the plies being connected in air sealed relation along their margins and throughout all local areas between and beyond the cells, and a holder including a sheet of flexible material and one of the plies of the massaging member in marginally connected relation except at one end of the sheet, the line of connections being continuous and the holder and the ply to which it is connected providing a pocket open only at its inner end and enabling the device to be fitted upon the hand in the manner of a mitt or glove (according to preference) or upon the foot in the manner of a sandal. The sheet element of the holder is preferably composed of Vinylite although from a functional standpoint it may be composed of other materials, for example textile fabric, none of which, however, is as desirable as Vinylite. The cells may be arranged in various patterns, certain of which are shown herein as examples. As a matter of preference one of the cells, which may be called a marginal cell, extends continuously along the margin of the device and delimits a space which may be called a field within which the other cells, which may be called field cells, are arranged, these preferably including longitudinal and transverse series and being provided in a number substantially to occupy the field while at the same time having such mutual spacing that they may be independently fully distended (not withstanding the slight elasticity of Vinylite) for optimum massaging effect. The recommended air pressure for the distention of the cells is within a range of the order of one pound to three pounds p.s.i. The recommended number of pulsations per minute is within a general range of from twelve to twenty which, for the best results, may vary from five to three seconds.

In the drawings:

Figure 1 is a plan view of the device in the form of a mitt, looking at its active side, and showing a construction in which all of the cells are simultaneously distended or collapsed and which may be made in either of the forms shown in cross section in Figures 2 and 3.

Figure 2 is a transverse sectional view on the line 2-2 of Figure 1 showing a construction in which the inner ply of the massaging member is a relatively thick sheet of Vinylite.

Figure 3 is a transverse sectional view in the same plane as Figure 2 and showing a construction in which the inner ply of the massaging member is a relatively thin sheet of Vinylite.

Figure 4 is an end elevation of the form of device shown in Figure 1, viewing the device from the open end of the pocket.

Figure 5 is a plan view of an alternative construction also in the form of a mitt, looking at its active side, wherein the marginal cell and the field cells are simultaneously alternated in distention and collapse, that is to say when the marginal cell is distended the field cells are collapsed and vice versa. Either of the constructions shown in Figures-2 and 3 are available for use in this alternative form.

Figure 6 is a transverse sectional view on the line of Figure 5.

Figure 7 is a detail longitudinal sectional view on the, line 77 of Figure 5.

Figure 8 is an end elevation of the form of device shown in Figure 5, viewing the device from the open end of the pocket.

Figure 9 is a plan view of a modified construction. the modification consisting in forming the device as a glove, and the active side of the device being shown, the construction assuming that all of the cells are simultaneously distended or collapsed. Either of the constructions shown in. Figures 2 and 3. is available for use in this modification.

Figure 10 is a view of the modification shown in Figure. 9 in reverse plan.

Figure 11 is a plan elevation of the inner ply of the massaging member of the construction shown in Figure 9.

Figure 12 is a transverse sectional view on the line 12-12 of Figure 9.

Figure 13 is a vertical central longitudinal sectional view showing the device in a form for application to the foot.

Figure 14 is a plan view looking at the active surface of the device, the sheet which provides the pocket in which the foot is inserted being omitted for the sake of clarity of illustration.

Referring to Figures 1, 2 and 3:

The massaging member is composed of an outer relatively thin ply 1 and an inner ply 2, these being preferably of Vinylite, the ply 2 being so designated because it forms a wall of the pocket to be later described and the ply 1 being so designated because it is located externally of the pocket. In the construction shown in Figure 2 the ply 2 is relatively thick as compared with the ply 1, i.e., two or three times the thickness of the ply 1, whereas in the construction shown in Figure 3 the ply 2 is of the same thickness as the ply 1. The massaging member is characterized by cells generally designated as 4 which are distended and collapsed in response to the positive and negative impulses of the pulsating device which is preferably a motor driven pump constructed to effect delivery of air under pressure alternately with the exhaust of the air so delivered. Such pulsators are Well known in the industrial arts and may be purchased from industrial supply houses, their illustration therefore being unnecessary. During the delivery of the air the cells are distended and when the air is vented the air pressure upon the inner and outer faces of the walls of the cells is equalized and the cells are collapsed.

The outer ply 1 is fashioned by a molding operation to provide the outer walls of the cells 4 and a similar molding operation is preferably used in connection with the inner ply 2 to provide the complementary inner cell walls, the cells when distended having a generally elliptical cross section as shown in Figures 2 and 3. All areas of the plies 1 and 2 between and beyond the cells, including the longitudinal and outer transverse marginal areas are connected in air sealed relation by Welds, the weld forming heat being preferably directly applied to the outer ply 1.

One of the cells 4, distinguished as 4M, is a marginal cell which extends continuously along the marginal area of the massaging member and defines a field 5. The other cells which may be called field cells are distinguished as 4F, are arranged within the field 5, and are preferably provided in longitudinal and transverse series.

The pattern of the cell arrangement within the field 5 may, of course, be varied, the arrangement shown in Figure 1 being preferred when the device is in the form of a mitt. In this arrangement the longitudinal series in cludes three cells adjacent the inner end of the field 5' of the massaging member and the transverse series in -v eludes two cells adjacent the outer end ofthe field 5 of the massaging member. The marginal celldM has immediate communication by any suitably arranged tubular connection or connections with one or more of the field cells. As shown and preferred the tubular connections 7 extend from the transverse side 6 of the cell 4M severally to the three cells 4F of the longitudinal series, the side 6 also serving for the attachment of the tubular connection 8 which leads to the pulsator. The cells 4F of the longitudinal series severally communicate with the adjacent cell 5F of the transverse series by means of tubular connections 9 and the cells of the transverse series are in communication by means of a tubular connection iii. In the cell pattern shown in Figure 1 the cells 4F of the longitudinal series are adjacent the palm of the hand and the cells 4F of the transverse series are adjacent the fingers.

The holder by which the device is fitted upon the hand includes the inner ply 2 and a sheet of flexible material 11, preferably of Vinylite, which is shaped and proportioned to provide a hand receiving pocket 12, the marginal portion of the sheet 11 being continuously attached by Welding to the longitudinal and outer transverse margins of the massaging member.

In use the hand is fitted within the pocket 12 and, the pulsator being in operation, the device is applied to the areas to be massaged with such manual pressure as may be desired by the individual user. Because of its flexibility the hand may be readily flexed to cause the device to conform to the contours of the area to be massaged, the hand moving the device to any extent and in any direction necessary for the thoroughness of the massaging treatment.

In the construction shown in Figure 2 the cells, due to the increased thickness of the inner ply 2 and hence of its greater resistance to distortion under air pressure, have a greater degree of distention on the active side of the device than they do in the construction shown in Figure 3 and therefore, under distention, will somewhat more deeply depress the flesh in the area to be massaged, the selection between the constructions shown in Figures 2 and 3 being entirely a matter of personal preference.

The alternative construction shown in Figure 5 dilfers from the construction shown in Figure 1 in that the marginal cell 4M and the series of field cells 4F have separate connections 13 and 14 respectively to the pulsating pump, this being of any well known double acting construction which has separate connections to which the tubes 13 and 14 are respectively joined, the positive or negative (exhaust) impulses transmitted through one connection being accompanied by an opposite impulse transmitted through the other connection. In this alter& native construction the marginal cell 4M, instead of a continuous inner transverse side 6, has separate inner transverse side sections 6A in confronting relation to delimit an intermediate space 15 and the plies I and 2 are formed by a molding operation to provide a sleeve 16 which extends from the intermediate cell 4F of the longitudinal series through the space 15 and receives in tight fitting relation the end portion of the tube lid. The pattern arrangement of the field cells 4F is similar to that shown in Figure 1, the intermediate cell 4F of the longitudinal series being in communication by tubular connections 17 with the adjacent cells 4F and the series of longitudinal cells 4F being severally in communication by means of the tubular connections 9 with the adjacent cell 4F of the transverse series, the two cells of which are in communication by means of the tubular connection 10. In this construction when the marginal cell 4M is distended the field cells 4F are collapsed and vice versa.

In the modified construction shown in Figures 9 to 12 the device is formed as a glove. A sheet HA 'hich corresponds functionally to the pocket forming sheet 11 of the construction shown in Figures 1 and 2 and is preferably of Vinylite is fashioned to provide stalls 18 for the fingers and thumb, these stalls being separated by longitudinal slits 19 and independently flexible. The massaging member includes an inner ply 2A which corresponds functionally to the inner ply 2 and by means of longitudinal slits 20 is formed with independently flexible projections 21 corresponding to the fingers and thumb of the hand. The massaging member also includes an outer ply 1A which corresponds functionally to the outer ply 1 of the construction shown in Figures 1, 3 and 4 and by means of longitudinal slits 22 is formed with projections 23 corresponding to the fingers and thumb of the hand. The outer ply 1A is formed by a molding operation to provide the outer wall of the marginal cell 4M which defines a field 5A corresponding functionally to the field 5 of the construction shown in Figure 1 and to provide the outer walls of field cells 4F which substantially occupy the field 5A, the inner walls of the cells being provided by the ply 2A. The cell 4M includes the transverse side 6 and longitudinal sides which are continued along the two outermost projections 23. The field cells 4F include transverse cells which as a series are adjacent the inner transverse side 6 of the cell 4M and longitudinal cells which extend along corresponding intermediate projections 23. The series of transverse cells 4F are adjacent the palm of the hand and the series of longitudinal cells 4F are adjacent the fingers. The transverse cells are serially in communication by means of tubular connections 24, the cell 4F immediately adjacent the transverse side 6 of the cell 4M communicating with it by a tubular connection 25. The transverse cell 4F immediately adjacent the cells 4F of the longitudinal series communicates with them severally by tubular connections 26. The inner transverse side 6 of the cell 4M communicates with the pulsator by the tubular connection 8. It will be manifest that the glove form of construction shown in Figure 9 may be modified to accord with the scheme of operation shown in Figure 5 wherein the distention and collapse of the marginal cell are respectively simultaneous with the collapse and distention of the field cells.

In the foregoing constructions a single continuous marginal cell 4M is shown in accordance with preference. It will, of course, be understood that a multiple arrangement of serially communicating marginal cells may be used instead of the continuous marginal cell 4M, this modification being merely colorable and illustration thereof being deemed unnecessary.

In any of the hand carried forms of the device the recommended practice in the massaging action is a series of reciprocations of the device in longitudinal or transverse directions or a series of circular movements and, these local movements being maintained, the gradual shifting of the device over the entire area to be massaged. Such movements utilize an advantageous phase of the technique of hand massage. As to the areas in which massage may be beneficial it is recommended that the device he used daily for ten or fifteen minutes over a short period, e. g. two weeks, and that the massaging treatment be similarly continued from time to time in accordance with the need of the individual.

The device in a form applicable to the foot, and which is fitted upon the foot in the manner of a sandal, is shown in Figures 13 and 14 and is comparable structurally with the mitt form shown in Figure 1. In this foot-applicable form of the device the outer and inner plies are distinguished as 1B and 2B. Whereas in the construction shown in Figure l the cells 4M and 4F are distended outward relatively to the inner ply in the construction shown in Figures 13 and 14 the cells are distended inward relatively to the inner ply. This form of device includes a sheet 113 which corresponds functionally to the sheet 11 of the construction shown in Figure 1 and cooperates with the ply 2B in forming a pocket 12B for the accommodation of the foot; the sheet 11B being shaped to overlie the metatarsal and instep area of the foot. Whereas in the form shown in Figures 1, 5 and 9 the cells are distended from the outer side of the pocket, in the form shown in Figures 13 and 14 the cells are distended from the inner side of the pocket. As in the constructions previously described this form of device includes a marginal cell 4M (of U-shape) which defines a field 5B and field cells 4F which substantially occupy the field 5B, the cells 4F being transversely arranged. In Figure 13 the foot is shown in broken lines and the distension of the cells is assumed. The cells 4M and 4F occupy an area which extends from the toes to the heel, that is to say in use they are located under the toes, the sole and the arch of the foot. The cell 4M is in communication with the pulsator by a tubular connection 83 laterally directed from one of its longitudinal sides at a point under the arch of the foot, and is in communication with the several cells 4F by transverse tubular connections 27. The outer ply 1B is of a length to extend under the entire foot including the heel.

In the use of the device in the form shown inFigures l3 and 14 the foot is fitted in the pocket 12B with the toes, sole and arch bearing upon the cells, the ply 2B bearing upon the floor and the massaging member taking the weight of the foot.

I claim:

1. A pulsating massaging device to be fitted upon a limb extremity of the body comprising, in combination: a massaging member composed of inner and outer plies of flexible material impervious to air, the plies being in mutually overlying relation and being formed to provide a plurality of cells distributed throughout the overall area of the massaging member and subject to distention by air delivered into them under pressure and to collapse upon the exhaust of such air, the plies providing the inner and outer walls of the cells and being connected in air sealed relation along their margin and throughout all local areas between and beyond the cells, a sheet having a marginally connected relation, except at one end thereof, to the marginal portions of the inner ply, the sheet being shaped and proportioned for cooperation with the inner ply to provide a pocket open only at one end, the sheet conforming to the outline and dimensions of the limb extremity and the pocket enabling the device to be fitted upon and carried by the limb extremity and serving for its reception, the massaging member including air sealed means of serial communication between certain of the cells, and tubular means having air sealed connection to the massaging member for delivering air under pressure to the cells and for venting the air so delivered.

2. A pulsating massaging device as set forth in claim 1 wherein one of the cells extends along the margins of the massaging member and defines a field and the other cells are arranged within and substantially occupy the field, the cells within the field being those which have the air sealed means of serial communication.

3. A pulsating massaging device as set forth in claim 1 wherein one of the cells extends along the margins of the massaging member and defines a field and the other cells are arranged within and substantially occupy the field, the cells within the field being arranged in longitudinal and transverse series and being the cells which have the air sealed means of serial communication.

4. A pulsating massaging device as set forth in claim 1 wherein one of the cells extends uninterruptedly along the margins of the massaging member and defines a field and the other cells are arranged Within and substantially occupy the field, the marginally arranged cell being the cell to which the tubular means is connected and having provision for the delivery of air under pressure to the cells of the field and for the venting of the air so delivered in connection with the venting of the air delivered to the marginal cell.

5. A pulsating massaging device as set forth in claim 1 wherein one of the cells extends along the margins of the massaging member and defines afield and the' other cells are arranged within the field, the cells within the field being those which have the air sealed means of serial communication, and wherein the marginally extending cell has an interruption which defines a space and one of the cells of the field is formed in air sealed relation with a sleeve which extends through the space, the tubular means including a tubular connection connected to the marginal cell and a second tubular connection having its end portion closely fitted Within the sleeve.

6. A pulsating massaging device as set forth in claim l wherein the limb extremity upon which the device is to be fitted is a hand and the sheet is shaped and dimensioned to conform to the shape and dimensions of the hand, thereby to enable the device to be fitted upon the hand as a carrier for the device, the cells being distended outward relatively to the inner ply and to the outer side of the pocket to enable their massaging appli cation to any areas of the body in accordance with the movements of the hand.

7. A pulsating massaging device as set forth in claim 6 wherein the pocket is so formed as to enable the application of the device to the hand in the manner of a mitt.

8. A pulsating massaging device as set forth in claim 2 wherein the limb extremity upon which the device is to be fitted is a hand, the sheet is shaped and dimensioned to conform to the shape and dimensions of the hand and includes stalls for the fingers and thumb separated by slitting and independently flexible, the inner ply is formed with slits to provide independently flexible projections corresponding to the stalls, the marginal portions of the S stalls being attached to the marginal portions of the projections, and the outer ply is formed with slits with pro: jections corresponding to the fingers and thumb of the hand, the marginal portions of the projections of the outer ply being secured in air sealed relation to the marginal portions of the projections of the inner ply, the marginal cell extending alon the margins of the outer ply and being continued along the two outermost projections of,

able their massaging application to any areas. of the body in accordance with the movements. of-the hand.

9. A pulsating massaging device as setforth in claim 1 wherein the limb extremity upon which the device is to,

be fitted is a foot and the sheetis shaped and dimensionedto conform to the metatarsal and instep portions of the foot, thereby to enable the device to be fitted upon the 1 foot as a sandal, the cells being distended inward relai tively to the inner ply and to the inner side of the pocket and bearing with massaging efiect upOn the sole and ad jacent areas of the foot.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS Wood Nov. 1, 1932 Corcoran Apr. 27, 1954

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Classifications
U.S. Classification601/151, 128/DIG.200
International ClassificationA61H23/04
Cooperative ClassificationA61H9/0078, A61H2205/12, Y10S128/20, A61H2205/065
European ClassificationA61H9/00P6