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Publication numberUS3117782 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 14, 1964
Filing dateJan 15, 1962
Priority dateJan 15, 1962
Publication numberUS 3117782 A, US 3117782A, US-A-3117782, US3117782 A, US3117782A
InventorsLyman C Johnston
Original AssigneeLyman C Johnston
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Physical exercise apparatus including cables attachable at one end to the user's legs
US 3117782 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Jan. 14, 1964 I... c. JOHNSTON 3,117,782

PHYSICAL EXERCISE APPARATUS INCLUDING CABLES ATTACHABLE AT ONE END TO THE USERS LEGS Flled Jan 15 1962 m van/roe; LCJb/ms/on United States Patent C) PHYSECAL EXERCISE APPARATUS INCLUBENG CABLEd ATTACHAELE AT GNE END Ti) THE USERS LEGS Lyman C. Johnston, 118 Isabella St, Toronto, Ontario, Canada Filed Jan. 15, 1962, Ser. No. 166,282 1 Claim. (1. 272--81) This invention relates to physical exercise apparatus, particularly designed as a posture correcting structure for chronic spinal and postural problems of sedentary or occupational origin, an object begin to provide, in combination, an apparatus as aforesaid and means whereby the same can be employed, following simple adjustment, by users of all heights, and varying body-length between hips and shoulders.

A further object is to provide a device of the character herewithin described which includes, as an element thereof, a stanchion, standard or post, to which the essential pulleys may be connected.

A further object is to provide, in combination with apparatus of the kind herein described, means whereby the hand-graps may very conveniently be lodged in another portion of the apparatus when the user wishes to release his hold upon same for any reason.

A further object is to provide apparatus of the character herewithin described by means of which repetitions of the particular rythrnic exercise intended to be practised therewith, can be very conveniently counted as to repetitions of the exercise, and this visually, so that the user is not distracted by the necessity for sub-vocally counting while performing.

A further object is to provide, in combination with the apparatus herein set forth, means for adding to the weight, and consequent effort involved, and this by means which do not involve extra weight in the apparatus when packed for carrying, or necessitate substantial extra space, such weight being variable.

A further object is to provide, in combination with a device of the character herewithin described, a trestle or user-supporting frame together with the stanchion aforesaid, wherein the frame is elevated upon legs, whereby, the trestle may be employed Without the present apparatus, for other exercises or other purposes.

A further object is to provide, in a portable modification of the present invention, a packing and carrying box for the same which is so designed as to be capable of use as a positioning brace for the user.

With the foregoin objects in View, and such other objects as may become apparent as this specification proceeds, the present invention consists in the following con struction and arrangement of parts, all as hereinafter more particularly described, reference being had to the accompanying figures in which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective representation of the present invention including a body supporthxg frame and stanchion.

FIG. 2 is a fragmentary perspective representation of an elevated trestle table or frame and extension-piece.

FIG. 3 is a representation of the cable, means for adjusting the operative length of the cable-runs thereof, and associated handgrips and cables arranged schematically.

FIG. 4 is a detail depicting one of the special handgrips, in association with the cable-traverse assembly.

FIG. 5 is a representation of the visible and automatic counting means employed in association with this invention.

FIG. 6 is a perspective detail illustrating the variable Weight means employed.

FIG. 7 is a perspective representation of a modification of the present invention in portable form.

3,317,782 Patented Jan. 14, 1964 PEG. 8 is a fragmentary representation of the body portion of the carrying box for the embodiment of FIG. 7.

FIG. 9 is a detail illustrating, in side elevation the reverse angle-bracket which may be associated with the frame of FIG. 1, in the position of tilting the same upwardly at the foot end thereof.

FIG. 10 is an elevation similar to FIG. 9 of the same reversible angle-bracket but shown in the position thereof which is employed for preventing complete lowering of the legs, in other words, below the angle of elevation (about ten degrees) indicated at 57 in the accompany FIG. 1.

FIG. 11 is an enlarged fragmentary representation of the cable-traverse-and-looping assembly.

FIG. 12 is an enlarged representation of the means whereby the cables forming part of the present invention are prevented from tangling at the foot end of the apparatus.

In the drawings like characters of reference designate similar parts in the several figures.

Proceeding first to describe the embodiment of the present invention as mainly depicted in the accompanying FIGURES 1 through 6, it will be observed that the physical exercise apparatus collectively designated 1 is associated with and connected to a supporting structure collectively designated 2. This latter comprises a horizontal trestle or frame collectively designated 3 which, in the accompanying FIGURE 1, as resting upon a floor, simply comprises a pair of hollow tubular open-ended longitudinal side members 4 on which is secured as by rivets, a supporting panel 5. Secured to or loosely upon the panel 5 are cushions 6, 6a, and 6b.

In the accompanying FIGURE 2, trestle 3 is elevated above floor level by legs 7. These legs are comprised of two pairs, that is to say, a head-end pair 8, and a footend pair 9, each pair being connected by the transverse bracket 19. The supporting structure of the accompanying FIGURE 2 is preferably formed out of angulated tubing. Supporting structure 2 (FIG. 1) also includes the post of stanchion 11. This is formed of hairpin-bent tubing in the form of a pair of upwardly converging longitudinals 12 which also incline upwardly from the head end and of frame 4 at an obtuse angle thereto.

In the vicinity of the apex 13 of stanchion 11 a pair of pulleys 14 and 15 are connected. From the disposition aforesaid, it will be observed that these pulleys occupy a position above the supine user 16, and on a line forming an obtuse angle with the body axis of such user when said line and said axis are considered as joined in the vicinity of the users head.

The physical exercise apparatus per se is illustrated in the accompanying FIGURE 3 wherein the pulleys 14 and 15 are depicted schematically. From this FIGURE it will be observed that the apparatus comprises primarily the cable collectively designated 17 having secured at the ends thereof a pair of hand-grips collectively designated .18. The cable 17 is divided into what is herein designated for convenience of description as a pair of right and left side exercising cable-runs 19 and 2%, there being also a looped portion 21 between the stretches 21 and 23 of said cable-runs.

Portions 22 and 23 aforesaid are distinguished from the portions 24 and 25 of cable-runs 19 and 20 in virtue of the cable-traverse-and-looping assembly collectively desi nated as, which spans cable-runs 19 and 20. The assembly just named consists of a short-open-ended tube 27 and a ring 28 therein for looping the portion 21 through an aperture 23a in the tube 27, and through the ring 23, in the manner illustrated, so that a hook 29 may be engaged with the loop ends 3i). End 30, together with pulleys 14 and 15 aforesaid are herein described as 3 limiting and determining the operative length of cableruns 19 and 2%; and, by virtue of the cable-traverse-andlooping assembly together with the looping arrangements already referred to, such operative length may be varied in the manner which will now be described.

The portions 24 and 25 of the cable-run are threaded through tube 27 and intersect or cross as clearly illustrated in the accompanying FIGURES 3 and 4, Within said tube and within ring 28, to immerge as portions 22 and 23 respectively. These portions pass around hook 29 to form loop 21; and by virtue of such arrangements, it will be found that by holding hook 29 in one hand and grasping tube 27 with the other, the operative length of cable-runs 19 and 20, between 14-15 and 30, may be varied as the tube 27 is moved at right angles to its iongitudinal axis-in other words, to right or left with respect to the accompanying FIGURE 3. If the tube be moved to the right, the operative length will be increased. If it be moved to the left, the operative length will be lessened by virtue of the increase in the length of loop 21.

It is very necessary for the proper use of the apparatus herein described that the pulleys l3 and 14 be back of and beyond the users head to a substantial extent. This is because the proper use of the apparatus involves lifting the arm well back of the head. As a result however, if the hand-grips 13 are released, obviously the adjacent cable portion will fall into the vertical and the user will have to grope for same. Accordingly, novel hand-grips have been designed as depicted in the accompanying FIGURE 4 in which it will be seen that one side 31 is the longer and is provided with the pair of recesses 32 within the opposite surface-portions thereof. By the provision of such recesses, the portions 21 of the handgrips 18 may readily be pushed into tube 27 without binding inetliciently against the cable extending therethrough. The cable portion extending through the tube 27 engages within the recesses 32, and when so engaged, it will be apparent that the user may release his or her hold on the hand-grips without them falling into out-of-reach position as just mentioned.

Secured to tube 27 as by means of the semi-circular bracket 33 is a visible counter collectively designated 34. In the location 35 indicated is a number-reading aperture. To one side of the housing 36 is a weighted arm 37. Each time the legs of the user hit the door (or reach the end of their traveldownwardly) the arm jerks, causing the counter to move one digit. Thus the user is able at any time to observe the number of exercises performed when the legs are in the position depicted in full lines in the accompanying FIGURE 1.

In the performance of exercises with the present apparatus, harness collectively designated 38 secures both legs together by the ankles. The harness is connected to a hook 39. Cable 17 at end 3%) may be directly connected to this hook. In the accompanying FIGURE 6 however, there is depicted between hooks 29 and 39 a variable weight collectively designated 40. This takes the form of a rubber water container. Same may be of any desired shape. If formed of the discoid shape depicted and it is desired to preserve such shape, an iron r ng may either surround the container or be placed therewithin to prevent it from stretching out of the depicted shape.

In the accompanying FIGURES 7 and 8, there is illustrated a portable embodiment of the present apparatus. In such case, a door-knob 41, or the like, takes the place of stanchion 11. Pulleys 14 and 15 in this embodiment are held apart by a spacer 42 which may take the form of a tube similar to tube 27. Then cable portions 43 extend between tube 42 and door-knob 41 in the manner which will be clear from the accompanying FIGURE 7. In all other respects this apparatus is similar to What has already been described.

However, in the use of the portable form of apparatus, it is necessary to provide means for maintaining the user 4 at a correct distance below and in advance of the pulleys 14-15. This may therefore be accomplished by means of a novel carrying box collectively designated 44 and used as a brace for the shoulders of the user as also clearly depicted in the accompanying FIGURE 7. The box comprises a body portion 45 and a cover 46. The body portion consists of a floor 47 together with side and endi Walls and 49 respectively. The cover comprises a closure panel or lid 5i? and end panels 51 only. The panels may be angularly strengthened with respect to the closure panel by means of the battens 52 if desired.

Side walls 48 are somewhat deeper than end walls 49 of the body-portion 45. Thus recesses 53 exist between the ends of the side walls 45 where indicated. In three recesses fit the cut-back end panels 51 of the lid 50. By virtue of the corner stops 54, it will be apparent from a contemplation of the accompanying FIGURES 7 and 8, that lid 55 engages the body-portion 45 snugly, being locked against planer displacement, it being understood that the lid rests on the upper edges 54A of side walls 48.

Additional intermedially situated stops 5413 may be secured inside the body portion 45 as indicated according to the numbers of pairs desired. By means of these, the lid can be secured to the body-portion in various partially overlapping relationships such that when the lid and the body-portion are so related in the upside-down position of the accompanying FIG. 7, the overall length of the box/lid combination may be varied and a brace of adjustable length provided.

From the immediate foregoing, it will be apparent that box 45 and lid 50, when placed end to end and against a Wall 54C function in the manner of the headrest seen in the accompanying FIG. 1. Then by virtue of the adjustability, aforesaid cable adjusting assembly 26 can, if desired, be dispensed with.

In association with the elevated trestle of the accompanying FIGURE 2, it should be added that short tubular portions 55 are welded against the inner circumference of the ends of the longitudinal portions 3. These portions are intended to engage the horizontal, angulated, lower end portions 56 of stanchion 12 telescopically.

Reverting to the construction of the present invention, it is to be added that stanchion 11 may be adjustably po' sitioned within the tubular portions 55 as indicated in phantom lines at 61 of the accompanying FIGURE 1. This may be accomplished by transversely aperturing the lower horizontal portion of the stanchion to receive pins which will engage the apertures 62 of portions 55. Like wise, the convergent longitudinals 63 of stanchion 11 may be divided into upper and lower portions telescopically related whereby the stanchions may be effectively lengthened or shortened.

In addition to stanchions 11 being telescopically extensive vertically or horizontally as already described, the same may be jointed or hinged, either on the level of the trestle 3 or anywhere upon the length of the hairpin members, so that the stanchions may be set in a variety of different degrees of angulation. Such arrangements can be achieved by the provision of a sector-plate or quadrant arranged circumferentially with respect to the hinged point, in which case, the jointed portion of the stanchion could be rotated radially with respect to such quadrant or sector-plate and set at any desired degree of angulation by means of pins and registering apertures in the stanchion and the sector-plate. By such means, the stanchion-of FIGJ may also be folded down over the trestle when the device is not in use. The trestle may, if desired, be placed on castors for wheeling under a bed, for instance.

Additionally, there is shown in the accompanying FIG. 2, an adjustable extension-piece collectively designated 64 telescopically receivable within the sleeves 65 and similarly adjustable horizontally as I have just described with reference to stanchion 11 in the portions 55. A cushion 66 is preferably secured to the extension 64.

In the accompanying FIGURES 9 and 10 there is illus- .3 of the accompanying PEG. 1.

trated a reversible angle-bracket collectively designated 67, the same being of essentially the form of extensionpiece but with shorter legs 68 no cushion. it is designated to be telescopically receivable into the longitudinal side members fat the foot end of trestle or frame 1 the position or" FIG. 9, angle-bracket 6'7 may be employed for tilting the trestle, and exercising with the same in that position. In the accompanying PEG. the bracket is inserted reve'r ed. In such a position, with the trestle lying horizontal, it will be apparent that the usercannot lower his or her legs below the position indicated by numeral 57 in the accompanying FIG. 1, and this is to be desired in the proper performance of the exercises described.

A further invention concept within the compass of the present invention resides in the relation arrangement of the cushions on frame 3: For maximum therapeutic value connection with exercising with the cable apparatus herein described, the upper surface of the split head-rest 6 should be higher than that of intermediate cushion 6a. The upper surface of buttock cushion 65 should be higher than that or" cushion 6a, but lower than the upper surface of headrest e. Thus headrest 6 also acts as a brace (like box 45 in FIG. 7) and the disposition of the other two cushions help to keep the back flat.

In the accompanying FIG. 12 there is shown a short length of flexible plastic tubing 69 found to be most ethcacious for preventing tangling of the cables, at this location, which is otherwise a liability. This detail 69 simply consists or two short tubular portions 7%) and a eonnecting semi-tubular portion 71. The whole is formed of a piece of plastic tubing from which a rectangle is cut out in the area 72. Having now described the structure of the present apparatus, its mode of operation will be explained.

in all phases of exercise with the herein disclosed apparatus, the arms are kept straight at the elbows. The

basic position is that in which the legs are as shown at 57. Users who have any symptoms of low back trouble are advised to limit the motion of the legs from the position of 57 to 58. Gtherwise, the legs should be swung up to the full tip-position of 59. As an alternative to position 59, the legs may be moved from position 58 to the bent knee position so and then returned to position 57. However, the bent kn e position is not advised for those who have any low back complications.

The two positions (from 57 to 53 or 59; or, alternatively, from 57 through 55 to 643) should be performed at the rate of one second for each position or two seconds for the complete cycle. A smooth rythmical swing should be developed. The breath should be exhaled through th mouth during the upward movement of the legs. The breath should be exhaled through the nose while lowering the legs.

A daily regimen of exercise should commence at from ten to twenty complete movements until the abdominal muscles regain sufficient tone to overcome any stillness. This should be increased by ten each day until one hundred and fifty comrlete movements can be performed. After that, thirty movements per day should be added until three hundred per day has been reached. Eventual y three hundred complete double movements should be done in ten minutes on the basis of six periods of exercise per week.

The effective exercise with described apparatus will stimulate breathing and circulation. In addition, a teeing or" mental and physical alertness will be experienced. Preferably the daily workout should be performed in the morning. According to the physical condition of the user, pauses for rest may be taken during the course of the work-out.

Since various modifications can be made in the invention hereinbefore described, and as illustrated in the accompanying drawings, and numerous variations made thereto all within the spirit and scope of the invention Without departing from such spirit and scope, it is intended that the said description and drawings are to be interpreted as illustrated only, and not in a limiting sense, and that only such limitations should be placed upon my invention as are specifically contained in the definition thereof as expressed in the accompanying claim.

'What I claim as my invention is:

Physical exercise apparatus comprising the combination with a cable divided into right and left side exercising cable-runs, two horizontally co-axial and adjacent pulleys secured for rotation above the supine user and in a position on a line forming an obtuse angle with the longitudinal body-axis of said user when said line and sal axis are joined in the vicinity of the head of said use over each of which pulleys one of said cable-runs passes, an open-ended tube in which said runs intersect, a handgrip at each end of said cable, hand-grip retaining means embodying extensions on said grips provided with diametrically oppositely disposed elongated surface-recesses to facilitate insertion thereof into said tube without being intercepted by said cable-runs at the loci of entry into said tube, means for securing the corresponding opposite ends of both cable-runs to the legs of said user adjacent the angles, and means including said tube for varying the operative lengths of said cable-runs between said ends.

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U.S. Classification482/95, 482/142, 482/133
International ClassificationA63B23/035, A63B21/16, A63B21/00
Cooperative ClassificationA63B21/1645, A63B21/1654, A63B23/03575, A63B21/154, A63B2208/0252
European ClassificationA63B23/035G, A63B21/15F6