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Publication numberUS3243901 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 5, 1966
Filing dateSep 5, 1963
Priority dateSep 5, 1963
Publication numberUS 3243901 A, US 3243901A, US-A-3243901, US3243901 A, US3243901A
InventorsGiacomo Clarizio
Original AssigneeScholl Mfg Co Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Athlete's foot protector
US 3243901 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

April 5, 1966 e. CLARIZIO ATHLE'IE'S FOOT PROTECTOR 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Sept. 5, 1963 INVENTOR.

-Qac omo C'Zmkzb BY M g'fiORNEYS April 5, 1966 G. CLARIZIO ATHLETES FOOT PROTECTOR 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Sept. 5-, 1965 INVENTOR.

(k ab BY ATTORNEYS United States Patent O Filed Sept; 5, 1963,'Ser. No. 306,764 Claims. (Cl; 3672) This invention relates to improvements in an athletes foot protector, and more particularly to asock-like protector highly desirable for use by an athlete within a track shoe, baseball shoe, or similar article of footwear particularly where the athlete is engaged in running as a means of protecting the foot against blisters, brusises, and similar injuries occasioned by the terrific pounding occurring during a foot race, although the invention will have other uses and purposes as will be apparent to one skilled in the art.

Track shoes of the type used particularly in foot races are built extremely light, with relatively thin soles and carry judiciously disposed spikes or calks on the soles. The calks must be of sufiicient length to penetrate into the ground, cinders, clay or Whatever substance comprises the track, sufiicient in diameter to withstand the pressure, and consequently pound and bruise the foot of the runner if no protector is utilized in the shoe. Blisters are frequently formed on the foot of the runner by virtue of the fact that the foot tends to slide forwardly in the track shoe whenever the spikes hold. The abuse of the foot is intensified when the track is'not completely uniform in texture, and one or more spikes of the shoe may easily penetrate while one or more spikes may contact a hard substance and not penetrate nearly as far as the others. While ordinary cushion insoles may benefit the sole of the foot and aid in protecting it from spike hammer and the like, it does not help the toes in any material degree,- particularly where the toes rub against the shoe upper. With many standard forms of insoles appearing on the open market, buckling and wrinkling in a most uncomfortable or'injurious manner will in all probability occur.

Heretofore various types of sock-like or slipperl-ike protectors have been devised for use in a track shoe or other athletic footwear. These formerly known devices, however, particularly in connection with foot race runners, failed to give adequate cushioning to the foot both beneath the plantar surface of afoot and above the toes of the foot; and also failed in most cases to sufliciently absorb moisture, and remain flat in the shoe without-buckling, wrinkling, gathering, opening up, or in some other fashion becoming askew to the discomfort-and possibly injury of the user. Many of these formerly known devices do not eliminate blistering' of the toes and the adverse effects of spike hammer on the sole of the foot. 7

With the foregoingin mind, it is an important object of the instant invention to provide a sock-like protector for an athletes foot, with or without a formation to receive the heel of the foot at the sides thereof, which is so constructed as to stay flat in the shoe and provide a cushioning action on both the plantar surface of the foot and above the toes of the foot. 7 i

Also an important object of this invention is the provision of an athletes foot protector sod'esi gned as to eliminate the adverse effects of spike'ha'mmer, and eliminate blistering of the toes, being made of a substancethat has-a gentle clingingaction which prevents any relative frictional movement between the foot and the device in a manner to injure the skin.

It is also an object of this invention to provide a foot protector of the kind set forth herein which embodies a foam cushioning substance disposed entirely beneath the plantar surface of the foot and also over the dorsal 3,243,901 Patented Apr. 5,' 1966 surface of the foot in the region of the toes to-provide adequate moisture adsorption and more than sufiicient cushioning eifect against abrasion of thefoot withthe shoe.

'Stillanatherobject of this invention is the provision of a foot protector highly desirable for use by athletes so constructed that during use it will not open up, gather, wrinkle, or become malformed in some similar fashion yetwill yield to all normal foot movements and effectively protectthe foot against the abuse suffered during foot race running.

It is a further object of this invention to provide a foot protector for. athletes which has a socket portion at the front end to receive the toes of the foot, a portion flatly underlyingt-he plantar surface of the foot, and portion to the rear which projects outside theshoe upper behind the heel and which aids materially in properly placing the-foot in the shoe with the protector thereon.

While some of the more salient features, characteristics andadvantages of the instant invention have been above pointed out, others will become apparent from the following disclosures, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIGURE 1 is a perspective view of a foot protector embodying principles of the instant invention, the outline of a foot being indicatedby dotted lines;

FIGURE 2 is a perspective View of an athletic shoewith the structure of FIGURE 1 shown in operative position therein;

FIGURE 3 an enlarged central vertical sectional view of the device itself taken substantially as indicated by the line IIIIII of FIGURE 1, looking in the direction of the arrows;

FIGURE 4 is a perspective view of a foot protector also embodyingprinciples of the instant invention, but of a slightly different construction, indicating in dotted lines the position of the rear portion of-the device when in an athletic shoe;

FIGURE 5 is a perspective view of a device embodying principles of the instant invention but of a still different shape;

FIGURE 6-is a greatly enlargedtransversevertical sectional view of any of the devicesof FIGURES l, 2, 3,.4 and 5 taken in alocation corresponding to-that indicated bythe line V IVI of FIGURE 4; and

FIGURE 7 is a transverse vertical sectional, view which may be taken in the samegeneral location as FIGURE 6 through a device embodying principles of. the instant invention, illustrating a slightly dilferent construction.

As shown on the drawings:

The first embodiment of the instant invention, seen in FIGURES 1-, 2- and I3 comprises a bottom member generally indicated by numeral 1, a tcecaporcovering gen erally indicated by numeral 2, and an upstanding heel receiving portion generally indicated by numeral -3. With reference to FIGURE 3, it will be noted-that eaeh one ofthe parts 1, 2 and 3 rnay be made of the samema terial if so desired. In the illustrated instance eachof these parts comprises a layer 4 of foam material having intercom-municating cells for ventilative' purposes as Well as moisture absorption. This foam may. he latex foam,- v'inyl'foam polyurethane foam,-or-the equivalent. Over the outer face octthe {foam is a-fabrie5 secured thereto in any suitable manner, such as by cementing or curing the foam to the -fabric, and-this material 5 may de sii'ably. Ibe a knitted :falbric, jersey fabric, or the equivalent. layer more than sufficient for the intended-usage, and

the-fabric is preferably. so-made that it is stretcha'ble in one direction only, v and in thecase of this protector the fabric is stretchable laterally of the device only. With There is'an inherent stretchability. in the foamonly a lateral stretch in the protector, the fabric prohibiting any longitudinal stretch of the foam, the device will not open up, gather, wrinkle, or otherwise become uncomfortably or injuriously distorted during usage.

The toecap 2 and the heel receiving portion 3 of the device may each be joined to the bottom member '1 by stitching 6, and this stitching is preferably an overcast stitch which during usage expands and lessens the bulk of the device in the region where the parts are joined together.

It should also be noted that the heel receiving part 3 of the device has an elongated rearwardly extending tongue 7 which may be grasped between the thumb and fingers at the time the foot with the device thereon is inserted in the shoe.

For added ventilation, the toecap 2 may be provided with numerous apertures 8 in the fabric or through both the fabric and the foam, if such is deemed desirable or necessary for any particular circumstances of use.

In FIGURE 2 I have illustrated the device in operative position in an athletes article of footwear such as a track shoe 9. It will he noted that the tongue portion '7 on the heel receiving part 3 projects without the shoe and it continues to do so during usage of the device. After putting the device itself upon the foot, the tongue portion 7 functions in the general manner of a shoehorn for placing the foot in the track shoe, and after usage this projecting tongue 7 frequently aids in removing the track shoe from the hot swollen foot.

The foam is in contact with the foot in all parts of the device, and this foam is preferably of a density such as to have a rapid recovery factor, being restored to initial thickness almost instantaneously upon removal of foot pressure. The foam provides a gentle clinging action against the foot and prevents any relative frictional movement between the foot and the protector such as would uncomfortably rub or abrade the skin. The foam also provides a cushioning effect to the device over the tops of the toes, the tips of the toes, the entire plantar surface of the foot and around the heel sufficient to aosorb most of the jar in running, and protect the foot against spike hammer, stone bruises, and the like. The upper of the shoe cannot blister the tops of the toes, the ends of the toes or the heel of the footby virtue of relative movement of the foot thereagainst. The device stays flatly against the inside of the shoe and does not open up, gather, wrinkle, or otherwise become uncomfortably distorted. Any relative movement between thefoot and shoe during running or otherwise using the shoe does not cause objectionable friction against the foot because it is absorbed entirely by the protector. Furthermore, the protector is extremely light in weight and does not add objectionably to the weight of the shoe.

As is well known in the art, foam of the character herein utilized can be varied in density during the manufacture thereof. It should be noted, therefore, that if the foam layer 4 in the bottom member 1 of the protector is made of relatively dense foam there will still be sufficient cushioning and protection of the foot, and the fabric on the outside thereof could be eliminated. In most cases, however, it is desirable to utilize the fabric to avoid any stretch longitudinally in the foam layer.

The form of the invention illustrated in FIGURE 4 comprises a flat bottom or base member 10 and a toecap 11, both of which may be made of the same laminated material as above described including an inner layer of foam '12 and an outer covering 13 of fabric stretchable in one direction only, namely laterally. These two parts may be secured together by overcast stitching as indicated at 14 in FIGURE 6. The toecap 2 may have nurnerous perforations 15 therein, if so desired.

In this instance, however, the base or bottom member 10 extends beyond the heel of the shoe, the termination point inside of the shoe being indicated by the dotted line 16 and beyond that line the base member 10 incorporates an extension or tongue 17. This turns upwardly along the rear of the shoe and extends outwardly over the top of the shoe in the same manner as the tongue 7 previously described, and functions for the same purpose. The device of FIGURE 4 is desirable for an athlcte who may not wish a heel receiving portion in the protector, but nevertheless desires the benefits of the projecting tongue.

In the event an athlete does not wish any heel receiving portion or rearwardly protruding tongue on the protector, he can use such a structure as is shown in F1"- UR'E 5. In this instance, there is a laminated bottom layer 18 that reaches just to the rear of the shoe, a toecap 19 with or without apertures 20 therein secured to the base member in the manner above described, and both the base member and toecap are of the same material as above described. In this instance there is nothing protruding out of the shoe during use of the protector and the heel may be naked within the shoe.

In FIGURE 7 I have indicated that the protector may be made of different materials if so desired. In this instance the base member generally indicated by numeral 21 and the toecap generally indicated by numeral 2;. are both shown as having an outer covering 23 of thermoplastic film such as vinyl or acetate film or the like, and an inner layer 24 of thermoplastic foam such as vinyl foam or polyurethane foam, or the equivalent. The parts then may be joined by a knife edge heat seal seam 25 which takes up very little room in a shoe.

From the foregoing, it is apparent that I have provided an economical, extremely lightweight, and durable foot protector highly desirable for use in athletic footwear such as track shoes. When the protector is in use, the foot of the athlete is cushioned and protected against abrasion, blisters, spike hammer, bruises and the like to an excellent extent.

It will be understood that modifications and variations may be effected without departing from the scope of the novel concepts of the present invention.

I claim as my invention:

1. In a foot protector for athletes,

a laminated structure comprising a fabric outer layer stretchable in one direction only,

a foam cushioning inner layer exposed to direct clinging contact with the foot whereby to avoid frictional movement relative to the foot,

said structure being shaped to define a heel receiving part,

a flat part devoid of sidewalls to underlie the plantar surface of the foot, and

a toecap to receive the toes of the foot.

2. In a foot protector for athletes,

a laminated structure comprising a fabric outer layer stretchable in one direction only,

a foam cushioning inner layer,

said structure being shaped to define a heel receiving .part, a fiat part devoid of sidewalls to underlie the plantar surface of the foot,

a toecap to receive the toes of the foot, and

a rearwardly extending tongue on said heel receiving part to project out of a shoe when the protector is in use.

3. In a foot protector for athletes,

a flat part devoid of sidewalls to underlie the plantar surface of a foot, and

a toecap attached to the forward end of said part to form a toe receiving pocket,

both said part and said. toecap comprising an outer cover of fabric stretchable only laterally, and an inner layer of. foam cushioning material having intercomamunic'ating cells and exposed to direct clinging contact with the foot whereby to avoid frictional movement relative to the foot. 4. In a lightweight foot protector for use Within a light athletic spiked shoe,

a that part devoid of sidewalls to underlie the plantar surface of the foot, and a toecap attached to the forward end of said part to receive the toes of the foot and protect the same over all sunfaces thereof, both said part and said toecap comprising a laminated material embodying an inner layer of foam cushioning material for contact with the foot of a user, and a thin outer cover in 'face-to-face connection with said inner layer and non-stretchable longitudinally of the protector. 5. In a lightweight foot protector for use within a light athletic spiked shoe,

a flat part devoid of sidewalls to underlie the complete plantar surface of the foot, an integral tapered extension on said flat part of a length suflicient to extend over the rear of the heel and out the top of the shoe when the device is in use, and a toecap attached to the forward end of said part to References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 520,417 5/1'894 Foss 36-10 1,436,463 11/ 1922 Silver 36-l0 2,344,773 3/1944 Herbert 36-10 2,394,844 2/1946 Cooper 3610 2,958,964 11/1960 A'bel 361O 2,995,838 8/1961 Servin 36-9 3,052,046 9/ 1962 Kramer 36-9 3,063,074 11/ 1962 Scholl 36-9 X FRANK J. COHEN, Primary Examiner.


Patent Citations
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US520417 *May 29, 1894 Inside shoe
US1436463 *Feb 5, 1921Nov 21, 1922Silver Myer SStocking protector
US2344773 *Mar 24, 1943Mar 21, 1944Theotiste N HerbertFoot covering
US2394844 *Aug 2, 1943Feb 12, 1946Barnett CooperStocking protector
US2958964 *Feb 3, 1958Nov 8, 1960Abel Ursula EFoot covering
US2995838 *Oct 19, 1960Aug 15, 1961Robert Hosiery Mills IncSlipper
US3052046 *Jan 6, 1961Sep 4, 1962Lewis KramerSlipper
US3063074 *Jan 20, 1960Nov 13, 1962Scholl William MFoot covering and method of making the same
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3530595 *Oct 7, 1968Sep 29, 1970Vogel Raimund WBoot and more particularly ski boot
US4021941 *Jun 22, 1976May 10, 1977Caggiano John JDisposable footwear
US4372057 *Jul 10, 1980Feb 8, 1983Olympia NielsenInsole
US5499459 *Oct 6, 1994Mar 19, 1996H. H. Brown Shoe Company, Inc.Footwear with replaceable, watertight bootie
US6170174 *Apr 20, 1998Jan 9, 2001Robert J. GessoShock absorbing liner for baseball shoe
US7685740 *Jul 13, 2006Mar 30, 2010Nike, Inc.Dance shoe
US7726044Jun 9, 2006Jun 1, 2010Kevin Levin GrayCushioning foot insert
US8146273Feb 17, 2010Apr 3, 2012Nike, Inc.Dance shoe
US8151490Feb 17, 2010Apr 10, 2012Nike, Inc.Dance shoe
US8607478Mar 1, 2012Dec 17, 2013Nike, Inc.Dance shoe
US20070283598 *Jun 9, 2006Dec 13, 2007Kevin Levin GrayCushioning foot insert
US20080010854 *Jul 13, 2006Jan 17, 2008Nike, Inc.Dance shoe
US20090025255 *Nov 22, 2005Jan 29, 2009Maria Antonietta FuscoPlantar wearable with open shoes
US20100139119 *Feb 17, 2010Jun 10, 2010Nike, Inc.Dance Shoe
US20100140931 *Feb 17, 2010Jun 10, 2010Petrotechnologies, Inc.Method of energizing a connector
US20100146818 *Feb 17, 2010Jun 17, 2010Nike, Inc.Dance Shoe
US20100325817 *Jul 30, 2008Dec 30, 2010Paul SiragusaWearable Shoe Tree
WO2007060499A1 *Nov 22, 2005May 31, 2007Neuroreflex Ltd.Plantar wearable with open shoes
U.S. Classification36/72.00R, 12/146.00M, 36/10, D24/189
International ClassificationA43B23/00, A43B17/14, A43B17/00, A43B17/16, A43B23/08, A43B5/00
Cooperative ClassificationA43B5/00, A43B17/16, A43B23/081, A43B17/14
European ClassificationA43B5/00, A43B23/08T, A43B17/14, A43B17/16