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Publication numberUS3511500 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 12, 1970
Filing dateApr 14, 1967
Priority dateApr 14, 1967
Publication numberUS 3511500 A, US 3511500A, US-A-3511500, US3511500 A, US3511500A
InventorsMichael J Dunn
Original AssigneeMichael J Dunn
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Constant resistance exercise device
US 3511500 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)


II. II ,I 30


MICHAEL J. DUNN BY M F ATTORNEYS 4 I 'CoNsTAN IRE$I$TA1CEEXERGISE DEVI E Filed'Ahril 1'4. 196? 5 Sheets-Sheet 5 INVENTOR. MICHAEL J. DUNN BY I l I ATTORNEYS May 12f,"1'9*io 5M 3,511,

. cons wir RESISTANCE-EXERCISE DEVICE Filed A ril, 1967 s sheets sheet 4 INVENTOR. MICHAEL J. DUNN ATTORNEYS May 12, 1970 M. J. DUNN CONSTANT RESISTANCE EXERCISE DEVICE l liled Abril "14. 1967 5 She ets-Sheet 5 M "I" H r42 28 -27 -w 30.. km

I 50 l l INVENTOR.


ATTORNEYS United States Patent 3,511,500 CONSTANT RESISTANCE EXERCISE DEVICE Michael J. Dunn, 1530 S. 74th East Ave., Tulsa, Okla. 74112 Filed Apr. 14, 1967, Ser. No. 630,967 Int. Cl. A63b 21/00 U.S. Cl. 272-79 6 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE An exercise device operable by hands or feet of the user. Force is applied by the user on pad members at the extremities of a beam which is mounted centrally on an oscillatable shaft. Linkage interconnects with the pad members to maintain them substantially horizontal in any position of the beam. Adjustable braking means are positioned on the shaft to provide variable frictional resistance to the oscillation of said shaft.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to exercising devices, and more particularly exercise devices of the type known as active devices.

Exercise devices of various types have been known for some time. One such exercising device is disclosed in British Pat. 735,319 and is of an active type operated by a persons foot against the tension of a set of springs. Other exercise devices are shown in: US. Pat. 1,553,418 relating to a see-saw structure having linkage elements therein for keeping the seats level; US. 1,978,264 relating to a see-saw having seat-leveling components and a braking device; and US. 2,777,439 relating to an oscillative exercise device which incorporates disc type braking components. None of these prior art devices provide the great beneficial effects to be gained from use of the device described herein.

Exercise devices are of two general types, active and passive. An active exercise device is one in which the user of the device provides the force to operate the device. A passive exercise device is one in which the force which operates the device is provided by the device itself and the user simply provides passive acceptance of the motion of the exercising apparatus. With a passive exercise device the person employing the apparatus presents a portion of his body to a moving component of the apparatus, such as by grasping a moving lever. The exercise device then moves the person's body portion in a prescribed manner.

With an active exercise device the person operating the device supplies the force to move a component of the device in a prescribed manner either with or without resistance from the device. A typical active exercise device might be one in which the person grasps a handle attached to a coil spring and applies a pulling force to the spring which is resisted by the tension of the spring.

The active exercise device of this invention provides for the exercise and development of numerous muscles of the body through operation of the device by the limbs against adjustable tension or braking means within the device arranged so that the device can be operated either without a resistive tension or with tension means adjustable over a wide range of braking resistance. The tension means incorporated within the device of this invention can be adjusted to provide a constant resistive torque rather than an increasing torque such as is inherent in a spring loaded exercise device.

The primary object of this invention is to provide an exercise device capable of providing muscular development for various portions of the body.

Another object of this invention is to provide an exercise device which is simple in construction, easy to use and inexpensive to manufacture.

Another object of this invention is to provide an exercise device which occupies only a small space while it is being used.

Another object of this invention is to provide an exercise device which may be operated by a person from a variety of body positions.

Further objects and advantages of the invention will become apparent from the following description and claims, and from the accompanying drawings, wherein:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an exercise device ac cording to this invention, showing it in use.

FIG. 2 is a side elevational view of an exercise device according to this invention.

FIG. 3 is a sectional view along the lines 33 of FIG. 2.

FIG. 4 is a front elevational view of an exercise device according to this invention.

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of an exercise device according to this invention.

FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional view of the braking components of an exercise device according to this invention.

FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional view along the lines 77 of FIG. 5.

FIG. 8 is a front elevational view of a component of the braking device of this invention.

FIG. 9 is a front elevational view of a friction disc component of the braking device of the invention.

FIG. 10 is a schematic view of an alternate embodiment.

An exercise device according to this invention comprises a support frame upon which a main shaft is bearably mounted. Upon the main shaft a beam member is secured, transversely of said shaft, and substantially balanced upon said main shaft so that the beam member may be moved oscillatively with respect to the support frame. The main shaft is mounted substantially horizonally on said support frame, and the beam member moves in a plane substantially normal to the support frame. A pad member is pivotally mounted near each end of the beam memberto receive thereon a part of the users body. Linkage means pivotally connect the pad members and beam member in order to keep the pad members essentially horizontal during oscillative movement. Adjustable braking means are mounted concentrically with the main shaft and have one of the braking components secured to the support frame and another braking component rotatable with the main shaft, and include means for providing a resistance to rotative movement of the main shaft relative to the support frame.

DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring now to the drawings in detail, FIG. 1 shows an exercise device according to this invention as it would be operated in one manner of use by a person treading upon the exercise device while pulling upon rope members to provide additional downward force. The exercise device, generally, 10 includes a base member 12 upon which the other components of the invention are positioned. FIGS. 2, 3 and 7 show more clearly the inner operational structures of the exercise device. In these figures is shown a shaft support structure 14 mounted on base 12. Shaft support member 14 includes a horizontal portion 16 which is secured to base member 12 by means of bolts 18 passing through openings 20. Adjacent a first side of horizontal portion 16 is a front upstanding member 22, and adjacent a second side of horizontal portion 16 is a rear upstanding member 24. Preferably for reduced cost of production shaft support 14 may be formed as an integral unit as by die casting. Shaft support 14 serves as a means for supporting in substantially balanceable position a beam component which is the basic operational part of the exercise device. Shaft support 14 bears a main shaft for supporting the balanceable rocking beam by the provision of an opening 26 and bearing 27 in front member 22 which is coaxial with an opening 28 and bearing 29 in rear member 24. Mounted bearably in openings 26 and 28 is a main shaft 30 which supports in substantially balanceable position a rocking beam 32 by means of an opening 34 through which main shaft 30 is inserted. Near each end of rocking beam 32 is an opening 36 and bearing 37 which receives bearably therethrough a shaft 38 to which is attached a bracket 40 secured to a pressure pad 42. Bracket 40 includes a front extension 44 which contains a passageway 46 therethrough which receives pivotally therein a pin 48 which mounts linkage arm 50 pivotally to front extension 44 of bracket 40. Linkage arm 50 has a central opening 52 through which passes pivotally a shaft 54. Shaft 54 passes through bearing 55 in opening 56 and bearing 57 in opening 58 in upstanding members 22 and 24. In this manner, as rocking beam 32 is moved oscillatively around main shaft 30, linkage arm 50 moves similarly around linkage arm shaft 54 so that the pivotal arrangement of brackets 40 with relationship to beam 32 and arm 50 will insure that pressure pads 42 are kept in a substantially horizontal position during the oscillative movement. As shown in the figures, a spring support member 60 is mounted on base member 12 and a coil spring 62 is attached thereto with the coil spring 62 having a rest member 64 secured to the end of the coil spring. Preferably, rest member 64 should include a resilient surface. Then, when beam member 32 is oscillated to its lowest rotative position an undersurface of beam member 32 will bear against rest member 64 to place coil spring 62 under tension so that a cushioning effect is achieved.

As the device as described thus far is placed into operation, it can be seen that the oscillative movement of beam 32 will take place with a minimum resistance to oscillation since the pivotal components are bearably mounted. Thus, to provide for operation of the device under resistive movement, adjustable braking means are included so that a chosen resistance to oscillative movement of beam 32 can be accomplished. The components of the braking means are shown in cross-sectional detail in FIG. 6, and a comparison of FIG. 6 with the other figures will indicate how this adjustable tensioning is accomplished. Main shaft 30 extends forward of the front member 22 in order to receive thereon the components of the tension means. Adjacent member 22 is a first flange 66 which has a bore 67 through which shaft 30 extends. Flange 66 is secured to shaft 30 by means of pin 68 which passes through bore 70 in flange 66 and bore 72 in shaft 30. Thus, flange 66 is made to oscillate with shaft 30. Other means of securing flange 66 to shaft 30 may be employed as are known to men skilled in the art. A series of discs are arranged over shaft 30 between first flange 66 and a second flange 74 which has a bore 76 therein through which shaft 30 is positioned. Positioned between flange 66 and flange 74 are a number of components which make up the preferred type of braking device employed with the exercise apparatus. A first set of braking discs 78 is positioned on shaft 30 by means of bore 80 which fits loosely over shaft 30. Pins 82 pass through bores 84 of flange 66, bores 86 of discs 78, and bores 88 of flange 74 to hold discs 78 in position. Thus, this first set of discs will oscillate with flanges 66 and 74, and consequently with shaft 30. Discs 92, which are identical in shape to discs 78, include a bore 96 which fits loosely over shaft 30. Discs 92 are held in fixed position with regard to shaft support 14 by the positioning on bosses 89 of pins 90 which protrude through an opening 94 in each disc 92. Thus, the second set of braking discs made up of a plurality of discs 92 is held stationary while the first set of braking discs made up of a plurality of discs 78 rotates oscillatively with shaft 30. Between each disc 78 and an adjacent disc 92 is a circular braking disc 98 as shown in FIG. 9 which has a bore 100 which fits loosely over shaft 30. Each disc 98 can rotate freely about shaft 30 between adjacent discs 78 and 92 subject only to the biasing tension which is applied to the braking component through adjustment of knob 102 on shaft 30. Bores and 96 of discs 78 and 92, and bores of discs 98 are relatively large so that the center of friction is as far as practical from the center of rotation. In this manner the resisting torque is greater for a given adjustment of knob 102. Discs 98 are preferably made of asbestos material to provide efiicient braking operation, negligible heat generation, and a minimum of wear of the braking components. Knob 102 has internal threads 104 which cooperate with threads 106 on shaft 30 so that knob 102 can be threadably adjusted on shaft 30 to provide adjustable tension against spring 108. Thus, as knob 102 is tightened against coil spring 108, the braking resistance is increased so that the force required to oscillate shaft 30 becomes greater.

OPERATION Operation of the exercise device of this invention is accomplished by alternate force applied to first one pressure pad 42 and then to the second pressure pad 42 to move each pressure pad alternately from its highest position to its lowest position. The exercise device may be used with resistance, that is, knob 102 may be turned on shaft 30 so that spring 108 is compressed against flange 74 to give an increased resistance against oscillative movement of the shaft 30. As shown in FIG. 1, the apparatus may include rope-like attachments to enable the operator to apply additional force against the pressure pads 42 so that he may derive further muscular development therefrom. The rope-like attachments include a handle grip 110 which has a bracket 112 around which one end of a rope member 114 can be knotted or attached by a conventional means, and a swivel snap member 116 attached to the other end of the rope, which snap member can be positioned through an eyebolt 118 secured to base member 12.

Treading can be performed either with or without braking resistance and either with or without the rope members. In treading without the ropes, the movement is similar to a running motion with the same muscles involved as when one runs. In standing upon the device in the manner shown in FIG. 1 and exercising without braking resistance, the exercise is basically an endurance exercise with a minimum of actual strength development. In treading on the exercise device against a braking resistance, the force is applied by extending the body at the hip and knee joints. The muscles primarily involved in this exercise are the knee extensors, hip extensors, and hip abductors.

By increasing the braking resistance further to a value at which the oscillative movement cannot be accomplished by the legs alone, the treading can be accomplished by the additional force applied through the use of the rope members. The ropes should be adjusted to a length which permits the performer to stand erect with his arms straight and with no slack in the ropes. In addition to the leg muscles previously mentioned above, a number of arm and body muscles are also developed.

In addition to operating the exercise device through various movements by pushing against pressure pads 42 with the feet, certain other exercises may be performed by pushing against pressure pads 42 with the hands. One such type of exercise is a straight arm pushup in which the person grasps a pressure pad 42 with each hand and pushes against each pressure pad with the upper body keeping the arms straight and twisting his body at his shoulders. A similar type of pushup is performed with the arms bent; then the elbows are extended alternately while the upper back is stabilized with no twisting. In each of these exercises the same muscles are used but in slightly different ways. Thus, the muscles used are the shoulder horizontal flexors, elbow extensors, abdominals, hip flexors, knee extensors, and plantor flexors. The distinction between the two types of pushups is that in a straight arm pushup the abdominals and shoulder muscels are contracted concentrically while the elbow extensors are contracted statically. In the bent arm pushups the elbow extensors are used concentrically while the abdominals are used statically and the hip, knee and ankle muscles are in static contraction to maintain the straight body alignment against gravity.

Another type of pushu-p which may be performed is.

known as the reverse pushup. In this routine the operator sits on the floor and places the exerciser behind him. He positions his hands on the foot pads behind him and raises his body a few inches off the floor so that his Weight is supported by his hands and heels. Pressure pads 42 are pushed with the hands, letting the elbows bend, and the arms are straightened alternately. The muscles used in this exercise are the elbow extensors, scapular abductors, shoulder abductors, spine extensors, and hip extensors. All these pushup exercises may be accomplished either with or without a braking resistance.

In addition to the embodiments described above, it is expected that various kinds of hand grips may be used in place of the foot pads so that the exercise device may be fastened to a Wall or ceiling, or to a frame member in either front or overhead position so that the operator may be in a standing position while using the device, either in front of him or overhead.

It is also contemplated that the adjustable resistance to movement of the rocking beam 32 can be provided by hydraulic piston and cylinder means 130 mounted pivotally between the rocking beam and the base member as schematically shown in FIG. 10. A master fluid cylinder 132 is contemplated which will provide a source of fluid to the compression cylinder of each piston device with resistance to movement of each piston provided by an adjustable valve 134 in the fluid lines.

Since many different embodiments of this invention may be made Without departing from the scope thereof, it is to be understood that the specific embodiments described in detail herein are not to be taken in a limiting sense, since the scope of the invention is defined by the appended claims.

What is claimed:

1. An exercising device for one person comprising:

a support frame,

a main shaft member bearably mounted in said support frame,

a beam member secured on said shaft member substantially balanceable for oscillative movement relative to said support frame,

a pressure pad pivotally mounted on said beam member near each extremity of said beam member to receive either the hands or feet of said person,

linkage means pivotally connected between each of said pressure pads and said support frame to keep said pressure pads in horizontal position relative to a vertical plane passing through the axis of said shaft during oscillative movement of said beam,

adjustable means positionable on said support frame to provide substantially constant torque resistance to rotative movement of said shaft relative to said support frame.

2. An exercising device as described in claim 1 wherein said adjustable means providing resistance to rotative movement of said shaft includes:

a plurality of first braking rings positionable on said main shaft and rotatable with said main shaft,

a plurality of second braking rings positionable between said first rings about said main shaft and connected together and fixed to said support frame,

means between said first and second braking rings to provide friction therebetween including a friction ring mounted about said main shaft so as to freely rotate, and

adjustable biasing means mounted on said main shaft to bias said second braking rings toward said first braking rings.

3. An exercise device as described in claim 2 wherein said adjustable biasing means includes a coil Spring mounted on said shaft adjacent said second braking ring and an adjusting knob threadably engaging said shaft adjacent said spring to bias said spring against said second braking ring.

4. An exercising device as described in claim 3 whereinsaid support frame includes a horizontal base upon which is positioned a coil spring cushioning member against which an end of said beam member strikes in its lowest rotative position.

5. An exercising device as described in claim 4 which includes hand grippab e rope members attachable at one end to said support frame to form tension members from said persons hands to said base.

6. The device of claim 1 wherein said adjustable means includes a hydraulic cylinder and piston interconnected between said support frame and said beam member on each side of said shaft,

a flow conduit and master fluid cylinder interconnecting with each of said cylinders, and

an adjustable valve in said flow conduit.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 87,465 3/ 1869 Butler 272-81 735,319 8/1903 Urwick. 2,253,996 8/1941 Bechman 272-57 2,398,122 4/ 1946 Souza 27254 FOREIGN PATENTS 1,253,188 12/ 1960 France.

5,763 1902 Great Britain. 14,092 1904 Great Britain. 148,953 1922 Great Britain.

DELBERT B. LOWE, Primary Examiner

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U.S. Classification482/113, 482/51, 482/118, 482/146
International ClassificationA63B22/16
Cooperative ClassificationA63B22/0056, A63B22/0058, A63B21/00069, A63B22/16, A63B2022/0053, A63B21/015, A63B2022/003, A63B22/0012
European ClassificationA63B22/00P6, A63B22/00P6B, A63B22/16, A63B21/015, A63B22/00A6S