US 3559986 A
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United States atent  lnventor Harry C. Ehrmantraut 541 Hawthorne Ave., Los Altos, Calif. 94022  Appl. No. 735,085  Filed June 6, 1968  Patented Feb. 2, 1971  ROLLABLY MOUNTED DOLLIES FOR LEG EXERCISES 1 Claim, 6 Drawing Figs.
 US. Cl 272/79, 272/70 ['51] Int. Cl ..A63b21/00, A63b 23/04  Field ofSearch 272/79, 80, 57(A), 57(8), 57(1), 70, 28
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 430,808 6/1890 Naish 272/57 3,421,760 l/1969 Freeman Assistant Examiner-William R. Browne Attorney-Elehr, Hohbach, Test, Albritton & Herbert ABSTRACT: A pair of dollies supported for rolling movement along one or two guideways permits a person to stand with a foot on each dolly and laterally separate the dollies in exercising the leg muscles. Each dolly carries a tread portion pivotally movable to positions disposed at an angle to the direction of separation of the dollies. A method of exercising the leg muscles while in a standing position with a foot on each dolly includes the steps of laterally spreading the two feet apart to permit the torso to settle toward the ground followed by laterally drawing the feet together to raise the weight of the lowered torso toward its initial position.
PATENTED FEB 2 I971 SHEET 1 [IF 2 INVENTOR. HARRY C EHRMANTRAU I ATTORNEYS PAIENIED FEB 219m 3559388 INVENTOR. HARRY C. EHRMANTRAUT MJW ATTORNEYS ROLLABLY MOUNTED DOLLIES FOR LEG EXERCISES BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention pertains to exercising apparatus for leg and hip muscles.
It has been observed that one part of the human body which is difficult to exercise properly is the upper thigh area of the leg. particularly the musculature of the inner and posterior sections. These portions are prone to the accumulation of fat deposits. both intramuscularly and subcutaneously.
The musculature of the region described above is most strongly exercised by motions wherein the legs drawn vigorously together from a laterally extended position. Heretofore, these motions have been pursued against the weight of wall pulleys and similar devices. However, there has been a need for a simple portable device which can be conveniently used in the home without the attendant paraphernalia heretofore employed.
SUMMARY OF INVENTION AND OBJECTS In general, there is provided a pair of laterally separable support platforms rollably disposed in one or two guideways serving to accommodate maximum separation of the feet of a person standing with a foot on each movable platform. The platforms each include a pivoted tread portion for the foot of the user to permit the tread portion to pivot about an upright axis. Accordingly, the feet of the user can be variously oriented with respect to the direction of movement of the support platforms.
It is a general object of the invention to provide an improved leg exerciser.
Other objects will become apparent from the following detailed description of the preferred embodiments when considered in conjunction with the drawings.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view showing an exercising apparatus, according to the invention;
FIG. 2 is a perspective view, showing an exercising apparatus, according to another embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 3 is a diagrammatic sequence of FIGS. representing the steps in the method, according to the invention;
FIG. 4 is a elevation section view in enlarged detail taken at lines 4-4 of FIG. 2; and
FIGS. 5 and 6 are plan views diagrammatically illustrating the positions ofa pair of dollies in each of two different operations respectively for the exerciser apparatus.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Guide track means. as shown in FIG. 1, comprises a pair of guide tracks 11, 12 of identical construction.
Each track II, 12, accordingly, includes a pair of laterally spaced guide rails 13, 14 adapted to support and guide the rollers 16 of a movable support carriage, or dolly 17, described further below.
Guide rails 13, 14 are held in spaced-apart parallel relation by means of the end spacer bars 18, 19 suitably secured thereto. Bars 18, 19 serve to define the limits of longitudinal movement of each dolly 17 whereby to permit the 2 feet of the user 21 to be spread apart to their maximum extent.
Each dolly 17 includes a foot tread member 22 adapted to support one foot of the user 21 standing thereon. Tread members 22 are movable about an axis 23, 24 to accommodate positioning of the users feet to point in the direction of the path of movement of dollies 17 or variously transversely thereto. Thus, a suitable pivot pin 27 serves to secure member 22 to the upper surface of a support carriage 26 whereby member 22 can be variously oriented about axis 23.
Preferably, the sliding interface between the upper surface of carriage 26 and the downwardly depending flanges 28 has modest antifriction or sliding characteristics whereby the user is required to exert continuing muscular control in maintaining the angular orientation of members 22 with respect to the path 29 of travel. Thus, plastic tubes 25 are retained in the grooves 30 for sliding on the upper surface of carriage 26. Fixed stops 31 limit pivotal movement of tread members 22.
Finally, it is to be noted that axes 23. 24 are disposed well to the side of members 22 and approximately 40 percent of the distance from one end 25a to the other, 25b, whereby the pivoting movement of members 22 further serves to dispose a side 30 of each member 22 closely adjacent the end of dolly 17 when each member 22 has been pivoted substantially normal to the path of dolly movement 29 so that the feet of the user can be brought quite closely together. Axes 23, 24 are, therefore, disposed at a point about one-quarter of the way across the width of members 22.
The length of each tread member causes the end portions 35 to extend substantially equally laterally beyond the width of tracks 11, 12. Members 22 extend equally to opposite sides of the longitudinal Centerline 40 of path 29. Thus, by providing the pivoting tread members 22, it is possible to employ a narrower support carriage 26 and narrower and less awkwardly handled portable tracks l1, 12, than where no tread members 22 are provided. That is to say, that if no members 22 were employed, it would be necessary to employ wider carriages 26 in order to permit the user to perform both styles of exercise described below, i.e., (I) wherein his feet are oriented transversely of path 29; and (2) wherein the uses feet are oriented in the direction of path 29.
Further, the disposition of the pivot axes 23, 24 permits tread members 22 to pivot to positions parallel to path 29 and disposing the width of the tread member 22 substantially equally on both sides of the longitudinal centerline 40, whereby the weight of the user may be evenly carried by wheels 16. Finally, the disposition of pivot axis 23 is a mirror image of the disposition of pivot axis 24 so that each dolly 17 can have the foregoing functions when both dollies 17 are employed together, as in FIGS. 5 and 6.
Each dolly 17 includes reinforcing ribs 32 extending lengthwise along the underside of carriage 26 to permit carriage 26 to be manufactured of relatively lightweight material and yet retain the desired rigidity. In addition to ribs 32, downwardly depending side portions 33 provide additional strengthening as well as the journal support function for each of rollers 16 mounted individually upon axles 34.
As thus arranged, the longitudinal displacement between adjacent dollies 17, as defined by the spacing between end bars 18, 19 serves to permit the user to extend his legs in opposite directions substantially the full extent of a relatively long walking stride whereby dollies 17 can be alternately advanced and retracted by muscular movement of the users legs.
By vigorously working the two dollies 17 between opposite ends of their respective tracks, the users leg muscles will be exercised.
Dollies 17 are readily removable and ride loosely in their guide tracks ll, 12 whereby both dollies 17 can be disposed in a single track 11 as shown in the embodiment of FIG. 2. The latter arrangement has been observed to be particularly effective in exercising the upper thigh area of the leg and particularly in the region of the musculature of the inner and posterior sections thereof.
Accordingly, a method of exercising such regions of the muscles of the legs while in a standing position as shown in FIG. 3 comprises the steps of standing with each foot upon an independently laterally movable support surface such as provided by tread members 22, followed by laterally spreading the two feet apart in a manner and to a sufficient degree to permit the torso of the rider to settle toward the ground. Thereafter, the rider laterally draws the feet together against the resistance of the weight of the lowered torso to raise the torso toward its initial position.
The foregoing steps have been outlined in the diagrammatic sequence shown in FIG. 3 commencing with the uppermost illustration and progressing downwardly.
supported dollies, each dollies adapted to receive one foot of a person standing thereon, guide means cooperating with said dollies for guiding the dollies, a tread supported on each of said dollies, said treads being pivotally mounted on the upper surfaces of the dollies, ribs and a tube along two parallel edges of each tread, the tubes of each tread slidably engaging the upper surface of the respective dollies, and stop means on the upper surface of each dolly to limit the pivotable movement of the tread.