US 3612521 A
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United States Patent 1,472,906 11/1923 Gorrell J. D. Wendeborn 640 Allende, Laredo, Tex. 78040 832,347
June 11, 1969 Oct. 12, 1971 Inventor Appl. No. Filed Patented FINGER EXERCISING APPLIANCE 3 Claims, 4 Drawing Figs.
U.S. Cl 272/67, 272/80, 272/82 Int. Cl A63b 21/30 Field of Search 272/67, 68, 80; 273/54 B References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,103,213 9/1963 Robinson Primary Examiner-Richard C. Pinkham Assistant Examiner-Richard Dror Attorneys-Clarence A OBrien and Harvey B. Jacobson ABSTRACT: A physical therapy appliance designed and structurally adapted to be removably harnessed on a wearer's hand in a manner to enable the thumb and fingers to perform movements of extension and abduction simultaneously. It comprises a plurality of individual loops which are comformable with and adapted to comfortably but retentively encircle base portions only of the thumb and fingers of the selected hand. It also embodies connecting means integrally joined with and operatively linking like end portions of the loops together.
PATENTEDBBI 12 IBYI JD (la) Wendebom INVIL N I OK.
FINGER EXERCISING APPLIANCE This invention relates to certain new and useful improvements in hand and finger exercising devices nd appliances and has to do, more particularly, with an innovation which is such in construction and capability that it lends itself to use in the field of physical therapy, is readily applicable and removable, and achieves the end results desired by straightening and opening and closing the fingers.
The adaption herein disclosed has been perfected with a view toward enabling the digits of the wearers hand to efficaciously perform the contemplated movements of extension and abduction simultaneously. It will fit either the right hand or left hand and, therefore, obviates the need for distinct embodiments for each hand. Made of a predetermined grade and kind of moldable rubber or rubberlike material it can be wholly immersed in water and can in fact be acceptably utilize in a therapeutic setting for hydrotherapy where, for instance, the appliance-equipped hand is called upon to resort to exercising under water. It is compact and convenient in size and lends itself to placement in a carrying purse or in a garment pocket. It is strong and durable and can withstand repeated and long use and is not subject to damage by bending, twisting or dripping. The manner of use is of the utmost in simplicity in that the wearer does not have to cope with or resort to the use of confusing fastening means, does not have to other with adjustments during use and need not have special knowledge to achieve satisfactory results.
in fact and to the ends desired the wearer simply places the five digit loops around the base of each finger and thumb and straightens the same whileat the same time he spreads them apart as far as necessary for effectiveness. It follows that the disclosed appliance can be worn for exercising while the wearer carries out customary activities. Accordingly, a basketball player, swimmer or a housewife, for example, can apply and safely wear the appliance and go right ahead with duties and without encountering undue restraint or encumbering difficulties.
it is within the purview of the inventive concept toprovide appliances of varying sizes and perfected elastic resistance applicable to the hands of children and adults and in compliance with prescribed degrees of resistance and in keeping with the requirements of the exercises recommended by a physical therapist or a knowledgeable trainer, as the case may be. Sizes commonly used are made for children and more particularly for adults such as; small, medium or large. Each size could be produced in three degrees of elastic resistance, for example minimal resistance (white), medium resistance (blue), and maximum resistance (red).
Briefly, the appliance is made of one piece of molded rubber or suitably elastic rubberlike material and is such in capability that it can be removably harnessed on the users hand, without undue restraint, in a manner to permit the thumb and fingers of the hand to perform movements of extension and abduction simultaneously and coincidental with normal neuromuscular actions of that hand. It is characterized by a plurality of individual loops of suitable elasticity which are conformable with and adapted to comfortably but retentatively encircle the base portions only of the thumb and fingers of a selected hand. These loops have like or corresponding end portions integrally joined with a prescribed peripheral surface of normally retracted but stretch responsive connecting means. The connecting means, more particularly, comprises a simple stress and strain responsive member which when not in use is in relaxed ringlike form. To the ends desired this connecting means or member is permissibly extensible and retractable in response to he opening and closing movements of the thumb and fingers of the wearer's hand.
These together with other objects and advantages which will become subsequently apparent reside in the details of construction and operation as more fully hereinafter described and claimed, reference being had to the accompanying drawings forming a part hereof wherein like numerals refer to like parts throughout, and in which: FIG. 1 is a view in perspective of a finger exercising appliance constructed in accordance with the principles of the invention and showing the component parts in a normal or retracted state. FIG. 2 is a section taken approximately on the plane of the central section line 2-2 of F IG 1 looking in the direction of the indicating arrows.
FIG 3 is a view in elevation showing the appliance applied to the wearer's hand with the individual loops encircling the thumb and fingers and with the connecting means or member strained lengthwise as a result of having spread the fingers and thumb apart to partly achieve the exercising result desired.
And FIG. 4 is a view of the closed hand with the thumb and fingers together and with the appliance in its collapsed or retracted state.
The overall one piece unit or appliance is made of molded rubber or rubberlike material possessed of the inherent elastic properties hereinbefore mentioned. This appliance is designated, generally stated, by the numeral 6. The normally retracted connecting means or member is denoted by the numeral 8 (FIGS. 1 and 2) and is of ringlike form. One-half portion of this ringlike member is denoted by the numeral 10 and the other half portion by the numeral 12. it is to the outer peripheral surface of the half portion 10 that the digit accommodating means is connected. This means, more specifically stated, comprises a cluster of five loops. The loop 14 at the left 7 is designed and adapted to properly encircle the wearer's thumb as illustrated in FIGS 3 and 4. The other loops, reading from left to right in FIG. 1, are finger loops and designated by the numerals l6, 18, 20 and 22 respectively. These loops embrace the individual fingers also reading from left to right and shown in FIG. 3.
it will be evident from the views of the drawing that the appliance 6 when not in use is simple, compact and is susceptible of ready attachment and utilization as illustrated in FIGS. 3 and 4. The loops 14 to 22 inclusive are fittingly and adaptably applicable to the thumb and fingers and, in this connection it will be noted, that the loops are dimensioned so that they encircle only the base portions of the thumb and fingers. It is evident therefore that the wearer does not have to deliberate upon the manner of attachment of the appliance, this being substantially self-evident by merely glancing at the construe tion as brought out in FIG. 1. The wearer does not have to fasten straps, adjust the appliance while being used or have to have any special knowledge of physical therapy treatment and appliances. To the ends desired he merely puts a loop around the base of each finger and thumb and straightens the same while spreading them apart as far as permissibly possible. Ease of application and removal saves the wearer time. The outer joint of the thumb and outer joints of the respective fingers are neither shackled nor fettered and lend themselves to use without encumbrance or difiiculty.
It will be evident that the appliance when in use allows the digits to perform both extension and abduction simultaneously. This pattern of combined movement (extension and abduction) coincides with the normal neuromuscular action of the hand as when used for example in reaching for an object, grasping the object, and releasing the object. As a simple test of this statement, try the following: place both hands in your lap. Now, with either hand reach for some object on a desksay a book Note the digits both straighten (which is extension) and separate (which is abduction). Thus by utilizing the device, the user is not only strengthening these muscles responsible for extension and abduction of the digits but also doing so in a manner at harmony with the normal working pattern of the hand. Now grasp the object reached for-.-which, of course, closes the fingers (flexion) and brings them together (abduction). Both of these actions or movements are directly opposite extension and abduction. Now release the object onto the desk and note the fingers gain straighten and separetc thus repeating the action this appliance is used for.
The foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention. Further, since numerous modifications nd changes will readily occur to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and operation shown and described, and accordingly all suitable modifications and equivalents may be resorted to, equivalents within the scope of the invention.
What is claimed as new is as follows:
1. A hand and finger exercising appliance designed and adapted to be removably hamessed on the users hand in a manner to enable the thumb and fingers to perform movements of extension and abduction simultaneously and coincident with normal neuromuscular actions of hand comprising a plurality of individual loops which are conformable with and adapted to comfortably but relatively encircle base portions only of the thumb and fingers of a selected hand, and connecting means integrally joined with and operatively linking end portions of said loops together, said appliance comprising a one piece readily applicable and removable attachment, said loops being made of rubber, and said connecting means comprising a stress and strain response member which when not in use is relaxed and ringlike in form, the respective inward ends of said loops being proximal to each other and united with a peripheral surface of a cooperating outer half portion of said ringlike memberv 2. The appliance defined in and according to claim 1, and wherein said member is of a predetermined degree of elasticity, is stretch responsive and controllably extensible and retractable.
3. The appliance defined in and according to claim 2, and wherein said member is of a dimension in strength, width and thickness that it is at rest and normally relaxed when the hand and digits are likewise relaxed and is progressively stretchable and placed under govemable stress and tension at will when the hand and digits are opened out and the digits are spread part.