US 3658326 A
The present hand exercising device has a pair of air-filled rubber bulbs, one for each hand, and an unobstructed small diameter passageway connecting the bulbs. Preferably, this passageway is provided by a rubber tube which may be longitudinally stretchable. One bulb carries a normally-closed check valve which opens if the air pressure in the device drops below atmospheric pressure.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Fawick 1451 Apr. 25, 1972 541 TWO-BULB, FLUID FILLED HAND 505,745 9/1893 Barclay ..272/68 EXERCISING DEVICE 1,485,577 3/1924 Witten.... ..46/87 1,703,463 2/1929 Weigel ..46/87 Inventor: Thomas Fflwick, Hotel-Starker Hilton, 2,919,135 12/1959 Marchionda ..272/68 Shaker Heights, Ohio 44101 Primary Examiner-Anton O. Oechsle  Flled' Mar. 1968 Assistant Examiner-Richard Dror ] Appl. No.: 712,170 AztorneyEly,Golrick& Flynn 57 AB TR CT  U.S.Cl ..272/68, 272/82 1 S A 51 Int. c1. ..A63b 21/30 The Present hand exercising device has a P of air-filled 58 Field of Search ..272/68, 57; rubber bulbs. one for each hand. and an unobstructed Small v 46/8740; 9/342 diameter passageway connecting the bulbs. Preferably, this passageway is provided by a rubber tube which may be lon- 56 f Cit d gitudinally stretchable. One bulb carries a normally-closed 1 Re erences e check valve which opens if the air pressure in the device drops UNITED STATES PATENTS below atmospheric pressure.
3,345,657 10/1967 Peeler ..9/342 3 Claims, 3 Drawing Figures PATENTED APR 2 5 1912 IN VEN TOR. THOMAS L. FA W/CK TWO-BULB, FLUID FILLED HAND EXERCISING DEVIGE This invention relates to a hand exercising device.
Briefly, the present inventioncomprises a pair of fluid-filled deformable bulbs, one for each hand, and an unobstructed small diameter passageway between them. Preferably, the fluid which fills the bulbs in air. The user may squeeze either bulb with the corresponding hand to increase to the desired extent the fluid pressure in both bulbs because of the connecting passageway between them. The bulbs may be squeezed simultaneously or alternately to provide the desired exercising of either or both hands, either to increase the strength of the hands or to exercise the joints, as in the case of arthritis sufferers.
It is a principal object of this invention to provide anovel and improved hand exercising device which enables the user to selectively control the resistance to squeezing that the device exerts against either hand.
Another object of this invention is to provide such a hand exercising device that may also be used for exercising the arm and shoulder muscles.
Another object of this invention is to provide a novel and improved hand exercising device having a check valve arranged to prevent the fluid pressure inside the device from dropping below atmospheric pressure.
Further objects and advantages of this invention will be apparent from the following detailed description of certain presently-preferred embodiments thereof, which are illustrated in the accompanying drawing.
In the drawing:
FIG. 1 is a longitudinal section through a first embodiment of the present invention;
F IG. 2 is an enlarged longitudinal section through the check valve on the FIG. 1 device; and
FIG. 3 is a longitudinal section through a second embodiment of the present invention.
invention comprises a pair of hollow bulbs 10 and 10' and a hollow connecting tube 11, all composed of flexible and resilient rubber-like material. Each bulb 10 and 10' is shaped and dimensioned to be grasped by a respective hand of the user.
At its inner end the hollow bulb 10 has an inwardly-tapered neck 12 which has a snug fit in a complementary tapered recess 13 formed in the adjoining end of the connecting tube l1.'The bulb neck l2-and the connecting tube 11 are adhesively bonded to each other in fluid-tight fashion at this location, such as by vulcanized adhesion.
Similarly, the bulb 10' has at its inner end an inwardlytapered neck 12' which is received snugly in a complementary recess 13 in the connecting tube and is secured adhesively in fluid-tight fashion to the latter, such as by vulcanization.
The connecting tube 1 1 and the tapered inner ends of bulbs 10 and 10 present an elongated, small diameter, longitudinal passageway 14 which is unobstructed along its complete length between the hollow interiors of the bulbs 10 and 10'.
This small diameter passageway provides fluid communication between the interiors of the respective bulbs.
In the preferred embodiment of this invention the fluid which fills the two bulbs 10, 10' and the passageway 14 between them is air, which is at substantially atmospheric pressure when both bulbs are in their normal expanded conditions, as shown in the drawing.
Preferably, also, the bulb 10 carries a check valve in its outer end wall which is normally closed. This check valve is adapted to open in case the air pressure inside the device drops below atmospheric pressure.
Referring to FIG. 2, the check valve V may comprise a housing 15 having an inlet passage 16 which is open at the outside of the bulb l0 and which presents a valve seat 17 for engagement by a ball 18. A passage 20 in back of the ball 18 leads into the interior of the bulb 10. The valve housing presents a plurality of circumferentially-spaced ribs 19 at the front of passage 20. These ribs are spaced a short distance behind ball 18 when the latter engages valve seat 17. These ribs define between them a plurality of passages around the ball 18 when the latter abuts against the ribs.
When the pressure inside bulb 10 drops significantly below atmospheric pressure, the pressure differential on opposite sides of the ball 18 will cause it to move inwardly, away from the seat 17 and against the inner ends of the ribs 19. When the ball 18 unseats in this manner the inlet passage 16 is connected viathe passages between the ribs 19 to the passage 20 leading into the interior of the bulb, so as to bring the internal pressure in thedevice up to substantially atmospheric pressure.
It is to be understood that the check valve of FIG. 2 is disclosed merely for purposes of illustration, and that any suitable check valve may be used on the present hand exercising device.
FIG. 3 illustrates a second embodiment of the present invention having two identical bulbs 30 and 30' with tapered inner ends 32 and 32', respectively, which terminate in annular flanges 31 and 31', respectively. These flanges are held in fluid-tight, abutting engagement with each other by a metal ring 33 which is crimped tightly around them. The inner ends of the bulbs. provide the unobstructed, small diameter passageway 34 connecting the interiors of the bulbs 30 and 30'. Both bulbs preferably are of deformable and resilient soft rubber or the like. Bulb 30 carries a check valve V in its outer end wall for the purpose already explained.
In the use of this exercising device, the user grasps one bulb in-each hand and he may squeeze either or both bulbs to increase the air pressure in them to the desired extent. For example, if the user wishes to exercise one hand he can first squeeze the other bulb with his opposite hand to increase the air pressure in the bulb grasped by the hand he wishes to exercise. it will be understood that the bulb which is squeezed first offers relatively slight resistance initially to being compressed, but the bulb held by the other hand will be at the increased pressure before it is squeezed and therefore it presents a relatively high resistance initially, which initial resistance can be controlled by the squeezing force exerted by the opposite hand. Therefore, the present invention provides a hand exercising device whose resistance to squeezing can be selectively regulated by the user. 7
Obviously, both bulbs can be squeezed simultaneously, to match the strength of one hand against the other, or the bulbs can be squeezed and relaxed in alternate sequence to alternately exercise the hands individually.
The connecting passageway between the bulbs, though unobstructed, is of sufficiently small diameter to provide a brief time delay. between the squeezing of one bulb and the resulting pressure increase in the other bulb. This enables the user to time the squeezing of the latter bulb so that this hand will encounter a progressively increasing resistance which is due both to the delayed pressure increase originating from the first bulb and the pressure increase due to the squeezing of the latter bulb itself.
In the embodiment of FIG. 1, the connecting tube 14 preferably is longitudinally stretchable, such as by being composed of soft rubber or the like, and it may have a length between the bulbs which is appropriate for the user to exercise his arm and shoulder muscles by pulling the bulbs apart, stretching the connecting tube in the process of doing so.
While certain presently preferred embodiments of the present exercising device have been described in detail with reference to the accompanying drawing, it is to be understood that various modifications, omissions and adaptations which depart from the disclosed embodiment may be adopted without departing from the scope of the present invention. For
example, the normal fluid pressure in the bulbs may be above atmospheric, and the fluid itself may be a gaseous or liquid medium'other than air, if desired.
1. A hand exercising device comprising a pair of fluid-filled bulbs of deformable material and each shaped to be gripped in a respective hand of the user, means providing an unobpresenting an obstructed small diameter air passageway connected at its opposite ends to the interior of said bulbs, and a normally closed check valve on one bulb which is constructed and arranged to open if the air pressure in the device drops significantly below atmospheric pressure.
3. A hand-exercising device according to claim 2, wherein said tube is flexible and is longitudinally stretchable manually.
* i i ll