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Publication numberUS3900896 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 26, 1975
Filing dateNov 25, 1974
Priority dateNov 25, 1974
Publication numberUS 3900896 A, US 3900896A, US-A-3900896, US3900896 A, US3900896A
InventorsAckerman Eugene J
Original AssigneeAckerman Eugene J
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Neck brace for athletes
US 3900896 A
Abstract
A rigid vertical member is secured to the base of the athlete's helmet and extends downwardly therefrom into a telescoping support secured to the shoulder pad and which allows rotation of the helmet and head of the athlete upon an axis substantially close to the neck and parallel to the axis of the neck, and limits flexion and extension of the neck, thereby protecting the neck from trauma.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 11 1 Ackerman 1 1 Aug. 26, 1975 1 1 NECK BRACE FOR ATHLETES [76] Inventor: Eugene J. Ackerman, 4819 S.

Packard Ave. Cudahy, Wis. 531 It) [22 Filed: Nov. 251974 21 Appl. No: 526,721

[52] U.S. Cl 2/2; 2/2; 2/3 R [51] Int. Cl." A410 13/00 [58] Field of Search 2/2, 3 R

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 5/1964 Shaffer ct a1. 2/2

31171974 6/1972 Sims A i 2/3 R 3,818,509 6/1974 Romo et a1. 2/3 R FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 627,567 6/1927 France 2/2 719,676 4/ 1 942 Germany 2/2 Primary liruminerAlfred R. Guest Attorney, Agent, or FirmAndrus, Sceales, Starke & Sawall [57] ABSTRACT A rigid vertical member is secured to the base of the athletes helmet and extends downwardly therefrom into a telescoping support secured to the shoulder pad and which allows rotation'of the helmet and head of the athlete upon an axis substantially close to the neck and parallel to the axis of the neck, and limits flexion and extension of the neck, thereby protecting the neck from trauma.

5 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures NECK BRACE FOR ATHLETES BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to a neck brace for athletes such as football players.

The general purpose is to protect the athlete from possible neck fractures or spinal cord injuries which may cause paralysis and even death.

I-leretofore devices for this general purpose have either failed to give the desired protection or they have greatly restricted the ability of the athlete to turn his head as needed particula ly in playing of football and other games.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION head.

For this purpose the lower end of the member preferably has a reduced section in cylindrical form and which extends freely down into a tubular recess in the bracket which in effect telescopes the member and permits the member to rotate upon the vertical axis of the telescoping parts.

Abutment means in the form of a shoulder at the upper end of the cylindrical portion is adapted to rest upon the bracket and prevent backlash.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIG. 1 is a perspective elevation of an athlete wearing a neck brace embodying the invention;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged top plan view of the head and adjacent shoulder pot ions of the athlete of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged detail vertical section showing the neck brace and adjacent portions of the helmet and the shoulder pad;

FIG. 4 is a section taken on line 4-4 of FIG. 3; and

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of the brace.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring to the embodiment illustrated in the drawings, the neck brace 1 comprises a rigid member extending between and joining the helmet 2 and the shoulder pad 3 of the athlete 4.

The brace is preferably molded of acrylic plastic or any suitable lightweight metal or alloy, and consists of two portions: an upper portion 5 curved to fit an adjacent part of the helmet 2 and secured thereto as by rivets 6, and a lower portion 7 which is cylindrical and fits into a sleeve 8 constituting a part of a bracket 9 on the shoulder pad 3.

A flange or downwardly facing shoulder 10 is disposed at the upper end of cylindrical portion 7 and is adapted to rest upon the top of bracket 9.

The construction illustrated protects the neck of the athlete against direct forces generally resulting in backlash and lateral st esses, thereby reducing the possibility of neck fractures and spinal cord injuries.

The construction provides for free rotation of the helmet upon the vertical axis of the cylinder 7 and sleeve 8, and which axis is disposed near and generally parallel to the axis of the neck upon which the athlete tends to turn his head.

The length of cylinder 7 and sleeve 8 should be sufficient to accommodate a limited forward tilting of the head without endangering the desired rigidity of lateral support of the helmet 2 by brace 1.

Various modes of carrying out the invention are contemplated as being within the scope of the following claims particularly pointing out and distinctly claiming the subject matter which is regarded as the invention.

I claim:

1. A neck brace for an athlete wearing a protective helmet and shoulder pads, comprising a rigid vertical member having its upper end fixed to the helmet and its lower end pivotally and extensibly supported by the shoulder pad to turn on a substantially vertial axis near the back of the neck of the athlete.

2. The neck brace of claim 1 in which the lower end portion is cylindrical to he telescoped by a sleeve secured to the shoulder pad of the athlete.

3. The neck brace of claim 1 in which abutment means between the brace and the shoulder pad prevents backlash of the neck of the athlete.

4. The neck brace of claim 3 in which said abutment means comprises a downwardly facing shoulder on the brace adapted to rest upon a portion of the shoulder neck.

5. The neck brace of claim 2 and a downwardly facing shoulder on the brace at the upper end of said cylindrical portion and adapted to rest upon the upper end of said sleeve to prevent backlash of the neck of the athlete.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3134106 *May 1, 1962May 26, 1964Archie ShafferProtective football apparatus
US3671974 *Sep 4, 1970Jun 27, 1972Sims Don DFootball training harness
US3818509 *Aug 24, 1973Jun 25, 1974L RomoApparatus for preventing neck injury
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4219193 *Nov 3, 1977Aug 26, 1980Newman Joseph WSimultaneous neck strengthener, neck protector, neck rehabilitator
US4338685 *Jun 2, 1980Jul 13, 1982Laporta Jr PhilCervical collar
US4638510 *Nov 29, 1985Jan 27, 1987Hubbard Robert PNeck protection device with occupant of a high performance vehicle
US5123408 *Sep 18, 1991Jun 23, 1992Gaines Leonard FSports helmet braced for protection of the cervical spine
US5261125 *Jan 8, 1992Nov 16, 1993Rudolph CartwrightHead impact force diversion system
US5353437 *May 24, 1993Oct 11, 1994Protec Field Gear, Inc.Combination helmet and body protection device
US5371905 *Aug 31, 1993Dec 13, 1994Keim; Hugo A.Neck and spine protection device
US5483698 *Sep 27, 1994Jan 16, 1996Douglas Protective Equipment, Inc.Helmet support and movement restrictor
US5581820 *Nov 27, 1995Dec 10, 1996Cartwright; RudolphHead impact force diversion system with transfer arm
US5953762 *Feb 11, 1999Sep 21, 1999Corbett; JosephSports helmet with protective fincap
US6006368 *Apr 9, 1998Dec 28, 1999Phillips; Richard L.Combination helmet and shoulder pad for minimizing cervical injuries
US6125851 *Jul 15, 1997Oct 3, 2000Walker; Brock M.Spinal support system for seating
US6481026Jan 3, 2002Nov 19, 2002Mcintosh Thomas JohnAthlete's neck and spine safety brace
US6532962Aug 8, 2000Mar 18, 2003Brock M. WalkerSpinal support system for seating
US6810535Jun 19, 2002Nov 2, 2004Speed Solutions, Inc.Helmet restraint system
US6874170Nov 10, 2003Apr 5, 2005Todd D. AaronHead and neck protection system
US6971123 *Jul 11, 2003Dec 6, 2005Weaver Steven DTraining device for football
US7011642Sep 22, 2003Mar 14, 2006Kls-Martin, L.P.External fixation device for cranialmaxillofacial distraction
US7849525Apr 12, 2007Dec 14, 2010Jamshid GhajarApparatus for reducing brain and cervical spine injury due to rotational movement
US8201277Aug 14, 2009Jun 19, 2012Mike OlivarezPosture aid for contact sports
US8272074 *Apr 13, 2007Sep 25, 2012Simpson Performance Products, Inc.Head restraint device having a support member with back and shoulder portions
US8341770Sep 10, 2010Jan 1, 2013Drexel UniversityCervical spine protection apparatus and methods of use
US8398170Oct 5, 2007Mar 19, 2013Brock WalkerActive response seating system
US8468613 *Dec 30, 2010Jun 25, 2013Robert D. HartyModular neck protection device
US8528113Nov 30, 2012Sep 10, 2013Drexal UniversityCervical spine protection apparatus and methods of use
US8566967May 19, 2011Oct 29, 2013Warrior Sports, Inc.Helmet with neck roll
US8621672May 6, 2011Jan 7, 2014John CHUBACKHead and neck protection apparatus
US8683612Aug 2, 2013Apr 1, 2014Drexel UniversityCervical spine protection apparatus and methods of use
US8834394Feb 4, 2010Sep 16, 2014Jamshid GhajarApparatus and methods for reducing brain and cervical spine injury
US8918920Jan 28, 2011Dec 30, 2014Shock Doctor, Inc.Soft chest protector
US20110162131 *Dec 30, 2010Jul 7, 2011Harty Robert DModular neck protection device
US20140323921 *Mar 5, 2014Oct 30, 2014Chiming HuangDevice and system to reduce traumatic brain injury
EP1413214A1 *Sep 30, 2002Apr 28, 2004Hassan ObeidatProtective device for motorcyclists
WO1993013684A1 *Jan 7, 1993Jul 22, 1993Rudolph CartwrightHead impact force diversion system
WO2005079614A1 *Jan 20, 2004Sep 1, 2005Obeidat HassanProtective accessory for motorcyclists
WO2011034942A1 *Sep 15, 2010Mar 24, 2011Shock Doctor, Inc.Chest protector
Classifications
U.S. Classification2/468, 2/425, 2/461
International ClassificationA42B3/04, A63B71/08, A63B71/12
Cooperative ClassificationA63B71/1291, A42B3/0473
European ClassificationA63B71/12N, A42B3/04B8