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Publication numberUS3905598 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 16, 1975
Filing dateMar 13, 1974
Priority dateMar 13, 1974
Publication numberUS 3905598 A, US 3905598A, US-A-3905598, US3905598 A, US3905598A
InventorsGeorge M Ballog
Original AssigneeGeorge M Ballog
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Tennis racket hand grip
US 3905598 A
Abstract
A hand grip for providing a tennis racket with a prescribed gripping posture for the hand when the racket is gripped by the hand in either of two selectable angular positions about the longitudinal axis of the racket handle, together with a positive indication to the hand of the placement of the racket at either of the two positions.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Ballog atent 1 1 1 TENNIS RACKET HAND GRIP [76] Inventor: George M. Ballog, 266-3B lven Ave., St. Davids, Pa. 19087 22 Filed: Mar. 13, 1974 21 Appl. No.: 450,607

[52] US. Cl. 273/75 [51] Int. Cl. 1 A63B 49/08 [58] Field of Search 273/73 J, 75, 81 B, 81.4,

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 412,479 10/1889 Davis 273/75 UX 1,917,236 7/1933 Bloomstrand 273/75 UX 2,205,769 6/1940 Sweetlzmd 273/81.4 X 3,817,521 6/1974 Wright 273/75 3,868,110 2/1975 Jones 273/75 [4 1 Sept. 16, 1975 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 369,888 9/1930 United Kingdom 273/75 21 1,792 2/1924 United Kingdom... 273/75 762,059 1/1934 France 273/75 229,103 2/1925 United Kingdom 273/75 407,270 3/1934 United Kingdom 273/75 Primary ExaminerRichard J. Apley Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Samuelson & Jacob 5 7 ABSTRACT A hand grip for providing a tennis racket with a prescribed gripping posture for the hand when the racket is gripped by the hand in either of two selectable angular positions about the longitudinal axis of the racket handle, together with a positive indication to the hand of the placement of the racket at either of the two positions.

20 Claims, 15 Drawing Figures PATENTEU 3,905,598

SHEET 1 OF 3 BACKHAND FIG. I FIG. 2

PATENTEDSEP 1 61975 3,905,598

HEET 2 f 3 30 FIG. 7

FIG. 8

60 56 7/ 74 58 34 FIG. 3 FIG. 9

7 fif" 39 3 50 FIG. lo

30 v 9 2 F \g 64 I 38 ,5 j 39 64 /0 FIG. 1

TENNIS RACKET HAND GRIP The present invention relates generally to tennis rackets and pertains. more specifically, to a hand grip for providing a tennis racket with a prescribed gripping posture for the hand when the hand grips the racket in either one of two selectable angular positions about the longitudinal axis of the racket handle.

The recent increase in popularity of the game of ten nis has given rise to a greater demand for more and better equipment with which to play the game. Tennis rackets have undergone considerable improvement over the past several years by way of overall construction. but relatively little has been done to improve the means by which the racket is coupled to the hand of the player; that is, the hand grip configuration of tennis rackets has remained essentially the same.

It is generally accepted that, for optimum results, a tennis racket should be held within the hand. during play, in one of two discrete gripping modes or positions relative to the hand. The first such mode places the racket in position for the forehand stroke and the second mode places the racket in position for either a backhand stroke or the service stroke. It is often difficult for the novice, as well as for the experienced player, to constantly shift the racket from one such prescribed position to the other. during play, with accuracy and to maintain the hand in a comfortable. effective gripping posture in such accurately determined po sitions of the racket.

Contoured. form-fitting hand grips have been suggested for use in connection with numerous athletic implements where it is desired to accurately and effectively couple the hand of a player with the implement. However. the primary drawback to the use of such a form-fitting hand grip in connection with a tennis racket has been the requirement that the racket be held effectively in either one of the two positions described above. Whereas a formfitting construction might suit one position, that construction would become unnatural and uncomfortable in the other position of the racket.

It is therefore an object of the invention to provide a tennis racket with a hand grip which is constructed so as to enable the racket to be held in either one of two accurately determined positions relative to the hand. the hand grip construction providing an anatomically natural gripping posture for the hand in either one of the two positionsv Another object of the invention is to provide a hand grip of the type described and in which the construction of the hand grip provides a positive indication to the hand of the placement of the racket at either one of the two prescribed positions.

Still another object of the invention is to provide a hand grip which strengthens and otherwise enhances the coupling between a tennis racket and the hand of the player.

A further object of the invention is to provide a ten nis racket hand grip construction which enables increased surface area contact between the hand and the gripped surface and a concomitant increased resistance to torque. or the tendency to twist the racket Within the hand during hits which apply off-axis forces to the face of the racket. thereby strengthening and enhancing the coupling between the racket and the hand.

A still further object of the invention is to provide an anatomically form-fitting hand grip which enables a player quickly to locate and lock his hand into an appropriate fixed position relative to the face of the racket and to repeat such placement with assurance throughout the game.

The above objects, as well as still further objects and advantages, are attained by the invention which may be described briefly as a hand grip for providing, at the handle of a tennis racket. a prescribed gripping posture for the hand when the racket is gripped by the hand in either of two selectable angular positions about the longitudinal axis of the shaft thereof, together with a positive indication to the hand of the placement of the racket at either of the two-positions. the hand grip comprising first contoured means on the gripping surface for positively locating the thumb and forefinger of the hand in a given relative alignment at a first location on the gripping surface with the hand in the prescribed gripping posture when the racket is in one of the two positions. and second contoured means on the gripping surface for positively locating the thumb and forefinger in the given relative alignment at a second location on the gripping surface with the hand in essentially the same gripping posture when the racket is in the other of the two positions, the second location being spaced angularly and axially from the first location such that the hand grip is displaced angularly and axially relative to the hand when the placement of the racket is changed from one to the other of the two positions.

The invention will be more fully understood, while still further objects and advantages thereof will become apparent. in the following detailed description of preferred embodiments illustrated in the accompanying drawing, wherein:

FIG. I is a pictorial illustration of a tennis racket having a hand grip constructed in accordance with the invention and being gripped in a first prescribed position relative to the hand of a player wherein the face of the racket makes a 45 angle with the plane of the paper;

FIG. 2 is a pictorial illustration of the tennis racket being gripped in a second prescribed position wherein the face of the racket is in the plane of the paper;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged fragmentary side elevational view of the tennis racket showing one side of the hand p:

FIG. 4 is an enlarged fragmentary side elevational view showing the other side of the hand grip;

FIG. 5 is an enlarged front elevational view of the hand grip;

FIG. 6 is an enlarged rear elevational view of the hand grip;

FIGS. 7 through 11 are lateral cross-sectional views taken, respectively, along lines 77, 8-8. 9-9, l0-l0 and llll of FIG. 4;

FIG. 12 is an enlarged fragmentary side elevational view ofa tennis racket similar to that of FIG. 1 showing one side of another hand grip constructed in accordance with the invention;

FIG. I3 is an enlarged fragmentary side elevational view showing the other side of the alternate hand grip of FIG. 12;

FIG. 14 is an enlarged rear elevational view of the alternate hand grip; and

FIG. 15 is an enlarged front elevational view of the alternate hand grip.

Referring now to the drawing, and especially to FIGS. 1 and 2 thereof, a tennis racket is illustrated at and is seen to have a head frame including a racket face 22 at one end thereof and a shaft 24 extending along the longitudinal axis A of the racket from the head frame to the other end thereof. A hand grip 26, constructed in accordance with the invention, is affixed to the shaft 24 and enables the tennis racket to be gripped by a players hand, illustrated in phantom at 28, in either one of two prescribed positions relative to the hand 28.

The first of the above two positions, as illustrated in FIG. I, is especially wellsuited to forehand play. The hand grip 26 has a gripping surface which is contoured to receive the hand 28 and provide an anatomically natural gripping posture which couples the hand with the racket in a generally accepted grip position for the forehand tennis stroke.

The second of the above two positions, as illustrated in FIG. 2, is especially well-suited to backhand play and to the service stroke. The contour of the gripping surface 30 is such that upon rotation of the tennis racket 20, together with the integral hand grip 26, angularly about the longitudinal axis A about one-eighth ofa full turn, that is, through an angle of approximately 45, relative to the hand, the tennis racket will be re-positioned in the hand and the gripping surface contour will provide an anatomically natural gripping posture which couples the hand with the racket in a generally accepted grip position for the backhand and service strokes.

Thus, the hand grip 26 provides an appropriate gripping configuration to establish an effective gripping posture for the hand in either one of the two discrete positions of the racket relative to the hand. The contour of the gripping surface 30 which accomplishes the effective coupling of the hand with the racket in either of the two positions is best illustrated in FIGS. 3 through 11. Gripping surface 30 extends longitudinally along the hand grip 26 from an uppermost end 32 to a lowermost end 34 at the butt end 36 of the racket and includes a forward edge 38, around which the fingers of the players hand are to be placed and a rearward edge 39 against which the base of the thumb and part of the palm of the hand are to be placed.

A thumb groove extends in a lateral direction along the gripping surface 30 from the rearward edge 39 toward the forward edge 38, but terminates short of the forward edge 38 at a terminal end 42. A forefinger groove 44 passes around the forward edge 38 and extends in a lateral direction from the forward edge 38 toward rearward edge 39, but terminates short of the rearward 39 at a terminal end 46. The thumb and forefinger grooves 40 and 44 are generally aligned with one another in the lateral direction and the respective terminal ends 42 and 46 confront one another at a ridge 48 which extends generally longitudinally along the gripping su face 30 between the confronting terminal ends 42 and 46.

Immediately beneath the thumb and forefinger grooves is a middle finger groove 50 which also passes around the forward edge 38 and extends laterally along the gripping surface 30 toward the rearward edge 39. The middle finger groove 50 is generally parallel to both the forefinger groove 44 and the thumb groove 40 and extends alongside those grooves to pass between the ridge 48 and the butt end 36 of the racket, the middle finger groove extending laterally beyond the ridge 48 toward the rearward edge 39 and terminating closer to the rearward edge 39 than does the forefinger groove 44.

The ridge 48 has a first raised portion 52 bounding the thumb groove 40 and the forefinger groove 44 at the respective terminal ends 42 and 46 thereof such that the thumb and forefinger grooves 40 and 44, together with the first raised portion 52, establish full first thumb contour and forefinger contour locating surfaces which positively locate the thumb and forefinger relative to the shaft 24 of the tennis racket when the thumb and forefinger are placed in their respective grooves 40 and 44. Thus, upon gripping the hand grip 26 for forehand play, as illustrated in FIG. 1, the thumb is placed in the thumb groove 40 with the tip of the thumb confronting first raised portion 52 and the forefinger is placed in the forefinger groove 44, with the tip of the forefinger also confronting the first raised portion 52. The middle finger is placed in the middle finger groove 50. The positively defined positioning of the thumb, forefinger and middle finger places the tennis racket 20 in the prescribed position for forehand play while the hand is positively locked into the desired posture for such play. Thus, the full contoured locating surfaces established by the thumb and forefinger grooves 40 and 44, together with first raised portion 52, provide means by which the hand 28 and the racket 20 are positively located relative to one another for forehand play, while establishing the desired gripping posture. In addition, the full contoured configuration for the thumb and forefinger aid in providing a positive indication to the hand of the proper placement of the racket relative to the hand.

The ridge 48 has a second raised portion 54 extending into the middle finger groove 50 such that the middle finger groove 50, together with the second raised portion 54, establishes full second thumb contour and forefinger contour locating surfaces which also can accommodate the thumb and forefinger. However, the location of the second raised portion 54 laterally relative to first raised portion 52 is such that the first and second thumb contour and forefinger contour locating surfaces are spaced angularly from one another so that placement of the thumb and forefinger within the contours of the second thumb and forefinger locating sur faces requires rotation of the hand grip 26, and concomitant rotation of shaft 24, by an amount equivalent to about one-eighth of a full turn of the racket 20. Stated another way, rotation of the racket about longitudinal axis A, by approximately 45, is required to properly place the thumb and forefinger in the second thumb contour and forefinger contour locating surfaces defined by the second raised portion 54 and the middle finger groove 50. When it is desired to grip the racket 20 in the prescribed position, relative to the hand, for backhand play, or for a service stroke, as illustrated in FIG. 2, the racket, together with the hand grip 30, is rotated and is displaced axially relative to the hand such that the thumb and forefinger are placed in the middle finger groove 50 with the tip of the thumb confronting second raised portion 54 and the tip of the forefinger also confronting the second raised portion 54. The positively defined positioning of the thumb, forefinger and middle finger now places the tennis racket 20 in the prescribed position for backhand play, or for a service stroke, while the hand is coupled with the hand grip in the desired gripping posture. Thus, the full contoured locating surfaces established by the combined second raised portion 54 and middle finger groove 50 provide means by which the hand and the racket are positively located relative to one another for backhand play, or for a service stroke. while the de sired gripping posture is maintained.

The longitudinal length of the gripping surface 30, between ends 32 and 34, is great enough to allow axial displacement of the hand grip 26 between the first and second positions described above while still accommodating all of the fingers of the hand. Thus, the longitudinal distance between the middle finger groove 50 and the butt end 36 of the handle exceeds that which would accommodate the fourth finger and the fifth finger, when the thumb and forefinger are placed in the thumb and forefinger grooves 40 and 42, by an amount great enough to accommodate the fifth finger when the thumb and forefinger are placed in the middle finger groove 50. In this manner, all of the fingers will grip the gripping surface in either position of the racket 20.

For added effectiveness in backhand play, and during service strokes, the heel of the palm of the hand is placed within a complementary surface contour 56 of a laterally extending flange 58 at the butt end 36 of the racket. Surface contour 56 preferably may include concave portions. By fitting the heel of the palm of the hand into contour 56 of flange 58. the effective lever of the hand grip is extended to the heel of the palm of the hand.

In the embodiment of FIGS. 1 through 11, the hand grip 26 is provided with a fully contoured gripping surface which includes a fourth finger groove 60 extending generally laterally along the gripping surface alongside the middle finger groove 50, between the middle finger groove and the butt end 36, and a fifth finger groove 62 extending generally laterally along the gripping surface alongside the fourth finger groove 60, between the fourth finger groove and the butt end 36. An additional fifth finger groove 64 extends laterally across the gripping surfaces immediately below fifth finger groove 62 to accommodate the fifth finger when the racket is held in the backhand play positionv Thus, upon shifting the racket from one position to the other, the fingers are merely shifted to the next adjacent grooves, with each finger having a corresponding groove in each position of the racket.

As best seen in FIGS. 7 through 11, the lateral crosssectional profile contour of the hand grip 26 taken through the finger grooves is generally elliptical, with the major axis of each elliptical contour aligned generally in a forward to rearward direction. Each descending elliptical profile contour is rotated about longitudinal axis A relative to the previous profile such that each consecutive profile is angularly spaced from the previous profile. Thus, the profile illustrated in FIG. 7 has a major axis and the major axis 72 of the profile illustrated in FIG. 8 is at an angle to axis 70 of FIG. 7, axis 74 in FIG. 9 is at an angle to axis 72, axis 76 in FIG. 10 is at an angle to axis 74 and axis 78 in FIG. I1 is at an angle to axis 76. The total rotation between axis 78 and axis 70 preferably is approximately 45. Each of the major axes 70, 72, 74, 76 and 78 make an acute angle B (Sec FIG. 4) with the longitudinal axis A so that the lateral direction of extent of the thumb and finger grooves 40, 42, 50, 62 and 64 is in a downward direction from the forward edge 38 toward the rearward edge 39. The asymmetrical contour of the gripping surface 30 provided by the above described elliptical configuration of the finger groove profiles and the relative positioning of these profiles establishes a gripping posture, in either relative position of racket and hand, which effects a strong coupling between the racket and the players hand. Such a coupling not only transmits force more effectively from the hand to the racket, with less tendency toward slippage and vibration upon impact of the tennis ball on the face of the racket, but per mits a stronger resistance to torque caused by an offaxis hit on the racket face. The concomitant resistance to twist increases the availability of consistant control of the ball. An additional benefit is added comfort and a lessened tendency toward rubbing and chafing of the hand because of the increased supportive contact area between the hand and the hand grip, which distributes the frictional load more evenly.

The hand grip 26 preferably is fabricated by molding and, while the hand grip can be molded on a custom basis to fit the best contour for the particular player who uses the racket, a range of basic sizes and contours is feasible to accommodate most players without the necessity for custom molding. Either resilient materials, such as elastomers, or rigid materials may be used to attain the advantages set forth above.

Turning now to FIGS. 12 through 15, another embodiment of the invention is illustrated in the form of alternate hand grip 100, shown affixed to shaft 24 of tennis racket 20. Alternate hand grip is similar to hand grip 26 in overall configuration, with the exception that full contoured grooves are not provided for the fourth and fifth fingers, when the racket is held in the first, or forehand, grip position, and for the middle, fourth and fifth fingers, when the racket is held in the second. or backhand, grip position.

Thus, hand grip 100 has a gripping surface which extends longitudinally along the hand grip 100 from an uppermost end 132 to a lowermost end 134 at the butt end 136 of the racket and includes a forward edge 138 and a rearward edge 139. A thumb groove 140 extends laterally along the gripping surface 130 and terminates at terminal end 142. A forefinger groove 144 extends laterally in general alignment with thumb groove 140 and terminates at terminal end 146. A ridge 148 extends generally longitudinally along the gripping surface 130 between the confronting terminal ends 142 and 146. Immediately beneath the thumb and forefinger grooves is a middle finger groove 150 which also extends laterally across the hand grip 100.

The ridge 148 has a first raised portion 152 bounding the thumb groove I40 and the forefinger groove 144 at the respective terminal ends 142 and 146 thereof such that full first thumb contour and forefinger contour locating surfaces are provided, as in the earlier described hand grip 26, for accommodating the thumb and forefinger in the first gripping position. Likewise, ridge I48 has a second raised portion 154 extending into the middle finger groove 150 to establish full second thumb contour and forefinger contour locating surfaces which accommodate the thumb and forefinger in the second gripping position, all as described more fully in connection with hand grip 26.

The lateral and axial relationships between the first thumb and forefinger contours and the second thumb and forefinger contours delineate the first and second grip positions, as described in connection with hand grip 26.

At the butt end 136 of the racket, hand grip 100 is provided with a laterally extending flange 158 having a surface contour 156 complementary to the heel of the palm of the hand of a player. Surface contour 156 preferably may include concave portions. In this manner, added effectiveness is gained in backhand play, and during service strokes, by extending the effective lever of the hand grip to the heel of the palm of the hand.

Between the middle finger groove 150 and the flange 158, gripping surface 130 of the hand grip 100 is provided with a gripping surface portion 160 for accommodating the remaining fingers of the hand in either of the two gripping positions. Since each of the gripping positions is adequately delineated by the full contoured thumb and forefinger locating surfaces, further full contoured surfaces for the remaining fingers, although they provide the added advantages of precise finger placement and tactile reference, are not essential to the attainment of the basic advantages of providing a desired hand posture in either one of the two prescribed positions of the racket.

The thumb and finger grooves 140, 144 and 150, and gripping surface portion 160 have an overall contour which follows the descending, rotated elliptical profile contour described in connection with hand grip 26. Thus, the asymmetrical contour of the entire gripping surface 130 provided by the elliptical configuration of the finger groove profiles and the fingeraccommodating surface profiles, together with the relative positioning of these profiles establishes the desired gripping posture.

The above detailed description of preferred embodiments of the invention is provided by way of example only. Various details of design and construction may be modified without departing from the true spirit and scope of the invention as set forth in the appended claims.

The embodiments of the invention in which an exclusive property or privilege is claimed are defined as follows:

1. In a tennis racket having a head frame and a handle with a butt end, said racket having a longitudinal axis, a hand grip for providing, at the handle of the tennis racket, a prescribed gripping posture for the hand when the racket is gripped by the hand in either of two selectable positions, said hand grip comprising:

a gripping surface extending longitudinally along the handle and terminating adjacent the butt end, said gripping surface having a forward edge on one side of the handle and a rearward edge on an opposite side of the handle;

a thumb groove extending generally laterally along the gripping surface from said rearward edge toward said forward edge and having a terminal end;

a forefinger groove extending generally laterally along the gripping surface from said forward edge toward said rearward edge and being generally aligned and end to end with the thumb groove and having a terminal end confronting and closely adja cent to the thumb groove terminal end;

a narrow ridge extending generally longitudinally between the closely adjacent, confronting terminal ends of said grooves; and

a middle finger groove extending generally laterally along the gripping surface from said forward edge toward said rearward edge and alongside the thumb and forefinger grooves and passing between said narrow ridge and the butt end of the racket and extending laterally beyond said narrow ridge;

said narrow ridge having a first raised portion bounding the thumb groove and the forefinger groove at the respective terminal ends thereof such that the thumb and forefinger grooves, together with the first raised portion, establish a first thumb contour locating surface and a closely adjacent first forefinger contour locating surface for delineating said prescribed gripping posture for the hand, and a second raised portion extending generally laterally from said first raised portion and toward said forward edge and into the middle finger groove such that the middle finger groove, together with the second raised portion, establish a second thumb contour locating surface and a closely adjacent second forefinger contour locating surface for delineating essentially the same prescribed gripping posture for the hand; and

said first and second thumb contour and forefinger contour locating surfaces being spaced at a predetermined angularity from one another in a lateral and longitudinal direction such that upon placement of the thumb and forefinger end to end within the respective thumb and forefinger grooves, with the first raised portion between the thumb and forefinger, the hand will be in said prescribed grip ping posture while the racket will be in one of said two positions and upon placement of the thumb and forefinger end to end within the middle finger groove, with the second raised portion between the thumb and forefinger, the hand will be in essentially the same prescribed gripping posture while the racket will be rotated to the other of said two positions over an angular measure established by said predetermined angularity.

2. The invention of claim 1 wherein the predetermined angularity between the first and second thumb contour and forefinger contour locating surfaces is approximately 45.

3. The invention of claim 1 wherein the racket is displaced axially relative to the hand, when moved from one to the other of said positions and the longitudinal distance between the middle finger groove and the butt end of the handle exceeds that which would accommodate the fourth finger and fifth finger, when the thumb and forefinger are placed in the thumb and forefinger grooves, by at least an amount great enough to accommodate the fifth finger when the thumb and forefinger are placed in the middle finger groove such that all of the fingers will grip the gripping surface in either position of the racket.

4. The invention of claim 3 wherein the predetermined angularity between the first and second thumb contour and forefinger contour locating surfaces is approximately 45.

5. The invention of claim 3 including a laterally extending flange adjacent the butt end, said flange having a surface contour complementary to the heel of the palm of the hand.

6. The invention of claim 3 including:

a fourth finger groove extending generally laterally along the gripping surface alongside the middle fin ger groove between the middle finger groove and the butt end; and

a fifth finger groove extending generally laterally along the gripping surface alongside the fourth finger groove between the fourth finger groove and the butt end.

7. The invention of claim 6 including a further fifth finger groove extending generally laterally along the gripping surface alongside the first said fifth finger groove between the first said fifth finger groove and the butt end.

8. The invention of claim 7 wherein the gripping surface includes a forward edge around which the fingers are to be placed and a rearward edge against which the palm of the hand is to be placed and the lateral crosssectional profile of the handle taken through any of said grooves is generally elliptical, with the major axis of the elliptical profile extending in a forward and rearward direction.

9. The invention of claim 8 wherein the major axis of the elliptical profile of each finger groove makes an acute angle with the longitudinal axis.

10. The invention of claim 9 wherein the major axis of the elliptical profile of each consecutive finger groove is angularly spaced from that of the previous finger groove, the total angular spacing between the elliptical profile at the forefinger groove and the elliptical profile adjacent the butt end being approximately 45.

11. The invention of claim 3 including a contoured surface between the middle finger groove and the butt end for accommodating the fourth and fifth fingers in said prescribed gripping posture when the racket is in one of said two positions and for accommodating the third, fourth and fifth fingers in said prescribed gripping posture when the racket is in the other of said two positions.

12. The invention of claim 11 wherein the gripping surface includes a forward edge around which the fingers are to be placed and a rearward edge against which the palm of the hand is to be placed and the lateral cross-sectional profile of the handle taken through any of the grooves and the finger-accommodating contoured surface is generally elliptical, with the major axis of the elliptical profile extending in a forward and rearward direction.

13. The invention of claim 12 wherein the major axis of the elliptical profile of each finger groove and each finger location on the finger-accommodating contoured surface makes an acute angle with the longitudinal axis.

14. The invention of claim 13 wherein the major axis of the elliptical profile of each consecutive finger groove and finger location is angularly spaced from that ofa previous finger groove and finger location. the total angular spacing between the elliptical profile at the forefinger groove and the elliptical profile adjacent the butt end being approximately 45.

15. In a tennis racket having a head frame and a shaft, said racket having a longitudinal axis, a hand grip for providing, on the shaft of the tennis racket, a prescribed gripping posture for the hand when the racket is gripped by the hand in either of two selectable positions, said hand grip comprising: i

a gripping surface extending longitudinally along the hand grip, said gripping surface having a forward edge on one side of the hand grip and a rearward edge on an opposite side of the hand grip;

- first contoured'means on said gripping surface extending generally laterally between said forward edge and said rearward edge for positively locating the thumb and forefinger of the hand in a given relative alignment at a first location on the gripping surface with the hand in said prescribed gripping posture when the racket is in one of said two positions; and

second contoured means on said gripping surface extending generally laterally between said forward edge and said rearward edge for positively locating the thumb and forefinger in essentially the same given relative alignment at a second location on the gripping surface with the hand in essentially the same gripping posture when the racket is in the other of said two positions;

said second location being spaced at a predetermined angularity from said first location in a lateral and longitudinal direction such that the hand grip is rotated and displaced laterally and longitudinally relative to the hand when the placement of the racket is changed from one to the other of said two positions over an angular measure established by said predetermined angularity.

16. The invention of claim 15 wherein the predetermined angularity between the first and second thumb locations is approximately 45.

17. The invention of claim 15 including means for loeating the middle finger on the gripping surface in essentially the same alignment relative to the thumb and forefinger when the thumb and forefinger are in either of said first and second locations and the racket is in either of said two positions.

18. The invention of claim 17 wherein the predetermined angularity between the first and second thumb and forefinger locations is approximately 45.

19. The invention of claim 17 including means for locating the fourth and fifth fingers on the gripping surface in essentially the same alignment relative to the thumb, forefinger and middle finger when the thumb and forefinger are in either of said first and second locations and the racket is in either of said two positions.

20. The invention of claim 19 wherein the predetermined angularity between the first and second thumb and forefinger locations is approximately 45.

* l l l=

Patent Citations
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US1917236 *Mar 6, 1931Jul 11, 1933Bloomstrand RolandTennis racket and other play implement
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4006896 *Jul 10, 1975Feb 8, 1977Soldavini Alfred CTennis racket
US4101125 *Jun 25, 1976Jul 18, 1978George HeathAdjustable tennis racket
US4123054 *Mar 2, 1976Oct 31, 1978Jacqueline SeptierTennis racket frame
US4653754 *Jan 27, 1986Mar 31, 1987Cross William DBall bat having grooved knob
US4664381 *Aug 19, 1985May 12, 1987Klink And Aaron Products, Ltd.Grip for tennis racket
US4717151 *Aug 7, 1986Jan 5, 1988Dubois Craig RGrip for game racquets
US5295684 *Mar 24, 1993Mar 22, 1994Juan BrachoEnd cap for racket handle
US5366218 *Sep 28, 1992Nov 22, 1994Gong Shao WeiTennis racket
US5409216 *Mar 1, 1993Apr 25, 1995R. H. Associates, Ltd.Racket handle
US5551690 *Apr 10, 1995Sep 3, 1996R. H. Associates, Ltd.Racket handle
US5641162 *Jun 7, 1995Jun 24, 1997R. H. Associates, Ltd.Method of aligning and using a racket handle
US5795254 *Jun 17, 1996Aug 18, 1998R. H. Associates, Ltd.Racket handle
US6305051Apr 28, 1998Oct 23, 2001Myong Ho ChoFinger supporting structure
US7276000 *Jul 3, 2006Oct 2, 2007Baker Michael BTraining grip for a tennis racquet
US7758455 *Aug 3, 2006Jul 20, 2010Thomas Carl ATennis training grip and methods of use thereof
DE2928995A1 *Jul 18, 1979Apr 2, 1981Valentin CubGriff fuer sportgeraete
WO1985004814A1 *Apr 17, 1985Nov 7, 1985Andrew J BrownSix sided racket handle
WO1994009864A1 *Oct 26, 1993May 11, 1994Christer DahlstroemHandle for sports equipment
WO2002056976A1Jan 22, 2002Jul 25, 2002Angel RodriguezDevice for positioning the hand on the handle of a sport equipment and handle incorporating such a device
Classifications
U.S. Classification473/538
International ClassificationA63B49/08, A63B49/02
Cooperative ClassificationA63B49/08, A63B59/0025, A63B59/0029
European ClassificationA63B59/00B3, A63B49/08