US RE40215 E1
An athletic shoe is provided which contributes a dynamic stability of the shoe during several athletic activities. The athletic shoe comprises a tapered lateral wedge section and may further include a lateral heel stabilizer, a medial heel wedge and a tapered lateral forefoot section.
1. A stabilizer athletic shoe comprising a sole having a bottom portion, a forefoot having a top portion, a rearfoot portion, an edge and a heel portion, said forefoot portion having a medial part and a lateral part, an external lateral foot stabilizer attached to the edge of said sole, a bottom forefoot wedge member attached to the bottom of said sole, a medial heel wedge having a bottom portion wherein said heel wedge spans substantially the entire length, and about one-half the width of said heel, and a heel stabilizer extending from the bottom portion of said heel to the top of the rearfoot portion.
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5. A stabilizer athletic shoe comprising a sole having a bottom portion, a forefoot having a top portion, a rear foot portion, an edge and a heel portion, said forefoot portion having a medial part and a lateral part, and a lateral foot stabilizer integral with and conformally contouring the edge of said sole.
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This invention relates generally to athletic shoes and particularly to stabilizer athletic shoes for persons engaged in athletic activities. More specifically, this invention relates to an improved athletic shoes construction which incorporate features designed to increase foot and ankle stability during various athletic activities in order to decrease muscle fatigue, enhance performance and minimize injuries.
Various athletic shoes are presently being marketed for different activities such as running, tennis, basketball, racqetball and golf. These shoes are designed to prevent, or at least minimize injuries caused by lateral foot ankle instability during such activities. Current athletic shoes do not adequately guard against injuries caused by all type of athletic activities, including those activities which involve side-to-side jumping motions. These activities have greater tendency for lateral foot ankle instability, and hence injury in the foot and/or ankle.
U.S. Pat. No. 3,738,373, issued Jun. 12, 1973 descries an athletic shoe which incorporates a flexible wedge mounted therein which extends completely to the rear edge of the heel thereby providing maximum “cushion”.
An earlier patent, U.S. Pat. No. 2,847,769, issued Aug. 19, 1958 discloses shoes for golfers which are designed to compel a golfer to automatically assume the correct golf stance.
Other athletic shoes incorporate air-cushioning means, usually in the heels, for absorbing the impact experienced during said activities.
So far as it is know, there is no single pair of athletic shoes which adequately affords the desired degree of protection and guards against injuries resulting from foot instability during athletic activities of the type hereinbefore mentioned. This is largely because the foot-angle structure is complex and includes numerous joint axis with different movements and displacements in response to varying impacts and positions. Thus, the design of an athletic shoe which can protect against the different possible injuries resulting from a variety of athletic activities must take into consideration such factors as supination, pronation, dorsiflexion, plantarflexion, abduction, and adduction which occur at the foot-ankle joint during said sports activities. Accordingly, there is need for a single athletic shoe which is designed to afford maximum benefits for those engaged in various athletic activities in which foot-ankle injuries are matter of common experiences.
It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide an athletic shoe which is designed to afford maximum protection against injuries resulting from sports activities involving jumping and side-to-side motions such as, e.g., running, jumping, basketball, tennis and racquetball.
It is a further object of this invention to provide athletes with athletic shoes which incorporate features that counter the adverse effects of such factors as supination, pronation, dorsiflexion, plantarflexion, abduction and adduction experienced by athletes during several athletic activities.
The foregoing and other objects of this invention will become more apparent from the following detailed description and accompanying drawings.
In accordance with the present invention an athletic shoe is provided which, because of its unique construction, assures dynamic foot stability, reduces lateral ankle instability and alleviate foot fatigue which often results from athletic activities such as jogging, running, tennis, basketball, jumping and even weight lifting exercises. In one embodiment, the athletic shoe comprises heel and a sole having a rear foot portion and a forefoot portion which has a medial section and a lateral section. The forefoot portion has a lateral wedge conformally affixed thereto or formed, integrally therewith, said lateral wedge member being tapered from the medial section toward the lateral mid portion of the forefoot.
In a second embodiment, the shoe is similar to the first embodiment and further includes a lateral heel stabilizer conformally attached to the heel counter, a medial heel wedge spanning the length and width of the shoe heel, and a tapered lateral forefoot member attached to the bottom sole of the shoe.
In the drawings, wherein the same reference numerals in the different figures designate like parts:
Referring now to the embodiment of this invention illustrated in
In this embodiment of the invention, and as seen in
The lateral forefoot stabilizer 111 serves a similar function and purpose as the lateral forefoot stabilizer 21 described in conjunction with FIG. 1. The lateral forefoot stabilizer 111 is made of plastic or rubber, the same as the shoe, is disposed proximal to the 5th metatarsal, is conformably attached laterally to the shoe, extending about 1 to 3 inches from the middle toward the toe portion 105. The provision of the lateral forefoot stabilizer 111 guards against lateral instability of the foot and the ankle (strains and sprains) and excessive frontal plane motions.
The lateral heel stabilizer 113 is a piece of rubber or plastic (EVA) which is about 2 to 3 inches wide, about 2-3 inches high (depending on the height of the shoe) and is about ⅛ to ¼ inch thick. The lateral heel stabilizer 113 is attached to the rear exterior of the shoe above the heel 107 extending from the proximal end 113B to the distal end 113A near the top of the shoe, thus adding firm support to the lateral heel and reducing lateral ankle sprains experienced in sports such as basketball and tennis. It also provides added stability and push-off power in such activity as weight lifting.
The athletic shoe 100 also comprises a medial heel wedge 115, which may be ribbed, grooved or patterned as desired, and it is incorporated into the heel structure and/or affixed thereto at about 2 to 5 degrees relative to the ground. As shown in
Referring again to
It can be appreciated from the foregoing description of the different embodiments of the novel athletic shoes that several changes and modifications may be made in the structure of the shoe which are suggested by the description and the drawings herein. Such changes and modifications are nevertheless within the scope of the present invention.