Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS20140309081 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 13/860,256
Publication date16 Oct 2014
Filing date10 Apr 2013
Priority date10 Apr 2013
Publication number13860256, 860256, US 2014/0309081 A1, US 2014/309081 A1, US 20140309081 A1, US 20140309081A1, US 2014309081 A1, US 2014309081A1, US-A1-20140309081, US-A1-2014309081, US2014/0309081A1, US2014/309081A1, US20140309081 A1, US20140309081A1, US2014309081 A1, US2014309081A1
InventorsAndrew Gavigan
Original AssigneeAndrew Gavigan
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Most fit exercise sledge hammer
US 20140309081 A1
Abstract
A sledge hammer with an elongate handle having a longitudinal axis and a flexible generally geometrically uniform removable mass affixed to the handle at a distal end thereof. The mass is secured to the handle with a bolt adapted to extend through the mass and into the distal end of the handle. The bolt is threaded and engages mating threads in the handle. A cone is disposed on the distal end of the handle between the handle and the mass to secure the mass to the handle In the best mode, the mass is a ball which may be perfectly round or have one or more flat surfaces. The ball should have some dampening properties.
Images(2)
Previous page
Next page
Claims(20)
What is claimed is:
1. A sledge hammer comprising:
an elongate handle having a longitudinal axis and
a flexible generally geometrically uniform removable mass affixed to said handle at a distal end thereof.
2. The invention of claim 1 wherein said mass is secured to said handle with a bolt adapted to extend through said mass and into the distal end of said handle.
3. The invention of claim 2 wherein said bolt is threaded and engages mating threads in said handle.
4. The invention of claim 1 further including a cone disposed on said distal end of said handle between said handle and said mass to secure said mass to said handle.
5. The invention of claim 1 wherein said mass is secured to said handle with a Velcro strap.
6. The invention of claim 1 wherein said mass is a ball.
7. The invention of claim 6 wherein said ball is round.
8. The invention of claim 6 wherein said ball is generally round with numerous flat surfaces.
9. The invention of claim 6 wherein said ball is elastic.
10. The invention of claim 9 wherein said all is rubber.
11. The invention of claim 9 wherein said ball is made of at least partially translucent material.
12. The invention of claim 11 further including a light inside said ball.
13. The invention of claim 6 further including a striking target.
14. The invention of claim 13 wherein said target includes a mechanism for registering the number and/or impact of each strike by said hammer.
15. The invention of claim 14 further including a digital readout.
16. The invention of claim 6 further including means for sensing the position of said hammer and/or said user and providing a display on a monitor.
17. The invention of claim 16 wherein said display is provided in a virtual or gaming environment.
18. The invention of claim 16 wherein said means includes a gaming platform.
19. The invention of claim 16 wherein said display includes virtual goggles.
20. An exercise sledge hammer comprising:
an elongate handle having a longitudinal axis;
a flexible generally geometrically uniform removable rubber ball affixed to said handle at a distal end thereof, said ball being generally round with numerous flat surfaces and secured to said handle with a bolt adapted to extend through said ball and into the distal end of said handle, said bolt being threaded and adapted to engage mating threads in said handle; and
a cone disposed on said distal end of said handle between said handle and said mass to secure said mass to said handle.
Description
    BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • [0001]
    1. Field of the Invention
  • [0002]
    The present invention relates to exercise apparatus. More specifically, the present invention relates to systems and techniques for exercising using sledge hammers, medicine balls and other similar apparatus.
  • [0003]
    2. Description of the Related Art
  • [0004]
    In the fitness industry, a plethora of machines and devices have been used to facilitate muscular development, body health and overall fitness. One such device is a sledge hammer. As is well-known by many with experience in the use of sledge hammers for construction, exercise and other purposes, the repetitive motion of lifting a sledge hammer works a number of muscle groups including triceps, latissimus dorsi, rectus abdominus, transverse abdominus, internal and external obliques, lateral deltoids, rear deltoids, anterior deltoids, glutes, quadriceps, and hamstrings. Supplemental benefits of using the sledge hammer include aerobic conditioning, neuromuscular facilitation, coordination and increased excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC).
  • [0005]
    Typically, a conventional sledge hammer has a wooden handle and a metallic head. The handle can range from 0.5 meters (1 ft 8 in) to a full 1 meter (3 ft 3 in) in length, depending on the mass of the head. The head mass is usually 1 to 3 kilograms (2.2 to 6.6 lb). Modern heavy duty sledgehammers come with 10 to 20 pounds (4.5 to 9.1 kg) heads.
  • [0006]
    Sledgehammers usually require two hands and a swinging motion involving the entire torso, in contrast to smaller hammers used for driving in nails. The combination of a long swinging range, and heavy head, increase the force of the resulting impact, (See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sledgehammer.)
  • [0007]
    Sledgehammers are increasingly being used as inexpensive exercise equipment; since all major upper body muscle groups need to put forth a significant amount of force when swinging a sledgehammer, it can easily be used to work muscles to failure as in resistance training.
  • [0008]
    When used for exercise, the hammer is struck against a flexible surface that safely dampens the momentum of the head. A rubber tire is often used as the hammer's target as its elasticity reduces the shock to the user's joints when used for this purpose.
  • [0009]
    Hence, conventional sledge hammers used for exercise typically require two components, a hammer and a target surface for safely receiving the impact of the hammer. This adds to the cost and limits the options of a conventional sledge hammer as an exercise solution.
  • [0010]
    In addition, most sledge hammers do not allow for the weight of the head to be changed or adjusted. Accordingly, a hammer may be too light for some users and too heavy for others.
  • [0011]
    Hence, a need remains in the art for a simple all in one low cost sledge hammer implementation for exercise purposes that enables hammer heads of different weights and sizes to be used as an all-in-one solution without the need for supplemental equipment.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • [0012]
    The need in the art is addressed by the sledge hammer of the present invention. The inventive hammer includes an elongate handle having a longitudinal axis and a flexible generally geometrically uniform removable mass affixed to the handle at a distal end thereof.
  • [0013]
    In the illustrative embodiment, the mass is secured to the handle with a bolt adapted to extend through the mass and into the distal end of the handle. The bolt is threaded and engages mating threads in the handle. Preferably, a cone is disposed on the distal end of the handle between the handle and the mass to secure the mass to the handle. As an alternative, the mass may be secured to the handle with a Velcro strap.
  • [0014]
    In the best mode, the mass is a ball which may be perfectly round or have one or more flat surfaces. The ball should have some dampening properties and may be elastic is as well. Rubber would be an ideal material for the construction of the ball. The ball may be at least partially translucent. If so, a light may be mounted inside the ball.
  • [0015]
    A striking target may be used. The target may be a simple surface or object. In the alternative, the striking target may include an electronic sensor for measuring the number and strength of each hammer strike and provide a digital readout with respect thereto.
  • [0016]
    In addition, a camera or radio frequency (RF) ID tag may be used to sense the position of the hammer and provide a display on a monitor with respect to the position thereof. As an alternative, the display may be implemented with virtual goggles. The display may be implemented in the context of a virtual or gaming environment allowing the user to easily visualize the exercise session m a realistic or fantasy context.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • [0017]
    FIG. 1 is a side view of an illustrative embodiment of the sledge hammer of the present invention.
  • [0018]
    FIG. 2 is a simplified side view of an illustrative embodiment of an electronic striking target in accordance with an alternative embodiment of the present invention.
  • DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
  • [0019]
    Illustrative embodiments and exemplary applications will now be described with reference to the accompanying drawings to disclose the advantageous teachings of the present invention.
  • [0020]
    While the present invention is described herein with reference to illustrative embodiments for particular applications, it should be understood that the invention is not limited thereto. Those having ordinary skill in the art and access to the teachings provided herein will recognize additional modifications, applications, and embodiments within the scope thereof and additional fields in which the present invention would be of significant utility.
  • [0021]
    FIG. 1 is a side view of an illustrative embodiment of the sledge hammer of the present invention. The inventive hammer 10 includes an elongate handle 12 having a longitudinal axis and a flexible generally geometrically uniform removable mass 14 affixed to the handle 12 at a distal end thereof. In the best mode, the handle 12 is fiberglass. However, wood, plastic, metal and other suitably stiff materials may be suitable. In any case, in the illustrative embodiment, the handle 12 is approximately three (3) feet (less than one (1) meter) in length and approximately 1.5 inches in diameter. A grip 13 is included at the proximal end of the handle 12. The grip 13 may be implemented with grooves cut into the handle or with tape wrapped around the handle 12.
  • [0022]
    In the best mode, the mass 14 is a ball which may be perfectly round or have one or more flat surfaces. The ball 14 should have some dampening properties and may be elastic as well. Rubber would be an ideal material for the construction of the ball however the present invention is not limited thereto.
  • [0023]
    In the illustrative embodiment, the ball 14 is secured to the handle with a bolt 16 adapted to extend through the ball 14 and into the distal end of the handle 12. (As an alternative, the ball 14 may be secured to the handle 12 with a Velcro strap (not shown)).
  • [0024]
    The bolt 16, which may be steel, aluminum, plastic. or other suitable material, is threaded and engages mating threads in the handle 12 aligned around the longitudinal axis thereof. In the best mode, the bolt head 22 is flat and has a cutout not shown to receive a hex key or Allen wrench, or other suitable tool, to effect tightening or removal thereof. The ball has a conical recess 24 to effect a flush mounting of the bolt in the mass 14. The threaded bolt mounting arrangement allows for an easy interchangeability of the ball 14 allowing the user to readily to change the ball to select a lighter or heavier weight. Hence, the ball can be as light as 6 pounds and as heavy as 15 pounds.
  • [0025]
    The ball 14 may be at least partially translucent. If so, a light (not shown) may be mounted inside the ball. Electronics may be included inside the ball (i.e., piezoelectric transducer, battery, switch etc.) to cause the light to activate on impact for a pleasing visual effect when in use. The circuit could be set to cause the ball to glow brighter or in a different color depending on the number or intensity of the impact. This could add a level of motivation for the user to meet or exceed a threshold or workout goal.
  • [0026]
    As shown in FIG. 1, a cone 20 is disposed on the distal end of the handle 12 between the handle 12 and the ball 14 to secure the ball 14 to the handle. The cone 20 is approximately six inches in length. The cone 20 has a diameter at the proximal end thereof that is slightly greater than the diameter of the handle 12 so that it fits over the distal end 18 of the handle 12. The distal end of the cone 20 has a diameter of approximately six (6) inches to receive and retain the ball 14.
  • [0027]
    In the best mode, the optional battery, electronics, etc., discussed above, are disposed within the cone 20 and the light, if an mounted within the ball is a length of fiber optic that is illuminated by a lamp in the cone, not shown. In this case, in the best mode, the optical fiber light is disposed on or just below the surface of the ball, permitting illumination with ball materials that are not translucent. Metal contacts may be disposed on the surface of the ball connected to a lamp disposed within the ball and adapted to engage corresponding contacts in the cone to effect electrical connection to the circuitry therein in the event the optional display is implemented. Other electronic features could be included as well such as an audio capability, motion sensing, wireless connectivity, etc.
  • [0028]
    In use, the hammer 10 is repeated lifted and slammed onto a suitable surface or target. The target may be a simple surface or object.
  • [0029]
    FIG. 2 is a simplified side view of an illustrative embodiment of an electronic striking target in accordance with an alternative embodiment of the present invention. In this embodiment, an optional electronic striking target 30 is added. The striking target 30 includes an electronic sensor 34 mounted on a base 36 for measuring the number and strength of each hammer strike and provide a digital readout with respect thereto. The sensor is exaggerated in size and in practice should be flush with the base surface. The readout is effected via display 38 mounted in the base 36. Circuitry may be included in the base 36 or the cone 20 to display beats per minute, total beats, calories burned, etc. on the base unit. Ideally, the sensor, circuitry and display are all embodied in a mat mounted parallel to the floor.
  • [0030]
    Thus, the present mention has been described herein with reference to a particular embodiment for a particular application. Those having ordinary skill in the art and access to the present teachings will recognize additional modifications, applications and embodiments within the scope thereof. For example, a camera or radio frequency (RF) ID tag (not shown) may be used to sense the position of the hammer and provide a display on a monitor with respect to the position thereof. As an alternative, the display may be implemented with virtual goggles. The display may be implemented in the context of a virtual or gaming environment allowing the user to easily visualize the exercise session in a realistic or fantasy context.
  • [0031]
    It is therefore intended by the appended claims to cover any and all such applications, modifications and embodiments within the scope of the present invention.
  • [0032]
    Accordingly,
Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2225151 *16 Sep 193917 Dec 1940Edward J BorbaIlluminated baton
US2935321 *26 May 19543 May 1960Rudolf LhotkaBall club
US4302008 *5 Dec 197924 Nov 1981Lard Charles WDevice for improving physical fitness
US4534557 *25 May 198313 Aug 1985Bigelow Stephen LReaction time and applied force feedback
US5026064 *6 Feb 198925 Jun 1991Novosel John MGolf club swing training device
US5138535 *22 Aug 199011 Aug 1992Aragon Jr William GInfant toy having impact-responsive light generating means
US5265871 *17 Feb 199330 Nov 1993Hanley Walter EBaseball glove conditioning tool and method
US5868578 *20 Sep 19969 Feb 1999Baum; Charles S.Sports analysis and testing system
US5913727 *13 Jun 199722 Jun 1999Ahdoot; NedInteractive movement and contact simulation game
US6132345 *28 Sep 199917 Oct 2000Beierschmitt; Karen TorpeyLighted weight
US6138879 *20 Aug 199831 Oct 2000Truckee Winter Sports, Inc.Mallet tool and method for creating proper pocket formation in athletic ball catching gloves
US7215082 *27 Jun 20038 May 2007Matsushita Electric Industrial Co, Ltd.Electrodeless self-ballasted fluorescent lamp and electrodeless discharge lamp operating apparatus
US7946960 *22 Feb 200724 May 2011Smartsports, Inc.System and method for predicting athletic ability
US7959528 *16 Apr 200914 Jun 2011Hondo Sports Training, LLCBaseball batting strength training aid
US20020165070 *16 May 20017 Nov 2002Pullaro Terry J.Sports training and conditioning device
US20070268684 *2 May 200722 Nov 2007Shyi-Yau ChangFlashlight Having Bat Configuration
US20090221388 *28 Feb 20083 Sep 2009Giannetti William BFeedback-providing sporting goods item
US20100204020 *25 Jan 201012 Aug 2010Thomas Amelia NExercise Device
US20100302142 *16 Aug 20102 Dec 2010French Barry JSystem and method for tracking and assessing movement skills in multidimensional space
US20110009241 *9 Apr 201013 Jan 2011Sovoz, Inc.Virtual locomotion controller apparatus and methods
US20110152043 *23 Jun 201023 Jun 2011Clemons Robert LHammer Motion Exercise Device
US20120149539 *14 Dec 201014 Jun 2012David Louis QuaderStrength Training Apparatus
US20120224354 *16 May 20126 Sep 2012Life+Gear, Inc.Multipurpose lighting device with electronic glow stick
US20130040767 *10 Aug 201214 Feb 2013Christopher GillIlluminated game-playing apparatuses and games
US20140213422 *14 Mar 201331 Jul 2014Onnit Labs, LlcReconfigurable weighted club training device with internal cavity
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US20150148202 *20 Nov 201428 May 2015Hank Boys, LLCExercise Device