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Publication numberUS3269399 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication date30 Aug 1966
Filing date3 Aug 1964
Priority date3 Aug 1964
Publication numberUS 3269399 A, US 3269399A, US-A-3269399, US3269399 A, US3269399A
InventorsAlfred A Smith
Original AssigneeAlfred A Smith
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Combined handle and hand grip for crutches
US 3269399 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Aug. 30, 19% A. A. SMITH COMBINED HANDLE AND HAND GRIP FOR CRUTCHES Filed Aug. 3, 1964 INVENTOR. 31

United States Patent 3,269,399 COMBINED HANDLE AND HAND GREP FOR CRUTCHES Aifred A. Smith, 827 7 Lankershim Blvd, North Hollywood, Calif. Filed Aug. 3, 1964, Ser. No. 386,827 4 Claims. (Cl. 135-51) This invention relates to a combined handle and hand grip for crutches.

A conventional crutch is made with a horizontally directed rigid handle which extends between the bows and which acts primarily to carry the weight of the user and which also acts to maintain the curvature of the bows.

Because it bears the downward pressure of the full weight of the user and also the constant lateral pressure of the bows, the handle is customarily formed of wood, metal or other rigid material. A softer resilient hand grip is often mounted over the rigid handle in order to provide greater comfort for the user.

It is an object of my invention to provide a novel structure in which the handle and hand grip are combined to provide a structure which is sufficiently strong to support the weight of the user and resist the pressure of the bows and which is, at the same time, sufficiently soft so that it provides even greater comfort for the user than a conventional hand grip.

It is a further object of my invention to provide a combined handle and hand grip which is contoured to fit the palm of the hand for greater security and greater comfort.

It is a related object of my invention to provide a combined handle and hand grip in which the contour of the gripped portion can be substantially altered manually by the application of pressure from the hand and fingers of the user, in order to provide a handle contour which conforms to the contour and size of the users hand and to provide a more comfortable and more secure grip for the user.

Another object of my invention is to provide a combined handle and hand grip which has the proper angularity, corresponding to the natural angularity of the hand of the user both as to the longitudinal and transverse axes of the clutch.

As a consequence of the advantages and benefits provided by my combined handle and hand grip construction, excessive tension of the wrist, hand and arm caused by their being held in an unnatural or improper position is eliminated, thus reducing fatigue and substantially aiding ambulation. Greater comfort is also provided for the hands, reducing the likelihood of callouses.

Another object of my invention is to provide such a structure which can be made and sold at no greater cost than a conventional handle and hand grip of the type now in use, thus providing greater comfort and security for the user with no additional cost.

My invention also comprises such other objects, advantages and capabilities as will later more fully appear and which are inherently possessed by my invention.

While I have shown in the accompanying drawings preferred embodiments of my invention, it should be understood that the same are susceptible of modification and change without departing from the spirit of my invention.

Referring to the drawings,

FIG. 1 is a side elevational view of a conventional form of crutch showing my combined handle and hand grip mounted thereon;

FIG. 2 is a top plan view of my combined handle and hand grip;

FIG. 3 is a side elevational view of the same;

3,269,399 Patented August 30, 1966 FIG. 4 is a longitudinal sectional view of my combined handle and hand grip in use on a conventional crutch;

FIG. 5 is a side elevational view of my combined handle and hand grip in use on a Canadian crutch;

FIG. 6 is a sectional view of the same taken on line 66 of FIG. 5.

A preferred embodiment which has been selected to illustrate my invention is adapted for use on a conventional crutch which includes a pair of vertically directed bows 10, with a handle extending transversely between the bows. The bows 10 are customarily provided with one or more sets of aligned openings for removably receiving a bolt which extends transversely through the bows 10 and longitudinally through the crutch handle. The bows 10 are curved in such a manner that the handle is constantly under lateral pressure, as it acts to hold the bows 10 apart from each other.

Instead of a conventional horizontally directed rigid handle, I provide a combined handle and hand grip which comprises a body member 11, which is preferably formed of somewhat resilient material such as cellular rubber or rubber-like material or other material having similar suitable properties. It is preferable that the composition of the body member 11 be such that it is capable of being manually compressed and deformed by the hand and fingers of the user.

The body member 11 is contoured to fit the palm of the user, being provided adjacent its front end with a pair of deep recesses 12 and 13 on its opposite sides, a recess 14 on top and a smaller recess 15 on the bottom. In use, the index finger and thumb of the user fit in the side recesses 12 and 13, while the portion of the hand between the thumb and index finger fits into the top recess 14- and the end of the index finger bends around the body member 11 and fits within the bottom recess 15.

The opposite end or back of the body member 11 is provided with lesser side recesses 16 and. 17 and top and bottom recesses 18 and 19, respectively. In use, the side of the hand opposite from the thumb fits in the top recess 18 and the side recess 16, while the little finger fits in the bottom recess 19 and opposite side recess 17.

The body member 11 is provided with a pair of protuberances 20 and 21 on its opposite sides which are disposed adjacent to the front side recesses 12 and 13 and which help to define the side recesses 12 and =13. The protuberances 20 and 21 taper gradually to the back side recesses 16 and 17.

The top of the body member 11 is provided with a lesser protuberance 22, which is adapted to fit into and provide comfort for the center of the palm of the hand of the user.

Both ends of the body member 11 are flared outwardly and terminate in right angular ends which fit against the inner surfaces of the bows.

The body member 11 is provided with a longitudinally directed bore 23, which extends at an angle from adjacent the top of the front to adjacent the bottom of the back. Mounted within the bore 23 is a hollow steel sleeve 24, which is equal in length to the body member 11 and which is sufficiently strong to withstand the pressures to which a crutch handle is customarily subjected. The sleeve 24 thus supplies the rigidity which is lacking in the body member 11, while the body member 11 provides even greater softness and'comfort for the user than a conventional handle with a hand grip mounted on it.

Extending through the sleeve 24 is an elongated bolt 25, which is somewhat smaller in diameter than the sleeve 24, so as to be loosely mounted therein. The bolt 25 is somewhat longer than the sleeve 24 and has a head 26 on one end and a wing nut 27 threadedly mounted on its opposite end. The bolt 25 extends through both of bows 10 as well as the body member l land acts to removably mount and hold the combined handle and hand grip structure in place on the crutch.

It will be noted that when my combined handle and hand grip is in place on a crutch, it extends at a different angle than a conventional horizontally directed crutch handle. Due to the angle of the bore 23, the body member 11 is slanted or angled downwardly from the back of the crutch to the front, in order to provide a gripping member which is disposed at the same angle as the hand of the user when it is disposed in its natural gripping position.

It will also be noted that the body member 11 and sleeve 24 are free to be rotated with respect to the bows 10. Since the forearm of the user is directed at an angle to the side of the crutch, the body member 11 should preferably be twisted or rotated so that the top thereof is directed toward the outside of the crutch or away from the body of the user and the bottom is disposed oppositely. This permits the arm and hand to assume and maintain a more natural position which is less fatiguing to the user of the crutch. With this twisting of the body member 11, it is possible to line up the gripping of the hand with the longitudinal axis of the arm of the user.

My invention is also capable of being used with Canadian crutches and in similar applications where a handle member is supported at only one end. Such a structure is shown in FIGS. -6 of the drawings. The body member 30 is formed in the same manner as the previously described body member 11 insofar as its characteristics and outer contour are concerned. It is provided with a bore 31 of somewhat greater diameter and slightly less angularity than the previously described bore 23. A rigid hollow or solid metal shaft 32 is mounted in the bore 31 to support the body member 30.

The body member 30 is slanted downwardly with respect to the crutch 33 to accommodate the arm and hand of the user in their more natural and comfortable positions, substantially corresponding to the natural positioning of the previously described body member 11. As in the case of a conventional crutch, the body member 30 is relatively soft and manually deformable, while the shaft 32 provides sufficient rigidity to support the weight of the user.

The sleeve 24 and shaft 32 are preferably dimensioned so that they fit tightly within their respective bores 23 and 31, so as to engage the walls thereof and be gripped by the resilience of their respective body members 11 and 30. Y

I claim:

1. A combined handle and hand grip for a crutch adapted to be mounted between the bows of the crutch comprising a body member formed of resilient material, said body member being contoured to provide a pair of deep recesses on its opposite sides and smaller recesses on its stop and bottom adjacent to the front thereof, said body member having a pair of side protuberances disposed adjacent to said side recesses and a lesser top protuberance, said body member having a longitudinally directed bore extending at an angle from adjacent the top of the front to adjacent the bottom of the back of said body member, a hollow rigid sleeve equal in length to said body member mounted in said bore so as to engage the side walls thereof, an elongated bolt extending through said sleeve and through the bows of said crutch to removably mount said combined handle and hand grip on said crutch, the front of said body member slanting substantially downwardly, said body member being rotatable with respect to said bolt so that said body member is slanted toward the inside of said crutch, said body member being sufficiently soft as to be compressible by the hands and fingers of the user so that said body member can be deformed by manual pressure to fit the particular size and contour of the hand of the user, said sleeve being sufliciently strong to prevent said body member from buckling under the weight of the user or the pressure of said bows upon said body member.

2. The structure described in claim 1, said body member being formed of cellular elastomeric material.

3. A combined handle and hand grip for a crutch adapted to be mounted between the bows of the crutch comprising a body member formed of resilient material, said body member being contoured to provide a pair of deep recesses on its opposite sides, said body member having a longitudinally directed bore extending at an angle from adjacent the top of the front to adjacent the bottom of the back of said body member, a hollow rigid sleeve equal in length to said body member mounted in said bore, an elongated fastening member extending through said sleeve and through the bows of said crutch to removably mount said combined handle and hand grip on said crutch, the front of said body member slanting substantially downwardly, said body member being rotatable with respect to said fastening member so that said body member is slanted toward the inside of said crutch, said body member being sufiiciently soft as to be compressible by the hands and fingers of the user so that said body member can be deformed by manual pressure to fit the particular size and contour of the hand of the user, said sleeve being sufficiently strong to prevent said body member from buckling under the weight of the user or the pressure of said bows upon said body member.

4. A combined handle and hand grip for a crutch adapted to be mounted between the bows of the crutch comprising a body member formed of resilient material, said body member being contoured to substantially fit the hand of the user, said body member having a longitudinally directed bore extending at an angle from adjacent the top of the front to adjacent the bottom of the back of said body member, a hollow rigid sleeve equal in length to said body member mounted in said bore, an elongated fastening member extending through said sleeve and through the bows of said crutch to removably mount said combined handle and hand grip on said crutch, the front of said body member slanting substantially downwardly, said body member being rotatable so that said body member is slanted toward the inside of said crutch, said body member being sufficiently soft as to be compressible by the hands and fingers of the user so that said body member can be deformed by manual pressure to fit the particular size and contour of the hand of the user, said sleeve being sufficiently strong to prevent said body member from buckling under the weight of the user or the pressure of said bows upon said body member.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,197,279 4/ 1940 Thorssen -51 X 2,736,330 2/1956 Wood 13551 X 2,778,370 1/1957 Chamblee 13549 3,122,774 3/ 1964 Lamb 161 10 3,174,494 3/1965 Maguire 1355l X FOREIGN PATENTS 1,112,170 11/1955 France.

HARRISON R. MOSELEY, Primary Examiner. I L. J. SANTISI, W. E. HEATON, Assistant Examiners,

Patent Citations
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US2197279 *5 Sep 193916 Apr 1940Erik H JohnsonCrutch
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US2778370 *10 Jan 195522 Jan 1957Chamblee William MKnee rest for crutch
US3122774 *8 Aug 19613 Mar 1964Lamb ThomasHandles
US3174494 *5 Jun 196123 Mar 1965Maguire Jr Roderick HArm contoured crutch
FR1112170A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3517678 *31 Dec 196830 Jun 1970Robert B GilsdorfHand grip for crutch
US3995650 *10 Sep 19757 Dec 1976Lumex, Inc.Adjustable positioned handgrip for canes, crutches, walkers and other ambulatory aids
US4136866 *29 Sep 197730 Jan 1979Bouvier Ronald OSkip rope
US4305582 *3 Mar 198015 Dec 1981Barton Owen EArticulatively segmented, elongate amusement device
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US4625743 *12 Aug 19852 Dec 1986Harker Garth LCrutch
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US4730632 *17 Apr 198615 Mar 1988Jung CorporationCane with handle featuring gripping aids
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US779778219 Jun 200621 Sep 2010Goody Products, Inc.Handle having a ribbed gel grip
US808293629 Sep 201027 Dec 2011Kineticane, LlcWalking cane
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Classifications
U.S. Classification135/72, 401/6, 16/DIG.120, 16/430
International ClassificationA61H3/02
Cooperative ClassificationY10S16/12, A61H3/02
European ClassificationA61H3/02