Spring Biased Ski Exercise Mounted On Adjustable Inclined Slope
Patent US3591172A filed on October 3, 1968
Issued: July 6, 1971
2.5 years to issue
Inventor: Franz Hude
US Classification: A63B69/18
This patent is a device used to imitate the movement performed when skiing. It consists of ski replicating members attached to a base that remains stationary. The rear ends of the skis pivot side to side to mimic the motions done while skiing. There are springs that attach the front of the skis to each other to provide resistance. There are also springs that connect the rear of the skis members to the rear of the base. A waistband is included in the device to give the user security and balance. The user can adjust the angles of the skis as well as the resistance applied. The device is meant to replicate the forces applied to a skier when executing different skiing drills. The user is required to adopt proper skiing positions and therefore the appropriate muscles, including the legs, hips, and ankles, are trained correctly when they use this device.
Figure 1: The user stands on the skis facing the narrow end of the base.
Someone who is interested in skiing both competitively and recreationally may be interested in using this technology. I think that if someone has never skied before and is nervous to get on a slope, this device might give them the confidence they need to get started. Older people who have never skied before and are self-conscious because they would be surrounded by other skiers who maybe started at a younger age may find this device helpful. It would also benefit professional skiers in the off season to prepare themselves and their muscles. Considering the device can be used anywhere on a flat surface, snow is not needed for someone to train in skiing. It may even be beneficial for coaches to be able to critique and give pointers to skiers while they are on the device after watching them practice.
The technology of this device includes springs, slider bars, and low friction material. The base also consists of several support pins and sockets to ensure the proper support of the apparatus, the correct amount of pivoting, and rotation. The springs that attach the front ends of the skis together provide the resistance necessary to allow the skis to rotate away from one another. The springs that connect the rear end of the skis to the back of the base provide the resistance a skier experiences when rotating about its longitudinal axis. The user can add more springs or remove them to change the resistance. The backs of the skis are attached to a bar that is elevated so the user is at a vertical angle. This incline can be adjusted by the user by sliding the slider bars forward or backwards, raising the back of the skis or lowering them. The underside of the ski members have a convex shape and are made of low friction material to easily pivot.
This device is novel in how is activates the same muscles involved in skiing as well as the movements involved. Previous devices have been designed to mimic the movement and perhaps give the user practice on balance, but they do not give the resistance that a skier would experience on the slopes. For example, Raymond E Armstrong designed a skiing simulator device that had skis on two treadmills which gave the user a chance to get a feel for the movements without fear of falling, but did not provide the challenge to the muscles that would be used.
I chose this patent because it wasn’t something I had seen before and thought it was a good idea. I personally have always wanted to ski or snowboard as it seems like a fun activity. However, I have also always been scared to fall or just be plain bad at it. I think that if I had access to this device I might feel more confident if I know the proper form I should have and my muscles were prepared for what they would feel in the actual snow. I also think that it would be a fun and different form of exercise as opposed to the boring elliptical or rowing machine.