Patent Title: Office Gym Exercise Kit
Patent number: US 7,137,935 B2
Patent filing date: April 20, 2004
Patent issue date: November 21, 2006
How long it took for this patent to issue: ~1.5 years
Inventor(s): Raymond Clarke, Lorri Wilson-Clarke
Assignee (if applicable):Raymond Clarke, Lorri Wilson-Clarke
U.S. classification: 482/123
How many claims: 9
The Office Gym Exercise kit is a an exercise kit that can be attached to multiple different chairs in order to provide exercises to the user. The kit comes with a flexible body that can be wrapped around the post of a chair in order to “ground” the system. In addition, it comes with an elastic band, two elastic straps, an ankle attachment, various attachable handles, and a means of latching the system to the chair. The kit is shown set up and in use in Figure 1 below. In addition to the contents of the kit, the major claims of this patent highlight the materials that each of these components contain and how to use them. For example, claim 7 explains that the strips provided are nylon and claim 6 explains that the plurality of retainers are D-rings.
I think this technology would be very applicable to all of the working citizens with desk jobs. A major issue that companies face with their employees is the health risk of sitting in a chair all day. After working at a desk job for an internship this summer, the company sent around an Ergonomics expert to analyze our posture and computer placement to make sure that our set up wasn’t causing any pain to us as we worked. In addition, they recommended that we get up and walk around ever hour or so to get moving and take a break from starting at a computer screen. This can help prevent blood clots and keep your energy up throughout the day. Therefore, this technology provides an alternative by having a kit that is attachable to your chair to provide exercise throughout the day. Employees would be able to take breaks, use different body parts for different movements, and be somewhat active throughout the day.
The exercise kit functions by attaching a flexible body to the post of a chair with elastic straps in order to provide tension to the system. Due to the flexibility of the body material, this apparatus can be applied to a multitude of chairs In addition, a back attachment is provided in order to circle around the chair and lock the provided elastic straps to the base of the chair. The elastic straps are connected to a retainer through a latching system to provide a tight grip on the chair. The retainer provides various points of attachment depending on how long they need the elastic strap to be. Therefore, the user is then able to exercise their arms, legs, and back by pulling on the straps and providing resistance to their muscles. Each of the elastic straps has a D-ring attached for easy grip and handling.
There have been similar patents in the past with this idea, however they all differ from this specific patent slightly. For example, Patent No. 5,690,594 issued in 1997 describes a similar apparatus that can be attached to a chair. However, this patent includes a foot support bar to allow users to extend their foot along the bar. In addition, wheels are mounted to the food support and the user is able to push the foot support bar away from the user and back in order to exercise. In addition, Patent No. 5,599,260 issued in 1997 covers an exercise kit that attaches a roller to the post of a chair via an elastic material. This way, the device can exercise the user by with either their foot or their arm depending on where they attach the element. Furthermore, Patent No. 6,099,445 issued in 2000 describes an exercise device that includes a rigid framed with elements that can be attached to it. The frame can be attached to the central back of a chair and allow the user to exercise their arms, legs, and neck. Therefore, although there are similar patents on the market, there are slight differences between each of them that distinguish their patents from each other.
This patent caught my eye as it is a simple idea that has yet to be implemented into any office that I have heard of. As I mentioned previously, I have experience working a desk job in which they warn you about the lack of movement throughout the day if you do not get up and walk around every now and again. This is a risk to both employees and a company who provides health insure to their employees. Therefore, I figured this kit is an interesting initiative to increase fitness motivation throughout an office environment. In addition, the components that make up this kit are not technology heavy. They are made of normal exercise equipment materials that can most likely be provided at a fairly reasonable price for companies.
Figure 1.) This image shows the kit set up to a desk chair, as described, and in use.
In the figure, it looks like the device requires an office chair that has a two piece back so that the device can slip on. Would this device also work on something like a dining room chair that doesn’t have the center back piece?
That is a very interesting point. From the design presented, it seems you need a center back piece in order to ground the attachments and help keep your alignment centered when you are doing your exercises with this patent. However, I do think that the system could be modified in order to be attached to the sides of a chair as well. However, this adjustment may require additional materials and prove to be outside of the realm of this particular patent.