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Title:
SUPPORTIVE FOOTWEAR WITH AN ADJUSTABLE MEDIAL ARCH SUPPORT
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2019/195912
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A supportive footwear for use in sports and therapeutic applications strategically integrating an adjustable medial arch support mechanism allowing to manually adjust the tension of a flexible arch support strap onto a plantar arch around the ankle. The adjustable medial arch support mechanism consists of an arrangement of the flexible arch support strap connecting to a lock system comprised of a tie located onto the footwear ankle area and a free ankle strap ending with a fastening piece. When the lock system is engaged, the tie acts as a lever by exerting a pulling tension force onto the flexible arch support strap, lifting up the plantar arch. The free ankle strap acting as a clamping collar around the ankle securing the arrangement in place. The footwear supports the feet by means of an adjustable medial arch support mechanism that promotes good proprioception in sporting and functional activities.

Inventors:
TREMBLAY, Sandra (2495 Gouin Est, Montreal, Québec H2B 1X7, H2B 1X7, CA)
Application Number:
CA2018/050446
Publication Date:
October 17, 2019
Filing Date:
April 11, 2018
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
TREMBLAY, Sandra (2495 Gouin Est, Montreal, Québec H2B 1X7, H2B 1X7, CA)
International Classes:
A43B7/14; A43B5/12; A43B7/18; A61F5/14
Foreign References:
US20170056231A12017-03-02
US20090100715A12009-04-23
US5867838A1999-02-09
JPH0584101A1993-04-06
Download PDF:
Claims:
The Embodiments of The Invention in Which an Exclusive Property or Privilege is Claimed Are Defined as Follows:

1. A supportive footwear, comprising:

a) A leading end and trailing end;

b) An outsole and an insole;

c) A lock system comprising a tie and a fastening component;

d) At least one foot support strap connecting the insole and the tie;

e) wherein the tie is secured to the rear end allowing the manual adjustment of the support strap to the desired tension onto the plantar arch area of a foot by inserting and pulling the fastening piece into the tie and securing the fastening piece in place.

2. The footwear as claimed in claim 1, wherein the said at least one foot support strap includes one strap for the plantar arch support area of the foot and a second support strap for one or more remaining parts of the foot.

3. The footwear as claimed in claim 1 and 2, wherein said support strap connects from the bottom end to said insole and on the top end to said tie.

4. The footwear as claimed in claim 1 and 3, wherein said tie consists of a perforation made on said rear end or an independent piece attached to said rear end.

5. A footwear as claimed in claim 1, 3 and 4, wherein the tie simultaneously connects said lock system with said foot support strap.

6. The footwear as claimed in claim 1, wherein said fastening component is integrated into said rear end or as an independant piece.

7. The footwear as claimed in claim 1, wherein said outsole is a partial or continuous piece.

8. The footwear as claimed in claim 1, wherein the leading end and trailing end are opened or closed on one or both ends.

Drawings

FIG. 1

FIG 2

FIG. 3

FIG. 4

FIG. 5

Description:
Suppoi tive Footwear with An Adjustable Medial Arch Support

Supportive Footwear with An Adjustable Medial Arch Support Therefor

This invention provides an improved supportive footwear, more particularly of the type called barefoot footwear.

Background of The Invention

The present invention relates to the field of footwear, more specifically a supportive footwear integrating an adjustable medial arch support mechanism for the feet used in sports that are done bare feet, such as dance, yoga, swimming, tai chi, stretching, gymnastics, Pilates, aerobics, recreational body movement, acrobatics, martial arts and the like; and also for therapeutic purposes for ailments and conditions such as pronation, supination due to flat feet, hallux valgus, plantar fasciitis, re-education of the plantar musculature, balance development, recovery from foot injuries resulting from plantar fasciitis with pain in the arch or muscle injury, as well as relief of foot pain and fatigue.

Description of the Related Art: Proper foot support and adequate proprioception feedback are essential when doing sports bare feet and in everyday life. In the US, nearly 80% of people have experienced foot problems; half of them must restrict their daily activities, whether it be exercising, walking or standing. To offset these problems, individuals are using shoe orthoses in everyday life to support and protect their feet while reducing pain.

Individuals having diverse foot ailments and conditions often experience foot pain and imbalance while doing sports bare feet as they are deprived of their shoes' support.

These conditions can inhibit the feet proprioception and decrease effective anchoring and balance in both sporting and functional activities Having proper proprioception is a central theme in barefoot sports allowing adequate ground anchoring and foot mobility, and the feet play an essential role in providing the vestibular system with the information it needs to maintain body balance.

Historically, designers have incorporated passive support systems with pre-defined levels of foot support that can be inserted or integrated into footwear that are not adjustable to one’s preference and need while lessening proprioception. Cushioning and stabilizing materials as well as independent passive foot support systems such as orthotic devices add thickness to the footwear and do not take into account the additional space occupied by the presence of an orthotic and exert compression on the foot sensory receptors of the feet inhibiting foot mobility and ground anchoring.

Typical footwear of this type are shown, for example, in the following United States of America patents:

2004/0261289 A 1 Lindsay

7,856,739 B2 Terlizzi et al.

2014,0033567 A1 Heathcote et al.

2014/0259774 A 1 Minden

2013/0104420 A1 Heathcote et al.

2006/0026740 A 1 Vargas et al. Thus, there is a need in the art for a footwear that integrates a plantar arch support that is manually adjustable as necessary where an individual can control the level of support they need, all while enhancing proprioception. There is also a need for a supportive footwear that will protect and cushion the foot. There is also a need for a supportive footwear that will not restrict or constrain the foot as the foot moves through various positions. There is also a need for a supportive footwear that enables an individual to adequately sense the floor with the bottom of the foot. There is also a need for a supportive footwear that enables the ball of the foot to stretch and expand as necessary.

It is, therefore, an outstanding object of the present invention to provide a supportive footwear with manual control foot support system offering proprioceptive retroaction that improves foot alignment and floor anchoring points for better foot posture, balance, stability and grounded practice in both sporting and functional activities.

Summary of The Invention

The primary object of the invention is to provide a supportive footwear integrating an adjustable medial arch support mechanism, which is iteratively adjustable throughout the day to suit individualized and contextual performance requirements; and allow an individual to adjust the flexible arch support strap's tension as needed for proper foot stability.

In another object of the invention is to provide a supportive footwear which integrates a flexible arch support strap designed to stimulate the nervous system, causing users to correct their posture by feedback from the proprioceptive system and by awareness of their arch's support, and to prevent from compression on the foot sensory receptors of the feet.

In another object of the invention is to provide a supportive footwear that can also be worn inside regular shoes as an orthotic device to provide arch support by any individual requiring plantar arch support and proper foot alignment.

It is another object of the invention is to provide a supportive footwear integrating an external lateral foot support band, which allow the foot not to roll outside of the shoe and cause supination.

It is another object of the invention to provide a supportive footwear that’s comprised with a hidden pocket at the ball of the foot for insertion of an optional padding insert for more comfort when the footwear is used on hard planes.

In is another object of the invention to provide a supportive footwear that is wearable either in indoor or outdoor settings.

It is another object of the invention to provide a supportive footwear that easily adjusts to the size and movement of the wearer’s feet without bunching of material and that stays put during movement.

It is another object of the invention to provide a supportive footwear that has stretchable and/or elastic underside, which allows natural foot movement and expansion to occur when w¾ight and pressure are in put in the foot without causing pressure or restriction to the feet.

It is another object of the invention to provide a supportive footwear that protect the foot from injury by allowing the foot to sense the floor beneath it.

It is another object of the invention provide a supportive footwear that is made of compressive material to increase the comfort of the individual wearing it. It is another object of the invention to provide a supportive footwear that is flexible and light, easy and quick to put on, to adjust, to remove and to carry.

The above description, as well as further objects, features and advantages of the present invention will be more fully understood with reference to the following description of some embodiments considered in conjunction with the accompanying drawings. The drawings constitute a part of this specification and include exemplary embodiments to the invention, which maybe embodied in various forms.

FIG. l is a top view of the invention.

FIG. 2 is an inner lateral side view of the invention.

FIG. 3 is and outer lateral side view of the invention

FIG. 4 is a bottom view of the invention.

FIG. 5 is an internal rear view of the invention.

Detailed Description of the Invention

In one preferred embodiment of the present invention, a supportive footwear includes a stretchable fabric structure having a leading end and a trailing end having a foot opening, and a flexible arch support strap having a triangular shape profile which bottom part is attached to the outer lateral edge inside the sole, and extends beneath the arch of the foot and loops over the opposite side over the instep of the foot in a S configuration, and attached up in it’s narrower part to a tie situated on the outer part of the ankle. The ankle strap extends to the outer side of the ankle and include a fastening piece to be inserted in the tie to manually adjust the desired tension onto the flexible arch support strap. The elastic fabric structure desirably has at least one toe opening at the leading end of the fabric. The at least one toe opening may include a first toe opening for a big toe of a foot and a second toe opening for one or more remaining toes of the foot. The outer lateral edge includes an external lateral foot support band that extends along the mid-sole area allowing the foot not to roll outside of the shoe

In another embodiment of the present invention, a supportive footwear includes 2 independent flexible arch support straps profile which are attached in their center to the mid-area inside the sole, and protruding ends extend over the instep of the foot and split in opposite way to join on each side of the ankle in an unclosed figure eight configuration before the back of the heel. Said straps alternatively end with a fastening piece to be inserted in a tie around the ankle to manually adjust the desired tension onto the flexile arch support straps.

In another embodiment of the present invention, a supportive footwear includes a flexible arch support strap configured in an X shape profile which split bottom parts is attached to the outer and inner lateral edges inside the sole and crossing beneath the mid-area of the sole and top parts straps crossing over the instep of the foot and splitting in opposite way to join on each side of the ankle in an unclosed figure eight configuration before the back of the heel. Said straps alternatively end with a fastening piece to be inserted in a tie around the ankle to manually adjust the desired tension onto the flexile arch support straps.

In another embodiment of the present invention, a supportive footwear includes a flexible arch support strap that may be made of lycra, lycra mesh, cotton lycra mesh, paper lycra, leather, leather lycra, nylon, nylon mesh, neoprene, spandex or any elastic mesh material.

In other embodiment of the present invention, a supportive footwear includes a tie that may be of any shape made of fabric, plastic, elastomer, metal, silicone, rubber or other tying means. In other embodiment of the present invention, a supportive footwear includes a fastening piece that may be of any shape made of Velcro, button, clip, laces, elastic, snap buttons or other securing means.

In other embodiment of the present invention, a supportive footwear includes an external sole on which a mechanically applied membrane with anti-slipping properties, or as an independent part made of suede (or other material non-limiting), may be applied either in part or in lull on the surface of the sole.

In another embodiment of the present invention, a supportive footwear is adapted to cover the entire foot of the wearer in the form of a footwear, where the flexible arch support strap is arranged in said S configuration, and the tie and the fastening piece may be configured as part of the shoe. In such an arrangement, the flexible arch support strap is attached inside the outer lateral side of a footwear sole and attached to the ankle structure by means of a tie and fastening piece arranged in such a way to allow to manually adjust the desired tension onto the flexible arch support strap.

In another embodiment of the present invention, a supportive footwear is adapted to cover the entire foot of the wearer in the form of a footwear, where the flexible arch support straps are arranged in said 2 independent flexible arch support straps profile, and the tie and the fastening piece may be configured as part of the shoe. In such an arrangement, the flexible arch support strap is attached in it’s center to the mid-area inside the sole, and attached to the ankle structure by means of a tie and fastening piece arranged in such a way to allow to manually adjust the desired tension onto the flexible arch support strap.

In another embodiment of the present invention, a supportive footwear is adapted to cover the entire foot of the wearer in the form of a footwear, where the flexible arch support strap arranged in said X shape profile, and the tie and the fastening piece may be configured as part of the shoe. In such an arrangement, the split bottom parts are attached to the outer and inner lateral edges inside the sole, and attached to the ankle structure by means of a tie and fastening piece arranged in such a way to allow to manually adjust the desired tension onto the arch support strap.

According to the invention, the supportive footwear may be in the fonn of a foot covering, a barefoot shoe, a barefoot sandal, a barefoot sneaker, a barefoot slipper, a gymnastic shoe, an exercise shoe, an athletic shoe or sneaker, etc. It may be used in such activities as dance, yoga, swimming, tai chi, stretching, gymnastics, Pilates, aerobics, recreational body movement, acrobatics, martial arts and the like and also for therapeutic purposes in ailments and conditions such as pronation, supination due to flat feet, hallux valgus, plantar fasciitis, re-education of the plantar musculature, balance development, recovery from foot injuries resulting from plantar fasciitis with pain in the arch or muscle injury, as well as relief of foot pain and fatigue.

More specifically, and according to a preferred embodiment, the proposed supportive footwear 100 is made of flexible material and consists of a flexible sole bottom 102, covering the ball of the foot 104 and plantar arch area of the foot 106, but not the toes 108 and the heal areas 110 of the foot, equipped with a flexible arch support strap 112, which bottom part is attached to the outer lateral edge area inside the seam alongside the trailing end 114, of the external lateral foot support band 116, extending freely along the mid-sole area 118, and continuing over the instep of the foot 120, and top ending part is secured into a tie 126 located onto the footwear 100 external ankle area. A lock system 124 comprises the tie 126 located onto the footwear 100 external ankle area, and a fastening piece 132 located onto the end of the free ankle strap ending 140. The adjustable medial arch support mechanism allowing the adjustment of the flexible plantar arch strap 112 to the desired tension onto the plantar arch area of the foot 106 consists of inserting and pulling the fastening piece 132 into the tie 126 allowing the flexible arch support strap 112 to tighten and lift up the plantar arch area of the foot 106. The fastening piece 132 is then secured in place with the lock system 124. The strap around the ankle 138 is movable inside the loop closure 128 allowing it to move freely during the adjustment process and acting as a clamping collar once the lock system 124 is fastened.

The external lateral foot support band 116 runs from the head of the 5 th metatarsal 134 and extends to the rear end of the cuboid 136. The front upper part area 130 of the footwear 100 has a toe strap passing between the big toe and the second toe 122. The flexible sole bottom 102 may have a mechanically applied membrane with anti-slipping properties, or an independent part made of suede (or other non-limiting), may be applied either in part on the ball of the foot 104 or in full on the entire flexible sole bottom 102. The interior portion (not shown) of the sole bottom area 104 may have a hidden pocket (not shown) for insertion of an optional removable padding.

Although the present invention is not limited by any particular theory of operation, it is believed that the 2-layer independent shell design is a tremendous advance over prior art that only comprise one layer that protect the foot. Thus, the present invention allows the foot to be protected, move freely and supported at the same time; the first outer layer allowing the foot to be protected and anchored and the second inner layer moving independently that integrates a flexible arch strap allowing the foot to be supported.

In addition, another great advance over prior art is the compressive effect which allows a comfort and relief from foot pain and fatigue. Thus, the present invention combines a method of assembly and a ruffling fabric technique consisting of applying high tension while sewing the elastic binding all-around the stretch fabric outer shell that confers a compressive effect when wearing the supportive footwear.

Although the invention herein has been described with reference to particular embodiments, it is to be understood that these embodiments are merely illustrative of the principles and applications of the present invention. It is therefore to be understood that numerous modifications may be made to the illustrative embodiments and that other arrangements may be devised and employed without departing from the spirit and scope of the present invention as defined by the appended claims.