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Title:
TRAVEL PILLOW
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2019/048959
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A pillow comprising a substantially U- or C-shaped main element (1) that is suitable for positioning around user's neck and an upper element (2) that is attached or is attachable to the main element. The pillow improves comfort of a user and hygiene. It has a compact foldable construction that facilitates transporting of the pillow.

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Inventors:
JEZIERSKI, Edward (Falista 88, 94-115 Lodz, 94-115, PL)
Application Number:
IB2018/056328
Publication Date:
March 14, 2019
Filing Date:
August 21, 2018
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
JEZIERSKI, Edward (Falista 88, 94-115 Lodz, 94-115, PL)
International Classes:
A47C7/38
Foreign References:
CN204950333U2016-01-13
CN106562628A2017-04-19
US7797773B12010-09-21
DE202006005501U12006-08-10
JP2003334131A2003-11-25
Other References:
None
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1. A pillow comprising a substantially U- or C-shaped main element that is suitable for

positioning around user's neck, characterized in that it further comprises an upper element that is attached or is attachable to the main element.

2. The pillow according to claim 1, characterized in that the main element and the upper

element are attached or are attachable to each other by means of any of a stitch, a velco, a zipper, buttons, press-studs, wherein the attaching means form a connection line along the main element that is substantially U- or C-shaped.

3. The pillow according to any of preceding claims, characterized in that the outer side of the main element that is below a connection place between the upper element and the main element is at least partially almost flat or very slightly convex.

4. The pillow according to any of preceding claims, characterized in that the upper element can be placed on the main element in at least two positions:

a folded position - leaning on the main element by preferably at least leaning on the external side of the main element below the attachment means between the main element and the upper element,

and in an elevated position - wherein the upper element contacts the main element approximately only along the attachment means between the upper and the main element wherein the upper element is preferably self-supporting in the upper position.

5. The pillow according to claim 4, characterized in that the upper element comprises elastic filling that enables placing the upper element on the main element in the elevated position, preferably at an angle of around 85-95°.

6. The pillow according to any of preceding claims, characterized in that the main element and/or the upper element comprise soft filling, preferably a foam, and preferably comprise a preferably removable covering, preferably made of a soft textile material like a woven fabric or a knitted fabric, terry cloth, polar fleece or any other elastic especially washable material.

7. The pillow according to any of preceding claims, characterized in that the main element and/or the upper element comprise an inflatable element, preferably comprising a valve enabling inflating and deflating the inflatable element.

8. The pillow according to claim 7, characterized in that the upper element self-supports itself in an elevated position when the inflatable element of the upper element is inflated.

9. The pillow according to any of preceding claims, characterized in that the upper element has an approximately rectangular or trapezoidal shape when it is placed on a flat surface, with preferably rounded upper edges.

10. The pillow according to any of preceding claims, characterized in that the upper element consists of segments that are approximately horizontally parallel with respect to one another, wherein each of these segments preferably comprises an elastic filling, preferably made of a foam, that enable folding of the segments with respect to one another in order to form a V-shape or an inverted V-shape.

11. The pillow according to claim 10, characterized in that the segment of the upper element that is attached or is attachable to the main element has an appropriate stiffness and an appropriate elasticity that enable pulling of the segment and placing it on the main element in a folded position, wherein one of its sides leans on the main element, preferably being at least partially leaning along or around the main element, and wherein a neighboring segment has an appropriate stiffness and an appropriate elasticity that enable its pulling and placing it on a side of the segment that is attached to the main element.

12. The pillow according to any of preceding claims, characterized in that the main element has depressions or bulges that are supposed to adapt the shape of the main element to arms and/or a head of a user and wherein the shape of the upper element is adapted to the shape of the main element.

13. Method of use of the pillow according to any of preceding claims, characterized in that the upper element is lifted from a folded position - wherein it leans on the main element, preferably being at least partially wrapped along or around the main element, into an elevated position - wherein the upper element contacts the main element approximately only along the attachment means between the upper and the main element, wherein the upper element is preferably self-supporting in the upper position.

Description:
TRAVEL PILLOW

This application claims the benefit of Polish National Application No. P.422763 which was filed on September 6, 2017, the contents of which are incorporated by reference in its entirety.

The present invention relates to a pillow supporting user's head.

There are known head supporting pillows that are supposed to be placed around user's neck that have a shape resembling letter C or letter U, also known as a horseshoe shape. Pillows of this type at least partially surround a neck with a soft thick collar and they protect user's head from tilting. They are supposed to serve especially to people that are sitting or that are in a half lying position. Pillows of this type are supposed to support a head, enabling this way a relatively comfortable sleep. They are frequently used by passengers that want to have a nap while seating in a vehicle. They are therefore frequently called travel pillows. Due to the fact that these pillows are frequently used by passengers it is important to provide comfort and compactness of such a pillow. Some of these pillows are therefore inflatable in order to take as little space as possible when a pillow in not used, e.g. during its transport.

Travel pillows currently available on the market have however also some drawbacks. One of the problematic aspects is hygiene during usage of such a pillow. Currently available travel pillows usually do not provide hygienic conditions, since they separate only user's neck from a headrest. Whereas user's head usually touches or can touch a headrest that has been used by many other passengers. There exist therefore a risk of transfer of germs, parasites, fungal spores or dirt from a headrest to a user. Another aspect of using such a pillow concerns comfort due to lack of an appropriate support of head and neck, as well as providing a feeling of coziness and at least a partial separation from the surrounding environment that facilitates falling asleep and a calm sleep. The present invention relates to a pillow supporting users head that improves comfort of using it, improves hygiene, provides a feeling of coziness and has a compact foldable construction that facilitates transporting of the pillow.

According to the invention the pillow has a bottom part, which will be further called as the main part or the main element of the pillow and an upper element, which is attached or is attachable to the main element. The main element has a bent shape resembling approximately the letter C or the letter U. The main element serves for placing of the pillow around user's neck. The upper element serves for at least partial support and separation of user's head from a headrest from the back and the left and right sides. It is preferably much thinner than the main element and preferably stiffened or padded. A user of the pillow therefore has a supported head, that is protected from falling and he or she can lean his or her head on a preferably soft and pleasant to touch fabric that additionally separates a head from a headrest of a seat. The pillow provides therefore more comfortable and hygienic use. Moreover, such a pillow, due to a soft upper part that partly surrounds user's head, can be more cozy and it separates a user from the surroundings. It facilitates therefore falling asleep and it resembles a conventional soft pillow that surrounds user's head from its back as well as from right and left sides. The main element can have an approximately circular or ellipsoidal cross-section. The side of the cross-section which is external with respect to users neck is preferably flat or only slightly curved.

The main element can have irregular shape along its circumference, having depressions or bulges that are supposed to better fit the main element to users shoulders or a head shape. If the main element on its upper side that is supposed to support user's head has such indentations or bulges, then the shape of the upper element may be adapted to these irregularities.

In order to make the pillow compact, it's main element should have longer height than width of its cross-section. So that the pillow could surround user's neck and support user's head without protruding too much towards the sides, i.e. onto user's arms. In the most preferable form, the external side of the main element forms a vertical, straight or only slightly curved surface that is preferably approximately parallel to user's neck.

The upper element can be placed on the main element in two positions: a folded position and an elevated position. In the folded position the upper element leans on the main element in order to decrease the size of the pillow and to facilitate its transport. In the folded position the upper element touches, therefore, the main element not only along the connection line between these two elements but also with one of its elongated flat sides, i.e. one of the wide flat sides of the upper element at least partially leans on a side of the main element. The side of the main element on which the upper element leans is preferably flat or almost flat. The upper element leans preferably on the vertical side of the main element, which is external with respect to user's neck and is preferably flat or almost flat i.e. its vertical cross-section forms a straight or only slightly curved line. The upper element can therefore lean on or be wrapped around a side of the main element, especially on the side of the main element that is external to user's neck and which under the connection line with the upper element is preferably approximately flat and parallel to user's neck. A user can therefore reduce the size of the pillow in order to transport it more easily by pulling the upper element outwards and downwards onto the main element. Due to the flat or almost flat shape of the side of the main element on which the upper element leans, the upper element can have a simple rectangular or trapezoidal shape and it can lean along the main element without formation of creases.

The second position of the upper element i.e. the elevated position serves for separating user's head from a headrest. A user can pull the upper element from the folded position into the elevated position preferably by an upward unfolding of the upper element, so that the upper element contacts the main element approximately only along the connection line between the upper and the main element of the pillow. Due to the shape of the upper element and its rigid, however flexible properties, the upper element should be self-supporting in the upper position. The upper element after being pulled upwardly into the upper position should therefore not fall downwards and it should form a concave surface from the side of user's head, that roughly follows the bent shape of the main element. The upper element can be shaped so that in the elevated position its vertical cross-section, at least in its middle part forms a slight predominantly vertical curve that is concave from the side of user's head. The upper element should be self-supporting in the upper position and it should not tend to fall down onto the main element. It can be lowered onto the main element into the folded position by pulling it outwards and downwards in order to lean it along an external side of the main element. In this position the upper element is preferably at least partly wrapped around the main element.

In order to facilitate placing the upper element on the main element in the folded position, the external side of the cross-section of the main element should form a straight or an almost straight line than is barely curved. Since the upper element should be self-supporting in the elevated position, it should not tend to fall neither towards the external (i.e. out of user's head), nor towards the internal (i.e. towards user's head) side of the pillow. The pillow should therefore affect user's haircut to a small extent only.

The upper element, when separated from the main element and placed on a flat surface, can have an approximately rectangular or trapezoidal shape with preferably rounded upper edges. The upper element can consist of two or more than two segments that can be folded with respect to each other into a V- or N-shape etc. In order to facilitate folding of the segments with respect to each other, each of them can have a separate padding, filling or stiffening that is not combined with a padding, filling or stiffening of a neighboring segment. By folding the upper element into a V-fold, the surface of the upper element can be reduced while increasing its thickness. The upper element can alternatively consist of segments that have other than rectangular or trapezoidal shape. The first segment of the upper element that is attached or attachable to the main element can have a shape of a curve like e.g. C-shape or U-shape in order to facilitate placing the upper element in the folded position onto the main element.

The main element as well as the upper element can be filled with a soft material like a foam, memory foam, fibers, granules or they can comprise inflatable elements that in an inflated state provide an appropriate shape and resiliency of the main element and the upper element. The upper element should have an appropriate stiffness and resiliency that prevent falling down of the upper element while it is in the elevated position. But it should be elastic enough in order to enable pulling the upper element down onto the main element.

The upper element can have an additional stiffening that can be placed behind a soft layer that is supposed to provide comfort for user's head. The filling of the upper element can consist of one or more than one elements, especially placed one above the other, looking from the side of the connection line between the upper and the main elements. The filling elements can therefore separate the upper elements into segments that can be bend one with respect to the other. The filling element or elements should be stiff enough in order to support the upper element in the elevated position and prevent it from falling down on the main element. The filling element or elements should however be elastic enough in order to allow an easy bending of the upper element or its segments from the elevated position into the folded position and back. The filling element or elements can be appropriately shaped in order to provide a curvature that support the upper element in the elevated position and provides a space for user's head. Such a curvature after pulling it outwards and downwards, from a concave shape into a convex shape, can facilitate placing the upper element onto the main element and possibly also facilitate folding the upper element into a V- shape fold or an N-shape fold etc. The filling element or elements can be made of an appropriate foam, an elastic plastic or a textile having an appropriate stiffness. In the most preferred

embodiment, the filling of the upper element is made of preferably two stripes of foam that provide appropriate softness and stiffness and enable V-like folding of the upper element and placing it onto the external more less vertical side of the main element.

The upper element can be permanently attached to the main element or it can be detachably attached to it by means of for example a zipper, buttons, Velcro, press studs or other known attaching means.

The upper element or the main element can have an additional part or protrusion, like a soft textile stripe, covering the attaching means between the upper element and the main element. It can be placed between user's neck and attaching means and protect user's neck from getting into contact with the attaching means.

The main element as well as the upper element can be covered with a removable preferably soft textile material, like a woven fabric or a knitted fabric, terry cloth, polar fleece or any other elastic especially washable material.

The travel pillow can have different sizes that are appropriate for people of different age or body composition.

The preferred embodiment of the present invention will now be described, purely by way of example, with reference to the following drawings:

Fig. 1 illustrates a perspective view of a traditional C-shaped travel pillow.

Fig. 2 illustrates a top view of a traditional C-shaped travel pillow.

Fig. 3 illustrates a perspective view of the pillow according to a preferred embodiment of the invention with the upper element (2) placed on the main element (1), wherein the upper element is in the elevated position. The dashed line (3) on the upper element (2) separates neighboring segments (2a, 2b) that were described above. It shows the approximate bending place of the upper element, around which the upper element (2) bends to form a V-shape. The upper element (2) can have a stiffening element or elements above and below the dashed bending line (3). A stripe of foam or of any other appropriate material could serve as stiffening and cushioning means that provide required softness and elasticity.

Fig. 4 illustrates a perspective view of the pillow presented on Fig. 3 with a user's head inside the pillow.

Fig. 5 illustrates a perspective view of the pillow according to the invention, with the upper element (2a, 2b) being in the folded position, wherein the upper element (2a, 2b) leans on the main element

(1) in that one of its flat sides adheres the external predominantly vertical side of the main element. The upper element is folded into an inverted V-shape.

Fig. 6 illustrates a top view of an exemplary upper element (2) of the pillow, while being separated from the main element and being placed on a flat surface. The dashed line (3) on the upper element

(2) shows an exemplary line dividing the upper element (2) into the upper segment (2a) and the bottom segment (2b). The upper element can be folded along the dashed line (3) into an inverted V- shape, as it has been illustrated on Fig. 5 or Fig. 8.

Fig. 7 and Fig. 8 illustrate the most preferable embodiment of the pillow according to the invention. In this embodiment the external side of the main element with respect to user's neck has a shape of an almost straight line, which is preferably more less vertical i.e. more less parallel to user's neck. Due to this solution, the pillow does not take much space on its external side. Moreover folding and unfolding of the pillow i.e. placing the upper element on the external side of the main element and putting it back to the elevated position is easier. Formation of creases on the upper element is prevented as it can better match the shape of the external vertical side of the main element, as it has been illustrated on Fig. 8. The upper element on Fig. 8 has been folded twice into a V-shape and aligned along the external vertical side of the main element. The dashed line on the upper element illustrated on Fig. 7 shows an exemplary bending line along which the upper segment of the upper element can be bend down with respect to the bottom segment of the upper element. Along the inflection line there can be a gap between filling elements like foam stripes that can be placed inside both of the segments.

The terms used in the present application are merely used to describe particular embodiments and are not intended to limit the present invention. The preferred embodiment of the present invention has been described purely by way of example and various modifications, additions and/or omissions can be made without departing from the scope of the invention.