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Publication numberUS3657827 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication date25 Apr 1972
Filing date18 May 1970
Priority date21 May 1969
Also published asDE1925793A1
Publication numberUS 3657827 A, US 3657827A, US-A-3657827, US3657827 A, US3657827A
InventorsRieker Justus
Original AssigneeRieker Justus
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Pressure distribution element for boots
US 3657827 A
Abstract
A pressure distribution element for use with a ski boot, comprising first and second webs arranged to define grooves for receiving opposite edges of the leg openings of the boot. The pressure distribution element may be made of molded plastics material, and may be used with boots which are closed by strap and lever fastenings.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Rieker 1 5] Apr. 25, 1972 [54] PRESSURE DISTRIBUTION ELEMENT FOR BOOTS [72] Inventor: Justus Rieker, Panoramastrasse 130,

Tuttlingen/Wurttemberg. Germany {22] Filed: May 18, 1970 [Ill App]. No: 38,235

[30] Foreign Application Priority Data May 21, 1969 Germany ..P 19 25 793.3

521 U.S. C1 ..36/50, 36/25 AL [51] Int. Cl. ..A43b 23/00 [58] Field ofSearch ..24/68, l63;36/50,2.5 AL

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS Werner etal ..36/2.5 AL

Wernmark ..36/50 Drago ..36/2.5 AL

Primary ExaminerPatrick D. Lawson Attorney-George F. Dvorak, Stephen T. Skrydlak and Marden S. Gordon 7 [57] ABSTRACT A pressure distribution element for use with a ski boot, comprising first and second webs arranged to define grooves for receiving opposite edges of the leg openings of the boot. The pressure distribution element may be made of molded plastics material, and may be used with boots which are closed by strap and lever fastenings.

8 Claims, 3 Drawing Figures PRESSURE DISTRIBUTION ELEMENT FOR BOOTS The present invention relates to a pressure distribution element for boots such as ski boots, and to boots provided with such a pressure distribution element.

In boots which are intended to be closed particularly firmly about the leg of a wearer, substantial pressures are exerted on the wearer's leg in the region of those portions of the leg of the boot which are drawn together for the purpose of closing. In laced boots these pressures occur in the region of the eyelets and at the edges of the boot leg opening which are spaced apart so as to be adaptable to different leg dimensions in boots of one and the same size. Particularly in ski boots, where the support given to the leg should be firmly but variably adjustable in accordance with the kind of skiing practiced, lever type clasps with adjustable spacing are frequently used. The leg portions are formed so that they overlap downwardly in the closed condition, the edge region of the inside flap thus exerting an enhanced pressure on the leg. Furthermore, areas of increased pressure occur in the direction of traction of the lever type clasp fasteners.

Particularly unfavorable pressure conditions occur in the region of the tibia, where one of the leg portions of the boot extends into two straps where the associated Clasps engage. The firm fit at the shinbone, which is particularly necessary for good guidance of the skis, results in a particularly high pres sure loading in the region of the straps, which can lead to constriction of the blood circulation if the boot is closed too tightly. A good fit in the shinbone region can be prevented if the anterior shinbone region of the leg does not find any supporting surface to provide similar surface pressure.

Efforts have been made to absorb the irksome and painful pressures by specially thick cushioning of the flaps or tongues of boots. The cushions, however, which most often consist of foam material, can only spread the pressures arising over an insignificantly larger region of the leg. Thus, a satisfactory reduction of the zones of increased pressure cannot be attained in this way.

According to the present invention there is provided a pressure distribution element for use in closing the leg opening of a boot, said element comprising a first web having a first surface which is shaped to conform to a portion of a human leg which in use of such boot will receive pressure from said surface and a second web extending from the opposite surface of said first web, said second web being arranged to pass between the opposite edge regions of the leg opening of such boot when closed and serving to locate such opposite edge regions with respect to each other. 7

The invention further provides a boot in combination with such a pressure distribution element.

The first web absorbs the pressures derived from the edges of the boot leg portions, and because of its stiffness distributes them approximately equally over an area of the leg corresponding to the area of the surface of the first web disposed towards the leg of the wearer.

Opposite edge regions of the leg of the boot which face each other and, in the closed condition of the boot are in spaced relationship adapted to receive the first web of the pressure distribution element may be provided with overlapping boot leg portions or with boot leg portions which are provided with straps. By appropriately lengthening the pressure distribution element beyond the width of the straps or of the usual high pressure areas it is possible in the same way to distribute the pressure resulting from the tractive force of the lever type clasp fasteners over larger areas of the leg, and thus to reduce the value of the pressure exerted on the leg of a wearer. The length of one pressure distribution element may extend over a plurality of strap widths.

The pressure distribution element is preferably removably attached to the boot at one of the boot leg portions or at the exterior surface of the flap of the boot, by a detachable fixing device such as one or more press studs or a burr type fastener. Thus it is possible to fit pressure distribution elements of various sizes, differing in particular as to the width of the first web,

for different leg dimensions to boots of one and the same size. Expert advice, given when buying a boot, can determine a particular size of pressure distribution element which will ensure the correct firmness of fit of the leg of the boot about the leg of the wearer upon abutment of the edge regions of the leg of the boot and the longitudinal edges of the second web. It is of particular advantage that the force exerted on the boot leg portions adjacent the pressure distribution element be selected to exceed slightly that which would be necessary for attainment of a firm closure. Any excess force is, because of the lateral support of the boot leg portions by the second web, not communicated to the leg of the wearer, so that too tight and harmful constriction of the leg is prevented. On the other hand, stretching of the boot leg in use is compensated by a slight excess force, so that a constantly firm fit of the boot leg about the leg of the wearer results in the vicinity of the pressure distribution element. For supporting the boot leg edges the outer surface of the second web is preferably provided with lateral edges externally overlapping the boot leg edges. Because of the great importance, in skiing, of a faultless fit of the boot leg about the tibial region of the leg of the wearer, the use of a pressure distribution element of the invention is especially advantageous in the shin region of the boot. The pressure distribution element should be of such a length that is passes under the two straps disposed in the shin region, and thus extends substantially the full height of the vertical portion of the leg of the boot. The fit of the leg of the boot in the tibial region of the leg of the wearer can be made so flush, by means of a pressure distribution element of the invention, that a substantially equal pressure exists all over the area over which pressure is exerted on the shinbone.

Of course, one or more pressure distribution elements can be provided to extend over a section of, or over the entire length of, the leg opening of the boot. When a pressure distribution element of the invention is used, the cushioning of the flap of the boot can be of thin construction. The only remaining function of the cushioning is to take up slight deformations arising from tensioning of the tendon and the like, during movement of the foot of the wearer.

The pressure distribution element should be of substantially rigid construction, but the edge regions of the first web may be somewhat deformable for complete adaptation to the area of the leg of the boot acted upon via the flap. The pressure distributing properties of the pressure distribution element should not, however, be significantly influenced by any deformable parts of the pressure distribution element.

In order that the invention may be more readily understood, the following description is given merely by way of example with reference to the accompanying drawing, in which:

FIG. 1 shows a view in perspective of one embodiment of the pressure distribution element of the invention;

FIG. 2 shows a view, in perspective, of a ski boot equipped with the pressure distribution element of FIG. I in the tibial region of the leg opening of the boot; and

FIG. 3 shows part of a section line Ill-III of FIG. 2.

FIG. 1 shows a pressure distribution element having a first web 2 and a second web 1 molded onto one of the faces of the first web 2, one of the fastening elements 4 of a burr type fastener 4, 5 being fixed to the opposite surface 3 of the first web 2 facing the interior of the boot. The fastening element 4 extends in the form of a strip over the central area of the surface 3, in the longitudinal direction of the pressure distribution element. Laterally projecting edges 6 are formed on the second web 1; the edges 6, together with portions 7 of the first web 2 facing away from the leg, forming grooves 8 in the second web 1.

The pressure distribution element may be made of differing configurations dependent on whereabouts it is fitted into the leg opening the of the boot. However, the surface facing the leg should substantially conform to the shape of the adjacent leg region.

Several pressure distribution elements may be inserted into various regions of the leg opening of the boot. Apart from the different shapes determined by the position of fitting in the boot, a range of pressure distribution elements of diverse sizes for adaption to various leg dimensions in boots of one and the same size are available for any region of the leg opening of the boot. These pressure distribution elements differ in particular as to the width of the second web 1, so that for different leg dimensions the most favorable closing tension about theleg may always be achieved by selecting the correct pressure distribution element. The pressure distribution element is detachably fixed to the boot, so as to make possible such adaptation to any particular leg dimension by interchanging the pressure distribution elements.

FIG. 2 illustrates a pressure distribution element fitted in the tibial region of the closure area of a ski boot, the boot having leg portions 9 and 10 which have edge regions 11 and 12 at the leg opening which edge regions are spaced from and located opposite each other in the closed condition of the boot and underlapped by a flap 13. The ski boot can be equipped with one or more devices for removable attachment of one or more pressure distribution elements. As illustrated, the flap 13 is on its outward side provided with one element of a burr fastener 4, 5, the cooperating element 4 of which is mounted on the surface 3 of the pressure distribution element 1, 2, which surface 3 faces the interior of the boot in the tibial region of the closure area, as can be seen from the partial section shown in FIG. 3.

For the purpose of closing the leg opening of the ski boot illustrated in FIGS. 2 and 3, the boot is provided with two straps l4 and 15 in the tibial region. One end of each strap is attached to the leg portion 9 where these ends converge, while the other two ends engage lever type clasps l6 and 17. A firm fit of the ski boot in the tibial region of the leg is essential for good guidance of the skis. The straps 14 and 15 are, therefore, very strongly tightened so that striplike zones of elevated surface pressure are formed, which are particularly troublesome at those places where the straps are passed over the edge regions of the boot leg portions, or, if an overlapping form of boot leg is used, over the overlapping area of the boot leg portion. Hitherto it was necessary to spread the surface pressure as far as possible by an appropriately thick cushioning of the tongue. This cushioning, however, did not lead to a significant distribution of pressure, but rather to an unsatisfactory, floating hold of the foot in the boot. it was endeavoured to compensate for this by stronger tightening of the straps, but the consequences of this were either too sloppy an encircling of the leg or such tight constriction in the region of the straps that painful pressure and even strangulation of the blood circulation could occur.

The pressure of the straps is spread over a larger surface area of the leg when a pressure distribution element of the invention is used, its surface 3 being conformed to the shape of the adjacent area of the leg of the wearer so that the pressure is diminished and firm contact of the leg with the boot is achieved in the closure area of the boot. The most favorable closure conditions may be expertly predetermined having regard to the width of the second web and the particular leg dimension, such favorable conditions being obtained when the edge regions 11 and 12 abut the grooves 8 of the second web 1. A safe measure of the tension to be used is thus available to the skier, so that both too loose and too tight encasing of the leg of the skier is prevented. Suitably the straps are pulled up a little more tightly than would be necessary for abutment of the edge regions 11 and 12 and the second web 1. As the boot leg portions 9 and mutually support each other by means of the second web 1, this excess tension is not transferred to the leg of the skier. It does, however, ensure a constantly firm fit, even when stretching and displacement of those portions of the boot which encircle the leg occur during use.

What I claim is:

1. A pressure distribution element for use in the closing of the leg opening of a boot provided with opposite edge regions and provided with a tongue portion, the pressure distribution element com rising, in combination: I

a first web avmg a first surface which 1s shaped to conform to a portion of a human leg and a second surface on the side ofthe first web opposite to the first surface;

a second web extending from the second surface of the first web and arranged to pass between the opposite edge regions of the leg opening of the boot when the boot is closed; and

a fastening element provided on said first surface of said first web for engagement with a second fastening element located on the tongue of the boot.

2. A pressure distribution element as specified in claim 1, wherein said fastening element is selected from the group comprising a burr fastening element and a press stud fastening element.

3. A boot having a leg thereof provided with opposite edge regions, a tongue provided in the boot, in combination with a pressure distribution element for use in the closing of the boot, the pressure distribution element comprising, in combination:

a first web having a first surface which is shaped to conform to a portion of a human leg and a second surface on the side of the first web opposite to the first surface;

a second web extending from the second surface of the first web and arranged to pass between the opposite edge regions of the leg opening of the boot when the boot is closed;

the tongue having an outer surface, a first fastening element provided on said first surface of said first web of said pressure distribution element, and a second fastening element provided on said outer surface of said tongue for engagement with said first fastening element.

4. A pressure distribution element as specified in claim 3, wherein said first and second fastening elements are selected from the group comprising burr fastening elements and press stud fastening elements.

5. A boot as specified in claim 3, wherein said leg of said boot includes an anterior region thereof and said opposite edge regions define a direction longitudinal thereof, and wherein the length of the pressure distribution element in said longitudinal direction when said boot is closed is substantially the full height of said anterior region.

6. A pressure distribution element for use with a boot having a leg opening formed by generally parallel boot leg sections with opposite edge regions bounding the leg opening, the pressure distribution element comprising:

a one-piece pressure distribution plate adapted to loosely fit in the leg opening of the boot between the opposed edge regions and having an inner surface and an outer surface;

the inner surface facing the interior of the boot and shaped to conform to a portion of a human leg;

the outer surface extending outwardly from the inner surface and adapted to extend loosely between the opposed edge regions of the boot so that when the boot is in the closed position the edge regions are spaced apart and abut against respective opposed sides of the outer surface and the inner surface is loosely gripped under both of the edge portions of the leg opening.

7. A pressure distribution element as specified in claim 6 wherein the pressure distribution element is constructed of a synthetic plastic material.

8. A pressure distribution element as specified in claim 6 further comprising means defining grooves on the sides of the outer surface adjacent both of the edge regions bounding the leg opening for receiving the edge regions therein when the boot is closed.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1809998 *18 Nov 192916 Jun 1931Claus G PetersonShoe construction
US3325920 *27 Apr 196420 Jun 1967Rosemount Eng Co LtdSki boot
US3362091 *13 Jun 19669 Jan 1968Superga Societa Per AzioniSeamless ski shoes and method of making same
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4510703 *17 Dec 198216 Apr 1985Harrison EiteljorgSki boot
US4534122 *1 Dec 198313 Aug 1985Macpod Enterprises Ltd.Fit and support system for sports footwear
US4638578 *16 Apr 198527 Jan 1987Eiteljorg Ii HarrisonSki boot
US4903417 *21 Jun 198827 Feb 1990Salomon, S.A.Apline ski boot having an upper partially or totally journalled on a shell base
US4928405 *6 Jun 198629 May 1990Spademan Richard GeorgeShoe dynamic fitting system
US5067258 *5 Jul 199026 Nov 1991Nordica S.P.A.Flexibility adjuster device, particularly for ski boots
US5228219 *1 Jun 199220 Jul 1993Nordica S.P.A.Waterproof device, particularly for boots
US5491910 *11 Oct 199420 Feb 1996Nordica SpaSealing device for ski boots
US617866512 Jun 199730 Jan 2001Macpod Enterprises Ltd.Fit and support system for the foot
US654315921 Mar 19968 Apr 2003The Burton CorporationSnowboard boot and binding strap
US6729048 *10 Nov 20004 May 2004Tecnica S.P.A.Footwear having a shell of injection moulded plastic
US708270123 Jan 20041 Aug 2006Vans, Inc.Footwear variable tension lacing systems
WO1997036510A1 *8 Aug 19969 Oct 1997Mark S McnaughtSnowboard boot with air bladder and shim pad
WO2005072208A2 *6 Jan 200511 Aug 2005Jared BevensFootwear variable tension lacing systems
Classifications
U.S. Classification36/50.1, 36/117.6, 36/50.5
International ClassificationA43B21/22, A43B5/04, A43B23/22, A43B23/00, A43B23/02, A43B21/00
Cooperative ClassificationA43B23/22, A43B5/0405
European ClassificationA43B5/04B, A43B23/22