US20070283595A1 - X-Shaped Pillar Sole for Footwear Traction and Comfort - Google Patents

X-Shaped Pillar Sole for Footwear Traction and Comfort Download PDF

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Publication number
US20070283595A1
US20070283595A1 US11/309,453 US30945306A US2007283595A1 US 20070283595 A1 US20070283595 A1 US 20070283595A1 US 30945306 A US30945306 A US 30945306A US 2007283595 A1 US2007283595 A1 US 2007283595A1
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United States
Prior art keywords
sole
shaped pillars
shaped
pillars
footwear
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Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Abandoned
Application number
US11/309,453
Inventor
Donald Bright
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Bright Donald A
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Publication date
Priority to US71211105P priority Critical
Application filed by Bright Donald A filed Critical Bright Donald A
Priority to US11/309,453 priority patent/US20070283595A1/en
Publication of US20070283595A1 publication Critical patent/US20070283595A1/en
Application status is Abandoned legal-status Critical

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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A43FOOTWEAR
    • A43BCHARACTERISTIC FEATURES OF FOOTWEAR; PARTS OF FOOTWEAR
    • A43B13/00Soles; Sole and heel units
    • A43B13/14Soles; Sole and heel units characterised by the constructive form
    • A43B13/22Soles made slip-preventing or wear-resisting, e.g. by impregnation or spreading a wear-resisting layer
    • A43B13/223Profiled soles
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A43FOOTWEAR
    • A43BCHARACTERISTIC FEATURES OF FOOTWEAR; PARTS OF FOOTWEAR
    • A43B13/00Soles; Sole and heel units
    • A43B13/14Soles; Sole and heel units characterised by the constructive form
    • A43B13/18Resilient soles
    • A43B13/181Resiliency achieved by the structure of the sole
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A43FOOTWEAR
    • A43BCHARACTERISTIC FEATURES OF FOOTWEAR; PARTS OF FOOTWEAR
    • A43B3/00Footwear characterised by the shape or the use
    • A43B3/0036Footwear characterised by a special shape or design
    • A43B3/0052X-shaped or cross-shaped

Abstract

A sole (10) for footwear has a plurality of x-shaped pillars (30), preferably made of rubber or other elastomer. The x-shaped pillars (30) are vertical columns in the cross-sectional shape of an “X” having a wider base towards the inside of the footwear and extending, preferable in steps, to a narrower cross-section at the walking surface. The x-shaped pillars are preferably aligned longitudinally on the sole so that the arms of the x-shaped pillar face forward, rearward and to both sides of the footwear. This longitudinal orientation is preferred because it promotes gripping the engaged surface along the vertices of the x-shaped pillar, providing enhanced traction in the longitudinal and lateral directions. One embodiment has a plurality of channels (20) or cut throughs on a frame surrounding the x-shaped pillars and extending from the base of the x-shaped pillars through the frame to permit ejection of matter engaged between the x-shaped pillars. The sloped x-shaped pillars (30) compress with the weight of a person walking and inherently eject entrained matter filling the space between the arms of x-shaped pillars.

Description

    CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION
  • This application claims the benefit of provisional application 60/712,111 filed Aug. 29, 2005, the disclosure of which is hereby incorporated by reference.
  • FIELD OF INVENTION
  • In the field of soles for footwear, a sole that enhances traction in slippery conditions and is comfortable for the user.
  • DESCRIPTION OF PRIOR ART
  • Prior art in footwear soles feature parallel rows of nubs, various grid designs, chambers and protuberances having pyramidal, inverted cone and stepped designs. None of the prior art teaches that improved comfort for therapeutic effect and enhanced traction can be achieved using a sole employing x-shaped pillars that resist slipping in the longitudinal and lateral directions.
  • Representative of prior art with parallel rows of nubs is U.S. Pat. No. 4,378,641 to Arthur S. Tarlow on Apr. 5, 1983 for a boat shoe and sole. Tarlow teaches a side wall to the ribs and the ribs having a length that meets the plane of the side wall. However, this type of prior art does not teach enhanced resistance to slippage using x-shaped pillars, as in the present invention. Tarlow does not offer benefits in resisting slippage in the lateral or sideways directions, as in the present invention. The present invention does not employ the ribs disclosed in Tarlow and is distinct in its x-shaped pillars. The present invention is further distinguished in that it teaches channels through the sidewall to permit matter to be ejected to the environment surrounding the sole.
  • Representative of the prior art grid and chamber design is U.S. Pat. No. 2,909,271 to S. A. Taylor on Sep. 24, 1956, which teaches a grid of intersecting ribs and chambers to provide gripping power and self-cleaning. The present invention does not use chambers or intersecting ribs, but rather is the opposite in that no ribs are utilized and no chambers are created because any cavity formed by x-shaped pillars is in open communication with the environment surrounding the sole.
  • While stepped protuberances are disclosed in the prior art, for example in Taylor above, none of the prior art has been found to teach or disclose an x-shaped pillar.
  • Accordingly, the present invention will serve to improve the prior art of footwear soles by employing a plurality of x-shaped pillars to provide improved comfort for therapeutic effect and enhanced traction by resisting slipping in both the forward and sideways directions.
  • BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • A sole for footwear has a plurality of x-shaped pillars, preferably made of rubber or other elastomer. The x-shaped pillars are vertical columns in the cross-sectional shape of an “X” having a wider base towards the inside of the footwear and extending, preferable in steps, to a narrower cross-section at the walking surface. In a framed embodiment, the x-shaped pillars are confined within a frame of elastomeric material around the outer edge of the shoe. Other embodiments are frameless and the x-shaped pillars extend to the edge of the sole. The frameless embodiments have an option to add screw-in, or press-in spikes, which may be metallic or non-metallic spikes. In the framed embodiment, the outer, or wear, surfaces of the frame and x-shaped pillars define an approximate plane constituting the walking surface of the sole. The preferred embodiment also has x-shaped pillars in a thicker heal segment, which constitute an added walking surface of the sole. The x-shaped pillars are preferably aligned longitudinally on the sole so that the arms of the x-shaped pillar face forward, rearward and to both sides of the footwear. This longitudinal orientation is preferred for traction because it promotes gripping the engaged surface along the vertices of the x-shaped pillar in both the longitudinal and lateral directions, especially on icy, wet, oily and greasy surfaces. The sloped x-shaped columns compress with the weight of a person walking and inherently shed or eject entrained matter filling the space between the arms of x-shaped pillars when in use on muddy, sandy or particulate surfaces. The framed embodiment has a plurality of channels or cut throughs on the frame extending from the base of the x-shaped pillars through the frame to permit ejection of matter engaged between the x-shaped pillars. The unique x-shape pillar arrangement provides comfortable cushioned footwear having improved traction on particulate and slippery surfaces.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • The figures depict examples of the invention and are not intended to be limiting as to the scope of the invention, which are defined by the claims.
  • FIG. 1 is a plan view of a front segment of a sole.
  • FIG. 2 is a perspective of a sole with a heel.
  • FIG. 3 a side view of a sole with holes and channels.
  • FIG. 4 is a perspective view a sole having a heel segment with holes.
  • FIG. 5 is a plan view showing an enlarged portion of a front segment of a sole.
  • FIG. 6 is a perspective view of a sole having fewer x-shaped pillars extending across the wear face of the sole.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION
  • The invention is a sole for footwear having a plurality of x-shaped pillars. The term footwear is used intentionally to broadly include shoes, boots, sandals, slippers and anything worn on a foot that is intended to contact the ground.
  • The x-shaped pillars are essentially columns having a cross-sectional shape of an x. These columns extend vertically from a wide base to a narrower terminus, which forms an approximate planar wear surface of the sole. In the preferred embodiment, the x-shaped pillars rise from the base in discrete steps to the terminus. This stepped configuration to the x-shaped pillars (30) is shown in perspective in two embodiments, one in FIG. 6 and one in plan view in FIG. 5.
  • In the preferred embodiment, the x-shaped pillars are made of elastomeric material that compresses under the weight of a person wearing footwear employing the sole and quickly return to the original uncompressed shape when released. It is well known that such elastomeric materials can be made to compress to varying degrees under pressure. However, aside from the fact that some level of compressibility is preferred, it is expressly intended that invention include both incompressible and compressible x-shaped pillars. For compressible x-shaped pillars, the invention includes all levels of compressibility from almost zero compressibility to the maximum achievable compressibility.
  • For the preferred embodiments, the amount compressibility in the x-shaped pillars will vary with the footwear application for which the sole is intended to be employed. For example, very little compressibility would be needed for a soccer shoe where comfort over a long period of time is of less concern and slippery hard surfaces are not usually encountered. FIG. 6 shows such an embodiment having fewer x-shaped pillars (30) extending across the sole (10). This embodiment is intended to bite into the surface and grip in all directions and would be suitable for similar applications employed on grass, dirt, mud, snow and ice.
  • On the other hand, where the footwear application is for lengthy use during the day when comfort is a higher priority or when the expected use is on slippery, hard surfaces, then, greater compressibility of the x-shaped pillars would perform remarkably better to add comfort and traction. FIG. 1 through FIG. 5 show embodiments for this kind of application. Restaurant service personnel are typical of those who would be standing on the sole for long periods and would benefit from a therapeutic effect of greater compressibility. Slippery, hard surfaces that are wet or oily, for example, may be also found in restaurants and in boating applications.
  • The quantity of the x-shaped pillars on a given sole is also a function of the footwear application for which the sole will be used. Relatively few x-shaped pillars, as in FIG. 5, would better serve the soccer application. Numerous x-shaped pillars, as in FIG. 2, would better serve the restaurant application. Generally, the larger the profile of the x-shaped pillar, the harder the composition of elastomeric material in the preferred embodiments.
  • The sole may provide for the use of a regular heel, that is, an attachment heel made of solid material. Alternatively, in the preferred embodiments, the sole is an integral unit with both a heel segment and a front segment having x-shaped pillars.
  • FIG. 1 is close-up view of the wear surface of a sole (10). The terminus or wear surface of the x-shaped pillars (30) are shown with a white x. The x-shaped pillars are aligned so that arms of the x-shaped pillar face approximately forward and rearward of a longitudinal axis of the footwear. This orientation of the x-shaped pillars is preferred because it enhances the gripping power or traction of the sole when in use. The arms of the x-shaped pillars tend to direct the surface being walked upon toward the vertices of the x, which enhance griping power of the sole in the longitudinal and lateral directions. Slipping in two dimensions is, thus, inhibited by the x-shaped pillars.
  • FIG. 2 and FIG. 6 are examples of integral soles (10) that might be employed in the above restaurant and soccer examples, respectively. FIG. 2 shows numerous x-shaped pillars (30) covering the wear surface of the sole, including both the heel segment and the front section. As can be seen in FIG. 2, the heel segment is typically thicker than the front segment of the sole.
  • FIG. 6 shows significantly fewer x-shaped pillars extending across the wear face of the sole, which in this case extends across the entire width of the sole. FIG. 6 shows a sole with six circular recesses, each such recess (60) being centered on an x-shaped pillar Each such recess (60) has a connection to receive a screw-in, or press-in spike.
  • When the sole is viewed in an upside down perspective, as generally shown in FIG. 2, the x-shaped pillars are broad at their base and narrower at their tops; the tops forming the wear face of the sole. The x-shaped pillars are not connected to each other except at the base, which forms the platform from which all the x-shaped pillars extend. Thus, the plurality of x-shaped pillars may also be described as forming interconnected funnel-like cavities between the pillars such that when the pillars compress during use, they tend to squeeze out any material occupying the cavities.
  • FIG. 4 is a perspective view an integral sole having a heel segment with a plurality of holes (40) extending from the top of the sole to a point above a plane defined by the bases of the x-shaped pillars in the heal segment. The holes (40) provide added flexure to the heel segment during use and thus enhances comfort of the user.
  • FIG. 5 shows a close-up of a portion of a front segment of a sole (10) having a frame (55) of elastomeric material surrounding the sole. The frame has an end at the approximate planar wear surface. The frame (55) is extended inwardly comprising a depressed transitional portion (50) containing shortened x-shaped pillars that have a terminus at the wear surface. The x-shaped pillars (30) within the area surrounded by the transitional portion (50) rise from the wide base in three steps to the narrower terminus. In this example, the x-shaped pillars atop the transitional portion (50) have a height equal to the top step in the three-step x-shaped pillar (30). The transitional portion (50), if used, provides added support and minumizes deflection of the x-shaped pillars. A preferred embodiment of the sole for use on sandals and beach thongs would not utilize a transitional portion (50).
  • The frame (55) is shaped with a plurality of channels (20) extending from the base of the x-shaped pillars through the frame to permit ejection of matter engaged between the x-shaped pillars. Thus, when a person compresses the x-shaped pillars any matter within the funnel-like cavities is squeezed and tends to eject from the sole through the channels (20).
  • FIG. 3 shows a side view of a sole (10) with a plurality of holes (40) and channels (20).
  • The above-described embodiments including the drawings are examples of the invention and merely provide illustrations of the invention. Other embodiments will be obvious to those skilled in the art. Thus, the scope of the invention is determined by the appended claims and their legal equivalents rather than by the examples given.

Claims (11)

1. A sole for footwear comprising, a plurality of x-shaped pillars that extend from a wide base to a narrower terminus wherein said terminus forms an approximate planar wear surface.
2. The sole of claim 1 wherein the x-shaped pillars are aligned so that arms of the x-shaped pillar face approximately forward and rearward of a longitudinal axis of the footwear.
3. The sole of claim 1 further comprising a frame of elastomeric material surrounding the sole having an end at the approximate planar wear surface.
4. The sole of claim 3 wherein the frame is shaped with a plurality of channels extending from the base of the x-shaped pillars through the frame to permit ejection of matter engaged between the x-shaped pillars.
5. The sole of claim 3 wherein the frame is extended inwardly comprising a depressed transitional portion containing shortened x-shaped pillars that have a terminus at the wear surface.
6. The sole of claim 1 further comprising one or more recesses, each centered on a x-shaped pillars and each recess having a connection to receive a spike.
7. The sole of claim 1 further comprising an integral heel segment having x-shaped pillars wherein the thickness of the heal segment is greater than the thickness of a front segment of the sole.
8. The sole of claim 7 wherein the integral rear heal segment has a plurality of holes extending from the top of the sole to a point above a plane defined by the bases of the x-shaped pillars in the rear heal segment.
9. The sole of claim 1 further comprising an attachment heel.
10. The sole of claim 1 wherein the x-shaped pillars rise from the base in steps to the terminus.
11. The sole of claim 1 wherein the x-shaped pillars are made of elastomeric materials.
US11/309,453 2005-08-29 2006-08-09 X-Shaped Pillar Sole for Footwear Traction and Comfort Abandoned US20070283595A1 (en)

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US71211105P true 2005-08-29 2005-08-29
US11/309,453 US20070283595A1 (en) 2005-08-29 2006-08-09 X-Shaped Pillar Sole for Footwear Traction and Comfort

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US11/309,453 US20070283595A1 (en) 2005-08-29 2006-08-09 X-Shaped Pillar Sole for Footwear Traction and Comfort

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Cited By (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
USD616187S1 (en) * 2009-08-28 2010-05-25 Ku Do Moon Slip resistant sole
US20120060394A1 (en) * 2009-05-21 2012-03-15 Hyuk Soo Kwon Human body-balancing footwear capable of preventing knock-knees and providing cushioning suitable for the weight of wearer
US20130283641A1 (en) * 2012-04-27 2013-10-31 Nike, Inc. Sole Structure and Article of Footwear Including Same
GB2503945A (en) * 2011-08-05 2014-01-15 Edward Blackett Sole for footwear including plurality of spaced flexible resilient cleats
WO2015038321A1 (en) * 2013-09-12 2015-03-19 Nike Innovate C.V. Article of footwear comprising outsole with stepped projections
USD767265S1 (en) * 2014-10-14 2016-09-27 B&B Technologies Lp Multicomponent shock mitigation outsole

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US582194A (en) * 1897-05-11 Pneumatic tire
US933110A (en) * 1907-07-08 1909-09-07 Charles L Rempes Tire-tread.
US1594056A (en) * 1926-02-26 1926-07-27 Wright & Ditsonvictor Co Football shoe
US2909271A (en) * 1956-09-24 1959-10-20 Goodyear Tire & Rubber Conveyor belt
US4012855A (en) * 1975-10-28 1977-03-22 Denys Gardner Anti-skid footwear
US4069601A (en) * 1976-12-23 1978-01-24 Young Californian Shoes, Inc. Thong footwear
US4098011A (en) * 1977-04-27 1978-07-04 Brs, Inc. Cleated sole for athletic shoe
US4194310A (en) * 1978-10-30 1980-03-25 Brs, Inc. Athletic shoe for artificial turf with molded cleats on the sides thereof
US4223456A (en) * 1979-01-05 1980-09-23 Jacques Cohen Shoe sole assembly
US4255874A (en) * 1979-07-18 1981-03-17 Vibram S.P.A. Lug sole for footwear
US4378641A (en) * 1981-02-06 1983-04-05 Tarlow Arthur S Boat shoe
US4426926A (en) * 1981-09-15 1984-01-24 Deere & Company Belt for round baler
US4521979A (en) * 1984-03-01 1985-06-11 Blaser Anton J Shock absorbing shoe sole
USD281032S (en) * 1983-05-10 1985-10-22 Quabaug Rubber Company Shoe sole
US4559724A (en) * 1983-11-08 1985-12-24 Nike, Inc. Track shoe with a improved sole
US6266896B1 (en) * 2000-03-20 2001-07-31 Ding Sheug Industry Co., Ltd. Shoe sole of lightweight
US20020088140A1 (en) * 1970-03-10 2002-07-11 Jui-Te Wang Water drainable sole for footwear
US6691432B2 (en) * 2001-01-12 2004-02-17 Salomon S.A. Intermediary sole and shoe equipped with such a sole
USD487331S1 (en) * 2003-05-15 2004-03-09 Wolverine World Wide, Inc. Footwear sole
US6748675B2 (en) * 2001-06-07 2004-06-15 Mizuno Corporation Sole assembly for sports shoe
USD504756S1 (en) * 2004-03-26 2005-05-10 Global Brand Marketing Inc. Footwear outsole

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* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
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US582194A (en) * 1897-05-11 Pneumatic tire
US933110A (en) * 1907-07-08 1909-09-07 Charles L Rempes Tire-tread.
US1594056A (en) * 1926-02-26 1926-07-27 Wright & Ditsonvictor Co Football shoe
US2909271A (en) * 1956-09-24 1959-10-20 Goodyear Tire & Rubber Conveyor belt
US20020088140A1 (en) * 1970-03-10 2002-07-11 Jui-Te Wang Water drainable sole for footwear
US4012855A (en) * 1975-10-28 1977-03-22 Denys Gardner Anti-skid footwear
US4069601A (en) * 1976-12-23 1978-01-24 Young Californian Shoes, Inc. Thong footwear
US4098011A (en) * 1977-04-27 1978-07-04 Brs, Inc. Cleated sole for athletic shoe
US4194310A (en) * 1978-10-30 1980-03-25 Brs, Inc. Athletic shoe for artificial turf with molded cleats on the sides thereof
US4223456A (en) * 1979-01-05 1980-09-23 Jacques Cohen Shoe sole assembly
US4255874A (en) * 1979-07-18 1981-03-17 Vibram S.P.A. Lug sole for footwear
US4378641A (en) * 1981-02-06 1983-04-05 Tarlow Arthur S Boat shoe
US4426926A (en) * 1981-09-15 1984-01-24 Deere & Company Belt for round baler
USD281032S (en) * 1983-05-10 1985-10-22 Quabaug Rubber Company Shoe sole
US4559724A (en) * 1983-11-08 1985-12-24 Nike, Inc. Track shoe with a improved sole
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US6691432B2 (en) * 2001-01-12 2004-02-17 Salomon S.A. Intermediary sole and shoe equipped with such a sole
US6748675B2 (en) * 2001-06-07 2004-06-15 Mizuno Corporation Sole assembly for sports shoe
USD487331S1 (en) * 2003-05-15 2004-03-09 Wolverine World Wide, Inc. Footwear sole
USD504756S1 (en) * 2004-03-26 2005-05-10 Global Brand Marketing Inc. Footwear outsole

Cited By (10)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US20120060394A1 (en) * 2009-05-21 2012-03-15 Hyuk Soo Kwon Human body-balancing footwear capable of preventing knock-knees and providing cushioning suitable for the weight of wearer
CN102438475A (en) * 2009-05-21 2012-05-02 权赫守 Human body-balancing footwear capable of preventing knock-knees and providing cushioning suitable for the weight of wearer
USD616187S1 (en) * 2009-08-28 2010-05-25 Ku Do Moon Slip resistant sole
GB2503945A (en) * 2011-08-05 2014-01-15 Edward Blackett Sole for footwear including plurality of spaced flexible resilient cleats
US20130283641A1 (en) * 2012-04-27 2013-10-31 Nike, Inc. Sole Structure and Article of Footwear Including Same
US9402442B2 (en) * 2012-04-27 2016-08-02 Nike, Inc. Sole structure and article of footwear including same
WO2015038321A1 (en) * 2013-09-12 2015-03-19 Nike Innovate C.V. Article of footwear comprising outsole with stepped projections
US20150342298A9 (en) * 2013-09-12 2015-12-03 Nike, Inc. Outsole With Stepped Projections For Article Of Footwear
US9655403B2 (en) * 2013-09-12 2017-05-23 Nike, Inc. Outsole with stepped projections for article of footwear
USD767265S1 (en) * 2014-10-14 2016-09-27 B&B Technologies Lp Multicomponent shock mitigation outsole

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