US20150223524A1 - Undergarment - Google Patents

Undergarment Download PDF

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Publication number
US20150223524A1
US20150223524A1 US14429999 US201314429999A US2015223524A1 US 20150223524 A1 US20150223524 A1 US 20150223524A1 US 14429999 US14429999 US 14429999 US 201314429999 A US201314429999 A US 201314429999A US 2015223524 A1 US2015223524 A1 US 2015223524A1
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US
Grant status
Application
Patent type
Prior art keywords
undergarment
uplifting
waistband
portion
crotch portion
Prior art date
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
US14429999
Inventor
Yvonne Anne Brady
Current Assignee (The listed assignees may be inaccurate. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy of the list.)
EVB SPORTS SHORTS Ltd
Original Assignee
EVB SPORTS SHORTS LIMITED
Priority date (The priority date 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 date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date

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Classifications

    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A41WEARING APPAREL
    • A41BSHIRTS; UNDERWEAR; BABY LINEN; HANDKERCHIEFS
    • A41B9/00Undergarments
    • A41B9/001Underpants or briefs
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A41WEARING APPAREL
    • A41BSHIRTS; UNDERWEAR; BABY LINEN; HANDKERCHIEFS
    • A41B9/00Undergarments
    • A41B9/08Combined undergarments
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A41WEARING APPAREL
    • A41DOUTERWEAR; PROTECTIVE GARMENTS; ACCESSORIES
    • A41D1/00Garments
    • A41D1/06Trousers
    • A41D1/08Trousers specially adapted for sporting purposes
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A41WEARING APPAREL
    • A41DOUTERWEAR; PROTECTIVE GARMENTS; ACCESSORIES
    • A41D13/00Professional, industrial, or sporting protective garments, e.g. garments affording protection against blows or punches, surgeon's gowns
    • A41D13/0015Sports garments other than provided for in groups A41D13/0007 - A41D13/088
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A41WEARING APPAREL
    • A41DOUTERWEAR; PROTECTIVE GARMENTS; ACCESSORIES
    • A41D27/00Details of garments or of their making
    • A41D27/02Linings
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A41WEARING APPAREL
    • A41DOUTERWEAR; PROTECTIVE GARMENTS; ACCESSORIES
    • A41D27/00Details of garments or of their making
    • A41D27/10Sleeves; Armholes
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A41WEARING APPAREL
    • A41BSHIRTS; UNDERWEAR; BABY LINEN; HANDKERCHIEFS
    • A41B2300/00Details of underwear, baby linen or handkerchiefs
    • A41B2300/20Inserts
    • A41B2300/22Elastic inserts
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A41WEARING APPAREL
    • A41BSHIRTS; UNDERWEAR; BABY LINEN; HANDKERCHIEFS
    • A41B2400/00Functions or special features of underwear, baby linen or handkerchiefs
    • A41B2400/38Shaping the contour of the body or adjusting the figure
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A41WEARING APPAREL
    • A41CCORSETS; BRASSIERES
    • A41C1/00Corsets or girdles
    • A41C1/003Panty-girdles

Abstract

This invention relates to an undergarment and more particularly to support briefs or shorts for, inter alia, supporting pelvic floor, lower back and abdominal muscles adaptable for use by females or males. The garment is provided with an uplifting mechanism to provide support at the crotch portion.

Description

  • This invention relates to an undergarment and more particularly to support briefs or shorts for, inter alia, supporting pelvic floor muscles adaptable for use by females or males.
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • The muscles of the pelvic floor, the lower abdomen and the lower back form the body's core and proper activation of all of these muscles enable the core to function properly to support and strengthen the body. The pelvic organs are suspended within the pelvis by ligament. High impact exercise such as running create downward forces on the pelvic organs, but one of the core's functions is to hold in and up these organs to support and stabilize the organs. Thus supporting and activating the core can prevent conditions such as pelvic organ prolapse in the long term. Stress or urinary incontinence is a common condition suffered by both men and women resulting from weakness of the pelvic floor and core muscles, which can be caused by childbirth, surgery, back pain or the like. Urinary incontinence then results when a person sneezes, coughs, lifts something heavy or exercises strenuously.
  • It is not uncommon for women to suffer from weakened or damaged pelvic floor muscles following childbirth. In fact, post pregnancy the pelvic area can remain vulnerable for up to a year after birth. Symptoms of weakened pelvic floor muscles can include mild incontinence particularly during exercise or other physical exertions. Weakened pelvic floor muscles and the associated incontinence can also develop with age.
  • Incontinence is distressing for women suffering from the condition and, in particular, mild incontinence that manifests itself during exercise can deter women from exercising post-partum and in fact delay recovery of the pelvic floor muscles.
  • In addition, many people, including both men and women suffer lower back and lower abdomen weakness and pain.
  • Various garments have been developed in an attempt to support pelvic floor muscles and minimize incontinence. For example, tight-fitting female jockstrap-type devices are known which must be worn over underwear and exert a compression force for support while PCT Patent Specification No. WO2009/114899 describes compression shorts with legs, similar to running shorts, and formed from panels of elasticated fabric for compressing muscles. Like the female jockstrap, the compression shorts must be worn over underwear.
  • Neither the jockstrap-type devices nor the compression shorts are suitable for use as underwear or undergarments proper while the requirement to wear undergarments beneath the jockstrap-type devices and compression shorts results in an extra layer of garments on the wearer which can appear bulky, is uncomfortable and can result in the undergarments and support garments becoming entangled particularly at elastic components. Moreover, the elasticated legs of the compression shorts can exert a downward pull on the shorts thereby counteracting pelvic floor support while the compressive forces exerted by the jockstrap-type devices and the compression shorts can themselves be uncomfortable and counter-productive.
  • OBJECT OF THE INVENTION
  • An object of the invention is to provide a garment which supports the pelvic girdle, the lower abdomen and lower back, thereby easing back and pelvic pain caused by instability. A further object is to provide a garment which provides an up-lifting effect to the perineum and pelvic floor. By providing such an effect, pelvic floor, lower abdomen and back muscle may be optimized through increased mechanical advantage of the muscles in their shortened position, increased proprioception of the muscles and compression of the pelvic girdle joints.
  • In addition, it is an object to provide a garment which can help reduce the risk of stress incontinence in the short term and reduce the risk of pelvic organ relapse in the long term. A further object is to provide a garment which mimics the natural way the pelvic floor and core muscles work by providing an uplifting effect rather than the pushing down effect of the prior art garments or belts, which is dysfunctional. Another object of the invention is to overcome at least some of the problems of the prior art.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • According to the invention there is provided an undergarment for providing support to
  • a wearer comprising:
  • a front portion:
  • a rear portion:
  • a crotch portion between the front portion and the rear portion:
  • a waistband for supporting the undergarment on the wearer, and
  • an uplifting mechanism to provide support at the crotch portion.
  • Preferably, the uplifting mechanism extends between the waistband and the crotch portion to provide an uplifting force at the crotch portion to support pelvic floor muscles and recruit core muscles to lend assistance to the pelvic floor muscles.
  • Suitably, the waistband is adapted to support the support briefs on the wearer at hips so that the uplifting force extends between the hips and the crotch.
  • Advantageously, the waistband comprises an elasticated waistband.
  • Suitably, the waistband comprises a drawstring and/or fasteners.
  • In a preferred embodiment of the invention, the uplifting mechanism comprises at least one uplifting band extending between the waistband and the crotch portion.
  • Preferably, the uplifting mechanism comprises two uplifting bands extending between the waistband and the crotch portion.
  • More preferably, the two uplifting bands extend upwards and outwards from the crotch portion to the waistband
  • In some embodiments -the uplifting bands comprise elasticated uplifting bands.
  • Suitably, the elasticated uplifting bands comprise pre-tensioned elasticated uplifting bands.
  • Preferably, the crotch portion comprises a pouch for receiving a sanitary towel.
  • Optionally, the crotch portion further comprises cushioning means to ameliorate chafing.
  • Advantageously, the undergarment comprises an elasticated fabric.
  • In a preferred embodiment of the invention, the undergarment comprises feminine support briefs while, in an alternative embodiment of the invention, the undergarment comprises masculine support briefs.
  • The invention also extends to a blank for forming into an undergarment as hereinbefore defined.
  • In a preferred embodiment of the invention, the undergarment may comprise shorts with leg portions, with the uplift mechanism being provided by one or more compression panels extending from the waistband at the front to the waistband at the back. The compression panels may suitably be formed from a non-elastic fabric. One such suitable fabric is polyester. The panels are suitably provided on the inner surface of the shorts or garment. The panel(s) thus provide uplift support in the crotch portion.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • The invention will now be described, by way of example only, with reference to the accompanying drawings in which:
  • FIG. 1 is a front elevation of the support briefs of the invention on a woman with the briefs supported and hung from the hips of the woman and the uplifting force between the hips and pelvic floor muscles indicated by an arrow;
  • FIG. 2 is a rear elevation of the support briefs on the woman of FIG. 1;
  • FIG. 3 is a plan view of the blank of the briefs of FIGS. 1 and 2,
  • FIG. 4 is a partial cross-section through the blank along the line 1V-1V of FIG. 3 showing a sanitary towel in the pouch of the support briefs,
  • FIG. 5 is a front elevation of a second embodiment of the support briefs of the invention on a woman,
  • FIG. 6 is a rear elevation of the embodiment of FIG. 5 on the woman,
  • FIG. 7 is a plan view of the inner panels of the embodiment of FIG. 5, and
  • FIG. 8 is a partial section through the garment along the line X-X in FIG. 7.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
  • As shown in FIGS. 1 to 4 of the drawings, a pair of support briefs in accordance with the invention is generally indicated by the reference numeral 1. The support briefs 1 are adapted to support the pelvic floor muscles of a woman 2 by being elastically supported from the hips 2 a of the woman 2 to provide a supporting uplift to the pelvic floor muscles of the woman 2.
  • The support briefs 1 are formed from a blank 3 having a top edge 4, a bottom edge 5 and first and second side edges 6,7 respectively, extending between the top edge 4 and the bottom edge 5. The blank 3 is shaped to define a briefs front portion 8, a briefs rear portion 9 and a gusset or crotch portion 10 between the briefs front portion 8 and the briefs rear portion 9. The crotch portion 10 is provided with an openable pouch 11 for receiving a removable sanitary pad or towel 12. The pouch 11 can be opened or closed at a slit optionally provided with fastening means such as Velcro (Trade Mark) if desired.
  • The support briefs 1 are fitted with an elasticated waistband 13 made up of an upper elasticated waistband portion 14 at the top edge 4 of the blank 3 and a lower elasticated waistband portion 15 at the bottom edge 5 of the blank 3. The blank 3 is further shaped at the first and second side edges 6,7 to define inwardly curved or arcuate first and second leg portions 16, 17 respectively. The inwardly curved first and second leg portions 16,17 in the blank 3 define respective first and second leg openings 18, 19 in the support briefs 1.
  • The briefs front portion 8 is provided with an uplifting system for imparting a reinforcing upwards lift to the pelvic floor muscles in the form of a first elasticated uplifting band 20 extending diagonally outwards between the crotch portion 10 and the elasticated waistband 13 and a second elasticated uplifting band 21 also extending diagonally outwards between the crotch portion 10 and the elasticated waistband 13.
  • The first and second uplifting bands 20, 21 therefore define a substantially V-shaped uplifting system on the briefs front portion 8 to, in combination with the waistband 13, support the pelvic floor muscles of a wearer with a comfortable upwards compressive force. As the waistband 13 is supported on the hips 2 a, the uplifting force therefore extends between the pelvic floor muscles and the hips 2 a.
  • The elasticated waistband 13 is made up of waistband elastic 22 contained within waistband fabric 23 and secured in place within the waistband fabric 23 by waistband stitching 24. The elasticated waistband 13 optionally also contains a drawstring (not shown) which can be used to further secure the support briefs 1 in place on the hips 2 a of a user to reinforce the uplifting mechanism. The drawstring can also be replaced by other mechanisms if desired such as clasps, buttons and the like.
  • The first and second uplifting bands 20, 21 are pre-tensioned uplifting bands 20, 21 made up of uplifting band elastic 25 contained within uplifting band fabric 26 and held in place by uplifting band stitching 27.
  • The uplifting bands 20, 21 can be pre-tensioned during manufacture by, firstly, stretching the elastic 25, secondly, covering the stretched elastic 25 with the fabric 26 and, thirdly, applying the stitching 27 to the stretched uplifting bands 20, 21.
  • The briefs front portion 8 is further provided with an elasticated stomach panel 28 between the waistband 13 and the first and second uplifting bands 20, 21. The stomach panel 28 is adapted to exert a compressive force on the stomach area of the woman 2. The elasticated panel 28 can be formed from an elasticated fabric or pre-tensioned elastic material contained within fabric in an analogous fashion to the uplifting bands 20, 21. The elasticated panel 28 is constructed and dimensioned to have a thickness similar to the thickness of the waistband 13 to minimize the visibility of the briefs on the woman.
  • In an alternative embodiment of the invention, the briefs rear portion 9 can also be formed from an elasticated fabric if desired or can be provided with uplifting bands 20, 21 to impart an additional uplifting force to the support briefs 1.
  • In the embodiment shown in FIG. 5 the garment 1 takes the form of shorts with leg portions 29. The uplifting system takes the form of compression panels 30 which extend from the crotch portion 10 to the waistband 13 to give a sling-like effect when worn. The panels 30 are formed from two layers which are placed one on top of the other with no sew technology, and stitched together with flat lock seams to reduce pressure lines and chaffing. During manufacture, the panels 30 are affixed to the blank 3 similarly using no sew technology together with flat lock seams 31 at the edges of the panels. The panels 30 are positioned such that they provide support to the lower back, abdomen and perineum. The compression panels 30 are provided on the inner surface of the garment 3 and are composed of 100% polyester. The panels 30 are attached to the garment by flatlock seams 31 to give a smooth finish. FIG. 7 shows the compression panels 30 in plan view. A mesh liner 32 is provided in the crotch area to hold a sanitary pad/towel 12 in place for comfort. FIG. 8 shows the garment in section.
  • If desired, the crotch portion 10 can also be provided with cushioning means to further increase the comfort of the support briefs and to assist in preventing chafing. In use, the support garment 1 of the invention can be manufactured from a blank 3 as hereinbefore defined and are worn by a man or woman to provide support to, inter alia, pelvic floor muscles and counteract mild incontinence. Unlike products of the prior art, the support briefs or shorts 1 are adapted to be comfortably worn as underwear and are particularly suitable for wear during exercise or other physical exertions. The support briefs or shorts 1 are shaped and configured to be supported from a person's hips 2 a while the uplifting mechanism defined by the waist band 13 and the pre-tensioned uplifting bands 20, 21 together with the elasticated stomach panel 28 (or alternatively, the waist band 13 together with the inner panels 30) provide comfortable support to the wearer. When used with a sanitary towel or similar contained within the pouch 11 (or alternatively 31), the garment 1 also assists in ameliorating incontinence episodes.
  • Although the applicant does not wish to be bound by any theorem, it is believed that the uplifting force generated by the support briefs 1, in contradistinction with the compressive forces of the prior art, assists in an even support in the crotch area whilst minimizing slippage of the support briefs 1 to help in reinforcing pelvic floor muscles and recruit core muscles to lend assistance to the pelvic floor muscles.
  • The invention provides firm uplift support to the pelvis, perineum and lower abdomen. It supports and activates the core, so reducing the risk of stress incontinence and organ prolapse. The uplift support of the garment of the invention stabilizes the pelvic girdle joints and reduces shearing forces in the pelvic joints including the sacroiliac joints, and so eases certain types of back pain and pelvic pain caused by instability. Another significant advantage of the invention is that because the garment provides firm support to the pelvic girdle, it may help the pelvis to return to its original size and circumference sooner if worn in the months following pregnancy.
  • The garment can also provide symptomatic relief for vaginal wall prolapse because it has a lifting effect on the perineum.
  • The support garment 1 of the invention can be manufactured from any suitable fabric and elastic materials known in the art. One suitable fabric is a mixture of 90% polyamid and 10% elastine. Such a fabric has a weight of 250 g/m2.
  • The invention is not limited to the embodiments herein described which may be varied in construction and detail without departing from the scope of the invention.

Claims (17)

  1. 1. An undergarment for providing support to a wearer comprising:
    a front portion;
    a rear portion;
    a crotch portion between the front portion and the rear portion;
    a waistband for supporting the undergarment on the wearer, and
    an uplifting mechanism to provide support at the crotch portion.
  2. 2. The undergarment as claimed in claim 1, wherein the uplifting mechanism extends between the waistband and the crotch portion to provide an uplifting force at the crotch portion.
  3. 3. The undergarment as claimed in claim 1, wherein the waistband is adapted to support the support garment on the wearer at hips so that the uplifting force extends between the hips and the crotch.
  4. 4. The undergarment as claimed in claim 1, wherein the waistband comprises an elasticated waistband.
  5. 5. The undergarment as claimed in claim 1, wherein the waistband comprises a drawstring and/or fasteners.
  6. 6. The undergarment as claimed in claim 1, wherein the uplifting mechanism comprises at least one uplifting band extending between the waistband and the crotch portion.
  7. 7. The undergarment as claimed in claim 6, wherein the uplifting mechanism comprises two uplifting bands extending between the waistband and the crotch portion.
  8. 8. The undergarment as claimed in claim 6, wherein the at least one uplifting band extends upwards and outwards from the crotch portion to the waistband
  9. 9. The undergarment as claimed in claim 6, wherein the at least one uplifting band comprises elasticated uplifting bands.
  10. 10. The undergarment as claimed in claim 9, wherein the elasticated at least one uplifting band comprises pre-tensioned elasticated uplifting bands.
  11. 11. The undergarment as claimed in claim 1, wherein the undergarment is formed as shorts.
  12. 12. The undergarment as claimed in claim 11, wherein the shorts comprise compression panels of non-elastic material provided on the inner surface of the shorts.
  13. 13. The undergarment as claimed in claim wherein the crotch portion comprises a pouch for receiving a sanitary towel.
  14. 14. The undergarment as claimed in claim wherein the crotch portion further comprises cushioning means to ameliorate chafing.
  15. 15. The undergarment as claimed in claim comprising an elasticated fabric.
  16. 16. A blank for forming into an undergarment, the undergarment comprising:
    a front portion;
    a rear portion;
    a crotch portion between the front portion and the rear portion;
    a waistband for supporting the undergarment on the wearer, and
    an uplifting mechanism to provide support at the crotch portion.
  17. 17. (canceled)
US14429999 2012-09-21 2013-09-20 Undergarment Abandoned US20150223524A1 (en)

Priority Applications (3)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
IES2012/0416 2012-09-21
IES20120416 2012-09-21
PCT/EP2013/069644 WO2014044831A1 (en) 2012-09-21 2013-09-20 An undergarment

Publications (1)

Publication Number Publication Date
US20150223524A1 true true US20150223524A1 (en) 2015-08-13

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ID=50340603

Family Applications (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
US14429999 Abandoned US20150223524A1 (en) 2012-09-21 2013-09-20 Undergarment

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US (1) US20150223524A1 (en)
EP (1) EP2897479A1 (en)
CA (1) CA2885613A1 (en)
WO (1) WO2014044831A1 (en)

Families Citing this family (2)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
WO2016094289A1 (en) * 2014-12-08 2016-06-16 Fisher Zachary Undergarment with support structure
GB2547483A (en) * 2016-02-22 2017-08-23 Lyons Hannah Garments

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