Publication NumberUS 10507351
Assignees
  • THE REGENTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN
Filing StatusIssued Patent
US PAIR StatusPatented Case
US PAIR Status Date2019-11-26
Application Number15/880756
AvailabilityUnknown
Filing Date2018-01-26
Publication Date2019-12-17

Abstract

A wearable device that enables adjustable resistance to the extremity of a user using an attachment system and associated eddy current braking system. The wearable resistive device can be used for physical therapy made necessary due to weakness caused by neuromuscular diseases, such as stroke and cerebral palsy, orthopedic disorders, general disuse, or even for overall fitness.

Claims

  • 1. A wearable resistive device to be worn by a user, the user having a flexible joint extending between a first body portion and a second body portion, the wearable resistive device comprising: a brace structure assembly having a first section configured to be connected to the first body portion of the user and a second section configured to be connected to the second body portion of the user, the first section being pivotally connected to the second section about a brace axis; an eddy current braking system comprising: an input shaft connected to the first section of the brace structure assembly for rotational movement therewith, the input shaft being rotatable about a shaft axis coaxially aligned with the brace axis, a magnetic assembly connected to the second section of the brace structure assembly for movement therewith, the magnetic assembly having at least one magnet pair, a transmission system operably coupled to the input shaft receiving the rotational movement thereof and driving a driven shaft in response thereto, a disk being operably coupled to the driven shaft for rotation therewith in response to movement of the driven shaft, the disk being positioned relative to the at least one magnet pair of the magnetic assembly to induce eddy currents therein whereby a resistive force is generated opposing rotational movement of the first section of the brace structure assembly relative to the second section of the brace structure assembly in at least one direction.
  • 2. The wearable resistive device according to claim 1 further comprising: a movement mechanism configured to move the magnetic assembly relative to the disk.
  • 3. The wearable resistive device according to claim 2 wherein the movement mechanism is a manually-adjustable mechanism.
  • 4. The wearable resistive device according to claim 2 wherein the movement mechanism is an actuator-controlled mechanism.
  • 5. The wearable resistive device according to claim 2 wherein instrumentation on the device provides biofeedback to the user.
  • 6. The wearable resistive device according to claim 1 wherein the input shaft of the eddy current braking system is coaxially aligned with an axis of the driven shaft.
  • 7. The wearable resistive device according to claim 1 wherein the at least one magnet of the magnetic assembly comprises at least one electromagnet operable to output a variable magnetic force.
  • 8. The wearable resistive device according to claim 1 wherein the transmission system comprises a gear ratio between the input shaft and the driven shaft.
  • 9. The wearable resistive device according to claim 8 wherein the gear ratio is about 1:26.
  • 10. The wearable resistive device according to claim 1 wherein the transmission system comprises a clutch system that drives the driven shaft in a single rotational direction in response to bi-directional movement of the input shaft.
  • 11. The wearable resistive device according to claim 1 wherein the shaft axis of the input shaft is coaxially aligned with an axis of the flexible joint.
  • 12. The wearable resistive device according to claim 1 wherein the first section is configured to be connected to an upper extremity of the user.
  • 13. The wearable resistive device according to claim 1 wherein the first section is configured to be connected to a lower extremity of the user.
  • 14. The wearable resistive device according to claim 1 wherein the first section is configured to be connected to a torso of the user.