Patent application title: Soccer juggling training and rehabilation device
Michael Jacobs (Cheshrie, CT, US)
IPC8 Class: AA63B6900FI
Class name: Playing field or court game; game element or accessory therefor other than projector or projectile, per se practice or training device for game using apertured or pocketed goal or target (e.g., for hockey, soccer, polo, lacrosse, etc.)
Publication date: 2013-01-24
Patent application number: 20130023361
This invention relates to a novel method to learn soccer juggling skills
as well as rehabilitation device that strengthens stabilizing muscles of
the legs after a leg injury. The device can can also be used to train the
major core and leg muscles used to kick a ball.
1. A "Concaved" shaped structure for the purpose of soccer ball juggling,
which is made from a single sheet of flexible plastic or similar, defined
by the following characteristic: approx. 32 inches of a horizontal arc
with a vertical height equal to the hip height of user or approx 24
2. The device of claim 1, which creates a hollow half cylinder that forms a confined volume to control the ball while the ball is juggled.
3. The device of claim 1, which is attached to two vertical rigid tubes or similar, spanning from the ground to approximately hip height.
4. The product of claim 3, in which vertical rigid supports are attached at the top or hip height with a horizontal rigid tube or similar, creating a stabilizing hand grip while juggling.
5. Device of claim 1 which can be used for low impact training to increase balance, strengthening stabilizer muscles.
6. Device of claim 1 which can be built to varying sizes, to accommodate user heights and skill levels.
7. Device of claim 1 which can decrease the time to learn foot and ball coordination.
 Ball control skills are critical to the sport of Soccer. Naturally, the more times a player touches the ball, the greater tendency that player has to acquire greater diverse skills. Foot juggling a soccer ball is one of the basic skills that promotes the refined dexterity necessary in the sport of soccer.
 There does exist a device where the ball goes into a bag with a string, promoting the control with a tethered ball. Though this does have many benefits, the skills acquired from a non-tethered ball, better simulates the training for the skills needed.
 Ferdie Ato Adoboe: the Father of Speed Juggling successfully lobbied the event in the Guinness World Records in 1999. Coach Ferdie is very active in the soccer development community. The single skill Ferdie teches foremost is ball control, and often has juggling competitions at his soccer camps.
 Soccer juggling develops balance, with straightening the stabilizer muscles of the supporting leg.
 The problem with learning soccer juggling is most time is spent chasing the miss hit ball. Hence discouraging and delaying the time to learn the skill.
 Juggling can be used during rehabilitaton from leg injuries. Running on an injured leg, can prolong recovery as each leg receives the total weight and impact of the body.
 Juggling allows the player/patient to build the stabilizer leg muscles without impact and with the force generated by the small tap (5 inches) of the ball. This activity provides a better suited workout for the leg muscles without impact and heavy forces for the rehabilitating player/patient.
 The exercise of lying down in the supine position and juggling, works the core muscles of the torso as well as the hip flexor muscles. These muscles are essential when striking a ball full force. Additionally, hip flexor muscles coordination, develops and promotes running speed that is needed in any athletic event.
SUMMARY OF INVENTION
 The invention was the result of teaching my son how to juggle a soccer ball. After the accomplishing 800 juggles, the challenge was to see how fast he could juggle. Therefore the desired skill is to have the ball travel only a few inches off the foot after each touch.
 To develop this skill; a greater balance is needed, similar to when a young child learns to walk or ride a bicycle; it is best with assistance to steady the child so training can continue. The continued training eventually leads to the new acquired skill. Equally similar to, when a leg injured person uses parallel bars to help to exercise the leg muscles to walk again.
 The invention combines a hand held bar for balance and half cylinder formed from pliable plastic sheet to help contain the ball while juggling. A plastic sheet gives the ball little of no vertical resistance, while controlling lateral positioning within the volume bounded by the half cylinder and the juggling leg.
 The control space helps, insure a greater number of juggles. A girls team aged 10 and under quickly reached 100 consecutive taps from fewer than 3 taps, after only 15 minutes of training. Though the young players continued to exploit the assistance from the confined space, the increase number of touches increased the workout of the muscle groups required to master the skill of juggling.
 A short description of this simple device is as follows:
 A "U" shape, made of 1/2'' pvc, from the following pieces; 2 vertical straight tube pieces, 1 horizontal tube piece and two 90 degree with female hub fittings worked well. This created a rigid structure for a horizontal hand held balance support and for mounting one plastic sheet forming half cylinder on the vertical tubing. 2 vertical tubing pieces can be approx. hip high, hence player dependent. The length of horizontal piece can vary as to skill level. A shorter piece 10 inches in length creates a juggling volume smaller and easier that a length of 15 inches.
 A plastic sheet of polypropylene 0.030 inches thick by 24 inches high by 32 inches long or similar, is attach with Velcro or push rivet or similar to the vertical PVC tubing. When a user stands in front of the device, the player can be assisted by the horizontal bar. With the ball resting on top of the foot and side of the polypropylene sheet, the player can start vertical taps or juggles without without the ball rolling away. A younger players may like a 9 inch horizontal bar, and use 2 hands for balance. Once the skill is improved, a user can use one or no hands. As the skill progresses a larger horizontal bar can be applied. Finally, other skills such as "round the world" can be learned. Place ball on foot; flip ball up just enough so that the foot that "flipped" the ball; can circle above the ball and back down and around to tap the ball before reaching the ground. Greater skills and creativeness creates greater skills.
 1. A "U" shaped structure comprising of two vertical sections and one horizontal section of rigid material supporting a flexible sheet, that forms a hollow and concaved half cylinder. A vertical dimension approx. 32 inch in length or hip height of user, creates a horizontal hand support to assist balancing. While the hollow half cylinder forms a controlled volume within to juggle the ball.
Patent applications in class For game using apertured or pocketed goal or target (e.g., for hockey, soccer, polo, lacrosse, etc.)
Patent applications in all subclasses For game using apertured or pocketed goal or target (e.g., for hockey, soccer, polo, lacrosse, etc.)